England beat France to seal third place
England put their semi-final disappointment behind them to claim third place at the IBSA Blind Football European Championships with a convincing 2-0 win over France.
A first-half strike from Roy Turnham set the tone before Keryn Seal’s composed finish four minutes from time gave England some consolation after losing to Spain on Thursday in the final four.
Turnham said: “It was big test of character to come back from Thursday and it was test that we passed. We showed plenty of heart to win this against a French team who were determined to defend against us.
“People are starting to respect how professional blind football has become and what a great sport it is. Every result we have got we have tried to do it for the supporters.”
England had the best of the opening exchanges but Robin Williams was unable to connect with his shot after dancing through several French defenders.
It was chances aplenty in Berlin and Dylan Malpas had to be at full stretch to deny David Labarre whose shot was heading for the bottom corner.
But moments later the Three Lions had the lead and it was Turnham who continued his fine tournament with another solo goal.
The prolific international beat three players before coolly slotting into the bottom corner for his seventh goal of the tournament.
England beat France 7-0 in the group stage but it didn’t look like being a repeat of that score as Les Bleus attempted to force an equaliser.
But the game had a long delay after nasty clash of heads between Frenchmen Gael Riviere and Jerone Penisson.
England almost extended their lead after Seal’s fierce effort struck the bottom of the post.
But Seal would not be denied his goal as he showed great composure - as he has done throughout the tournament -- to finish past Julien Royer with four minutes to go.
France had been down to four players due to three injuries and struggled to fashion any late chances to spark a comeback.
Goalkeeper Malpas said: “After the disappointment on Thursday we are through to the World Cup and we are going towards that and will show the rest of the world what England are all about.”