Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Pearce Hits Back at the Boom and Bust Critics; Under-21 Manager in Swipe at Pundits

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Pearce Hits Back at the Boom and Bust Critics; Under-21 Manager in Swipe at Pundits

Article excerpt

Byline: Ben Rumsby

STUART Pearce claims his critics were not qualified to judge England's performances at the European Under-21 Championship and demanded an end to their "boom and bust" mentality.

Pearce hit back at those who have questioned his tactics at this month's tournament in Denmark in the wake of bore draws against Spain and Ukraine, results that have left the Young Lions on the brink of elimination.

Failure to win tomorrow's final Group B game against Czech Republic would see England crash out of the competition.

However, Pearce (pictured above) was last night confident of a victory which would seal a semi-final spot.

"People don't realise the pressures of the first group games and the second group games, they really don't," Pearce said.

"It's easy to sit at home in front of the television and say, 'The team should do this, it's as straightforward as that'.

"Until you actually come to these tournaments and you've stood in the technical area, or you've been on the pitch and understand what it's like...

"The more experiences you have like that, the more you can probably sit here, certainly as a manager, with a more balanced view.

"I've been there as a player, I know what it's like, how nervy it can be - first games of World Cups, European Championships - and you've got to understand it."

He added: "I have to make sure that I view all our young players with support and not boom and bust.

"I certainly wouldn't put that pressure on young players."

Pearce has been accused of employing overly conservative tactics in the opening two games.

He said: "For someone who you're suggesting has got it that badly wrong, not to be beaten this season (competitively) indicates that I might be right and others might be wrong.

"I know the strengths of my side. I work with them on a daily basis and that's what other people don't do. …

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