Kluivert keeps Canaries ace busy as England U21s are beaten in Holland
- Credit: PA Wire/PA Images
Norwich City right-back Max Aarons won his fifth England Under-21 cap this evening, playing the opening hour of a cruel 2-1 friendly defeat in Holland.
Aarons started at right-back with a debutant in front of him on the wing, West Ham winger Grady Diangana, who has been impressing in the Championship on loan at West Brom.
The Canaries starlet had a high calibre opponent to mark as well, Justin Kluivert, the son of Barcelona legend Patrick. The winger was signed from Ajax by Roma for a reported initial £15m last year, already has two senior caps and has been a regular in Serie A and the Europa League this season.
There were some bright attacking moments for the 19-year-old early on, making up for an air-kick which wasted a good crossing position by whipping in a fine cross in the 12th minute, which QPR's Ebere Eze didn't react to quickly enough.
Aarons had little to do with the hosts taking the lead in the 23rd minute, with England keeper Aaron Ramsdale deflecting a cross from the right into his own net, with Aarons not able to make a goal-line clearance.
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There was a worrying moment for the Norwich defender in the 36th minute, when poor control of a long ball allowed Kluivert to attack, but he quickly moved goal-side and Trevoh Chalobah was there to clear the danger.
A burst of pace to link with Diangana saw the winger fouled early in the second half, only for Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher to waste the wide free-kick.
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Aarons exchanged a nice one-two with Diangana in the 51st minute and used his pace to keep the ball in, only for a weak cross to be cleared at the near post.
The referee bizarrely turned away a clear penalty after Rhian Brewster had been fouled in the 56th minute but Diangana won a corner, which was played short to Aarons, whose curling cross was headed clear.
Tottenham midfielder Oliver Skipp covered well for Aarons soon after, with the City defender chasing back after being caught out of position as an attack broke down - and the full-back's night came to an end in the 62nd minute, as he was replaced by Chelsea prospect Reece James.
Manchester United striker Mason Greenwood took advantage of poor defending to deservedly equalise for England in the 74th minute, with Canaries defender Ben Godfrey remaining an unused substitute, having played all of a 3-0 qualifying win in Albania on Friday.
However, a wonderful free-kick from Javairo Dilrosun snatched the win for the hosts in injury-time, after the Young Lions had been pushing for a winner.