Tomka the England hero

James Tomkins continued his magnificent week with two goals as England defeated Russia 3-1 in an Under-19 international friendly in Milton Keynes.

Tomkins opened the scoring in the 19th minute with a header after a good cross by Reading's James Henry. The Basildon-based defender then followed up from close range to score when Sone Aluko's shot was blocked in the 59th minute. Evgeny Pesegov pulled one back with a free-kick two minutes later but almost immediately Newcastle United striker Andy Carroll restored the two-goal advantage.

Having made his first-team debut in a 1-1 draw against Everton last weekend, Tomkins had lined up at the heart of the Young Lions defence. The England No5 has been capped at U16, U17 and U18 level by his country and is firmly established at this age group. The centre-back, who turns 19 on Saturday, was rested in the second half, going off on 66 minutes as club-mate Junior Stanislas joined the action from the bench.

Both players, along with Jordan Spence and Freddie Sears, all have realistic hopes of winning a place in Brian Eastick's squad for May's vital European U19 Championship elite round. The Young Lions are due to come up against hosts Belarus, Serbia and Poland in a four-country mini-tournament to decide who will compete in the eight-nation 14-26 July finals in the Czech Republic. Only the winners will progress.