Duo out of Under-21 play-off

  • Last Updated: October 10 2012, 22:02 BST

Nottingham Forest midfielder Henri Lansbury and Southampton defender Nathaniel Clyne have withdrawn from the England Under-21 squad for the European Championship play-off against Serbia because of injury.

  • Henri Lansbury: Will miss play-off
  • Nathaniel Clyne: Also ruled out 

Liverpool defender Jack Robinson has been called in as a replacement.

The first leg is at Norwich's Carrow Road ground on Friday night, with the return in Krusevac on Tuesday.

Earlier this week, manager Stuart Pearce saw Chelsea's Ryan Bertrand and Liverpool's Jonjo Shelvey promoted to the senior squad after Arsenal left-back Kieran Gibbs was forced out of the World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and Poland with a thigh problem.

England Under-21s will be hoping for a repeat of the performance they enjoyed on the last visit to Carrow Road two seasons ago, when Pearce's Young Lions beat Romania 2-1 which helped secure a place at the 2011 European Championships finals in Denmark.

"This play-off has been pencilled in for Norwich for a long while, simply because of how we have always been welcomed by the club and the fans in this neck of the woods," Pearce told TheFA.com.

"It's a passionate area for football, they love their team and they also love England, so always give us great support at Carrow Road.

"This is somewhere the Under-21s have always enjoyed playing and I am delighted we're going back."

Despite the changes in personnel, Pearce's squad enjoyed a productive training session at Norwich's Colney base, where Canaries goalkeeper Declan Rudd was put through his paces along with the likes of Sunderland striker Connor Wickham and promising Liverpool forward Raheem Sterling.

Pearce took the squad to a speedway meeting at King's Lynn on Wednesday evening which the former Manchester City manager feels will help them bond ahead of the crucial play-off tie.

He said: "We try and get the team out when we meet up and this is a great opportunity for us before our game at Norwich.

"I remember taking the Manchester City team to the speedway at Belle Vue when I was there.

"It's something different for the boys and it's great for them to see sportsmen of their own age riding these bikes, seeing the motorcycles in the pits and meeting the riders has been really interesting for us."


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