Author Topic: England women target Euro boost  (Read 996 times)

Offline David

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England women target Euro boost
« on: May 07, 2008, 05:54:34 PM »
England coach Hope Powell wants to end the season on a high in Thursday's Euro 2009 qualifier against Belarus.

England, who reached the 2007 World Cup quarter-finals, are unbeaten in the Euro qualifiers and Powell wants them to keep up the momentum in Minsk.

"We knew there would be a hangover effect after all the demands of the World Cup," said Powell.

"But ultimately it's about winning and getting through these qualifiers and then being able to kick on again."

Powell arranged for double Olympic gold medallist Dame Kelly Holmes to give her squad a motivational talk ahead of Thursday's game in Belarus.

She felt they needed a lift, even though they top Group One and beat Belarus 4-0 at Walsall in October.

"We came back [from the World Cup] at the end of September and the girls had to go straight into domestic football and the Euro qualifiers, and that's been really tough," added Powell.
   
"So I thought bringing in Kelly, who knows all about what it takes to win things and be the very best, would be ideal before our last game of a long, hard season.

"Her talk was inspirational and certainly had the girls buzzing. Now we have to finish our preparations [to face Belarus] as best we can and hope the result takes care of itself."

England's preparations were disrupted as half of the 20-player squad were involved in Monday's FA Cup final, in which Arsenal beat Leeds United 4-1.

Just one day later, and boosted by the return from Euro suspension of Arsenal striker Kelly Smith - who hit two Cup final goals - the squad flew to Minsk.

Smith has scored 27 goals for England and scored twice for Arsenal in the FA Cup

Powell stated: "It wasn't the best way to prepare for an important qualifier but we just have to manage it and get on with the task of winning."

If England's build-up to the match was not ideal, Belarus fared even worse - they were hammered 6-1 by Spain in a qualifier last Saturday.

Powell's team are unbeaten after five group matches but will nevertheless need to improve after March's disappointing goalless draw with the Czech Republic.

And as they step out at Minsk they will have the words of Kelly Holmes ringing in their ears and urging them on.

Holmes, an Arsenal fan, said: "I've told Hope I'm going to keep my eye on the girls - my passion, like hers, is to get the best out of them.

"I asked them to talk about their ultimate ambitions and every single one of them said they wanted to be a World Cup winner or a European Championships winner.

"But that's just saying it. Do they absolutely have it in the pit of their stomach? Do they crave it?"

Ninety minutes in Minsk might begin to answer those questions.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/women/7387506.stm

Offline pat51

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Re: England women target Euro boost
« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2008, 05:04:13 PM »
Belarus 1 England 6

Offline Oldship30

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Re: England women target Euro boost
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2008, 05:41:30 PM »
Thanks Pat, brilliant result - Been frantically watching loads of websites which made my computer crash!! ;D

Offline pat51

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Re: England women target Euro boost
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2008, 05:58:09 PM »
Big full report on F A .COM within 5 minutes of the end of the match...what is going on ?  Fara hat-trick