This time last week England were about to play their first Euro 2013 game vs Spain. Even with my reservations about the squad I had high hopes for this tournament and am greatly disappointed to be writing this round up in the wake of England’s elimination last night. Despite this, this week’s weekly round up does contain a couple of positive pieces so do read on!
- Starting last Friday and pre-England at the Euros, reds duo Natasha Dowie and Amanda Da Costa put in an appearance at Media City in Manchester at an FA girls football festival ahead of England game against Spain.
Natasha was back in Manchester again a few days later on Wednesday alongside Arsenal’s Kim Little as part of BBC3’s Match of the Day panel. You can watch this on BBC Iplayer here.
- Another reds duo representing the club in the past week has been goalkeeper Danielle Gibbons and defender Sam Chappell. They have been part of Team GB at the World University Games in Russia. We last left off as Team GB had their semi final coming up, they beat Brazil 1-0 (highlights can be found here) to set up a final against Mexico. That final was played on Monday evening and GB twice fell behind before drawing level and running riot in the last 10 minutes. Team GB deservedly collecting their goal medals after a 6-2 victory.
Highlights of the gold medal game are on this link here. Congratulations to the Liverpool Ladies & the rest of Team GB!
- Fara Williams took part in a Vauxhall twitter Q & A on Sunday. All of Fara’s answers are on the Vauxhall website here: Fara Williams Twitter Takeover
- Katrin Omarsdottir and Iceland had picked up a point already at the Euros this time last week, following on from this on Sunday they were beaten 3-0 by a German side that had struggled to find the net in their previous game vs Holland. Iceland then faced Holland themselves, beating the dutch 1-0 ensuring their progression to the quarter final despite placing 3rd in their group and dumping Holland out in the meantime. Katrin played the full second half against Germany yet was an unused substitute in the Holland game.
Iceland will play Sweden in the quarter finals this Sunday.
- Last Friday night England went behind twice against a strong Spanish side, twice drawing level before an injury time goal meant Spain took all 3 points. On Tuesday night we went into the Russia game knowing we needed to secure a win, again we fell behind and only after the introduction of Toni Duggan and Kelly Smith did England equalise, this time in injury time ourselves, through a well taken Duggan strike. Duggan’s goal offered England a life line, a win against France would see us through in 3rd place while a draw would quite literally see us or Denmark pulled out of a hat for a place in the quarter finals.
Hope Powell made 3 changes to the side that drew with Russia, changing the formation to a 4-4-2, Duggan replaced Jill Scott to partner Ellen White up front, Karen Carney replaced the injured Rachel Yankey while Laura Bassett was dropped for Sophie Bradley. England went behind early in the first half and were lucky to go in at half time just a goal down. After the break England needed inspiration from somewhere, Kelly Smith and Jill Scott were brought on but unable to stop France scoring twice more, while Jess Clarke was brought on at 3-0 down with ten minutes to go. England’s Euro 2013 campaign was over with just a point taken from a possible 9.
It’s disappointing as a Liverpool supporter to not see either Gemma Bonner or Lucy Bronze given a chance in any of the 3 games. Going into the tournament 3 of England’s preferred back 4 were injured. Bonner and Bronze were both in fantastic form pre-Euro’s and it would have been nice to see them get some minutes on the pitch. Fara Williams was another red in great form yet was played in a position higher than the one she occupies for Liverpool. Another disappointment came post-match in an interview with England captain Casey Stoney who commented that players have ‘got to work harder at clubs’. In response to this I would like to again point out that Natasha Dowie, the leagues leading goalscorer and arguably most in-form attacking player, was left at home despite an incredible work rate and goals to games ratio this season.