England Women won against the USA at the Shebelieves Cup and it comes at the right time to boost the team’s confidence.
The 1-0 win with a late Ellen White goal is a fantastic result. Not many teams have managed to beat the US Women’s national team on their own soil. The world champions have a proud home record, so it is a superb coup by England.
It will certainly boost the team morale ahead of the Euros in July, when England will be one of the favourites to win the trophy following their World Cup Bronze medal.
There is no doubt that the pressure will build up towards the summer and such a result cannot be underestimated as it shows England has the quality and the mental strength to beat a top team.
There have been questions over the past two seasons about what England where looking to achieve attacking-wise, as we know solid defending in the base of their game.
It looks like the coaching staff have decided to play a bit higher on the pitch and try to create many more chances in comparison to the previous games.
Against France, England could only sustain the intensity level for 45 minutes before reverting to the back to the wall defending.
The USA game showed an England team competing for 90 minutes, scoring late in the game. It has to be noted that playing a back four allowed Lucy Bronze, a world class right-back, to be free to offer attacking options. This is something she cannot do in a back three system as the wing back gets the wing space.
Lucy’s shot hit the crossbar and Ellen White managed to finish from close range for the winner.
England will have to follow up that performance with a good display against Germany, but regardless of the final SheBelieves Cup game result, there is a clear feeling that something has clicked and success in a tournament might be closer than ever.