Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
England among the possible upsetters at Women's 2017 Euros
by Ridge Mahoney, July 15th, 2017 12:57AM
Subscribe to Soccer World Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  chelsea, england, european championship

MOST COMMENTED

An encouraging and historic third-place finish at the 2015 Women’s World Cup has fueled optimism among the players and head coach of England, which is one of several nations hoping to spring a surprise at the 2017 European Championships.

A nation hoping to lift the trophy will likely have to upset Germany and/or France, which are the favorites in the 16-team tournament to be played in the Dutch locales of Utrecht, Rotterdam, Breda, Tilburg, Doetinchem, Deventer and Enschede starting on Sunday. The final is in Enschede Aug. 6.

(Games will be shown in the U.S. on ESPN3.com. The final is scheduled to be aired on ESPNU.)

Eight of the 11 Women’s Euros and the last six in a row have been won by Germany. France’s history in this tournament is one of perpetual disappointment – because of attitude and spirit rather than a deficiency in talent – but the current squad has shown signs of forbearance that stamp it as a genuine challenger.

German midfielder Dzsenifer Marozsán is generally regarded as the world’s best at her position, and French defender Wendie Renard is perhaps tops in her class.

“Germany will always be there or thereabouts but France are learning to progress in tournaments,” English midfielder Fara Williams told The Guardian. Her penalty kick downed Germany, 1-0, in the 2015 World Cup third-place playoff. “We know we’re capable of beating leading teams but the margins between Europe’s top sides are small. Spain could surprise people; they’re really confident.”

Spain is grouped with England, along with Scotland and Portugal, and head coach Mark Sampson believes his squad is stronger than the 2015 edition staged in Canada.

“We’re in a much better spot than 2015, in every area,” said Sampson. “In Canada, we had three players [Lucy Bronze, Steph Houghton and Karen Bardsley] in the team of the tournament and finished third. Logic tells me we need five or six to finish first; I honestly believe we have that now.”

Now is an important time for the women’s game in England and for its national team players, full-time professionals who earn salaries in excess of $60,000, stay in excellent hotels, and travel in business class. Sampson’s predecessor, former international Hope Powell, fought a constant battle to raise the image of the women’s team and increase support and resources provided by the English Football Association, but the club game is at a crossroads.

Attendances for Women’s Super League games are very modest; only Manchester City averages more than 2,000 per game, and the median for some teams is less than 1,000. City and Chelsea are well-backed, but Notts County folded and Sunderland has become a part-time operation.

“We couldn’t have got here without Hope,” says Williams. “Mark’s still having to knock on doors to get what we need but we’re certainly getting more than ever before. It can help us get further than we’ve ever been. It’s no coincidence that Germany are very well looked after; top European teams have the resources."

Sampson is renowned for rotating players to keep them hungry and sharp as well as papering over their technical limitations. So far, he’s been able to keep the players enthusiastic and committed to each other.

The tournament kicks off Sunday in Utrecht, where England is based, with the host country playing Norway, which lost to Germany in the last staging of the competition in 2013 and also in 2005. England lost to the Germans in 2009. It starts its quest Wednesday against Scotland.

The opener is sold out and at least initially the tournament is receiving considerable exposure.


1 comment
  1. John Schubert
    commented on: July 15, 2017 at 8:10 p.m.
    Living in the USA where canopy I watch their matches on TV? I'm suffering through Gold Cup Matches and I'd rather watch good soccer.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Off The Post
English FA is in hot seat for personnel practices after Sampson firing    
A day after he coached England to a 6-0 win over Russia, Mark Sampson was removed ...
Goalkeeper crushes player's face in Germany: Will this be the wakeup call?    
The hero of last weekend's Bundesliga action was Raymond Best, the doctor credited with saving the ...
L'Affaire Kurzawa: Another video blackmail scandal rocks French national team    
After the infamous "L'Affaire Sextape" that likely ended the French national team careers of Mathieu Valbuena ...
American owners still finding their feet at Swansea City    
More than a year after taking control of Premier League club Swansea City, owners Steve Kaplan ...
World Cup draw: FIFA rankings take on new importance    
FIFA's organizing committee for competitions has announced plans for the World Cup 2018 draw in Moscow ...
British parliament hears about FIFA's resistance to independent scrutiny    
How has FIFA changed since Sepp Blatter stepped down as president and Gianni Infantino was elected ...
Bayern Munich unrest after Lewandowski, Ribery and Mueller complain     
Those getting tired of Bayern Munich's Bundesliga dominance -- it has won the last five titles ...
Fancy Bears, Russia and the World Cup cybersecurity threat    
Cybersecurity has been an issue in our lives since the Internet took off in the mid-1990s. ...
Euro leagues ponder impact of EPL decision on shortened transfer window    
Premier League clubs have voted to close their transfer window prior to the start of the ...
American soccer's 13 unique applications    
I decided to write this article the moment I finished watching Costa Rica beat the USA, ...
>> Off The Post Archives