Home » Mary Earps helps England to victory with clean sheet

Mary Earps helps England to victory with clean sheet

by Zoe Hodges

England women have won their opening game of the Euros beating Austria 1-0 in a tense match.

Three United players featured in the squad, Mary Earps, Alessia Russo and Ella Toone and all played their part in the Lionesses victory.

Toone and Russo began the game on the bench whilst Earps, Wiegman’s preferred keeper at the moment, started the match at Old Trafford.

Earps had a fantastic night in goal as Austria were relentless in trying to find the equaliser after Beth Mead put England ahead.

The shot stopper kept a clean sheet but was worked hard for it, pulling off two outstanding saves in quick succession.

Barbara Dunst tested her first, forcing her into a diving save to her left which resulted in a corner. She moved her feet well to get across her goal to make the save.

Julia Hickelsberger-Fuller cut inside and got her shot away but once again Earps was there with a diving save to push the ball behind.

Although England had made the breakthrough after just 16 minutes, before that point, they didn’t look settled, nerves seemed to be getting the better of them.

Once they went ahead, though it settled them initially it was a long ninety minutes and it felt at times that they were desperate to cling on.

Toone and Russo entered the game around 63 minutes in, the Manchester crowd giving them extra encouragement as they stepped onto the Old Trafford turf.

They immediately injected pace into the side, creating opportunities for their teammates.

Russo came close herself shortly after she came on but she couldn’t turn and get her shot off in time and Austria survived the scare.

It was a nervy performance, not England’s best but the three points are in the bag.

A record attendance for a Euros tournament was there to witness the opening game, 68,871 people celebrated in Old Trafford when the final whistle blew.

England will now face Norway on Monday at 8pm.

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