Lucy Bronze says Rice and Trippier have told Lionesses to embrace home Euros | England women’s football team


Lucy Bronze has revealed how Declan Rice and Kieran Trippier have been encouraging the Lionesses to embrace the pressures of a home Euros – but that the women won’t settle for losing the final on penalties.

The England men’s and women’s teams have both been training at St George’s Park during the former’s Nations League campaign and the latter’s preparations for the European Championship to be staged in this country next month.

Bronze, who recently announced she is leaving Manchester City, starred in the World Cups in Canada in 2015 and France three years ago. But now Sarina Wiegman’s team will be among the favourites when they kick off the finals against Austria at Old Trafford on 6 July.

Gareth Southgate’s side face Hungary on Tuesday at Molineux where the Lionesses will play Belgium on Thursday. The two squads have been mingling informally when at the National Football Centre in Staffordshire, as well as for a formal talk at the end of last week.

“Trippier and Declan Rice came in last week,” Bronze said. “Trippier had a lot of things to say because he’s a player that has a been at a lot of tournaments before and has had a bit of stick from the media, [having] played out of position last year.

“We were talking about blocking out the outside world and I think that’s something that I’ve probably had to deal with more than most players in this England squad over past years. It was nice to be able to speak to someone who has had these issues and how they deal with these moments.

“We’ve been in and around St George’s Park with them over the past couple of weeks. We’ve chatted to a lot of them. They’re just human beings. They sit and play cards, we can sit with them [and] it’s a nice atmosphere because I think both teams have gelled really well. They see us [as] the same.”

Moving the Goalposts
Moving the Goalposts

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Wiegman led the Netherlands to glory in her own country in the 2017 Women’s Euros in which England reached the semi-finals. Southgate’s team went one better last summer, only to lose the final to Italy on penalties.

Bronze quipped that she would not be satisfied with such a feat. “I wouldn’t settle for that,” she said with a chuckle. “I wouldn’t take it to penalties – we’d win the game in normal time.”

Bronze does not think hosting the tournament will bring any undue pressure. “I’ve been in so many tournaments, and Champions League finals, big games where you have a lot of perceived pressure,” she said. “But the best players and the biggest players want to play in those games, with the full crowds. And I think we’re trying to see it as just a lot of support. It’s our 12th man, hopefully.

“We’ve seen what a difference it made to the men’s team last year, kind of being that home nation. And obviously they made the final. So I think that’s something that we kind of want to replicate and use it to our advantage.”



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