Hope Powell is urging fans to cheer on the England Women’s team when they take on Denmark at Fratton Park.
England coach, Hope Powell OBE, is calling on the people of Hampshire to show their support for the England Women’s team when they take on Denmark at Fratton Park in an international friendly, in partnership with Nationwide, tonight.
Hope, who is the first ever full-time National Coach of the England Women's team, is hoping for a big crowd to support the team. The international, which will be broadcasted live on Sky Sports, is part of England’s preparations for the UEFA European Women’s Championship in 2005, for which England automatically qualify as hosts of the tournament.
Hope said: "The team are pleased to be returning to Portsmouth after the excellent support we received two years ago. The people of Hampshire turned out in force and spurred us on to a great victory against the Portuguese that day.
"We are now preparing for the most important event in English women’s football history – the 2005 UEFA European Championship Finals which we are hosting next summer. The players are all competing for their place in the final squad and are determined to prove their worth.
"Denmark are placed higher than us in the world rankings, so will provide tough opposition. We've deliberately chosen to play top quality opposition in our build-up to the Euros and Denmark are another very good side. They base their game on fitness, power and strength and they are sure to provide us with a very good test.
"It was good to end last season on such a positive note. In truth we didn't play really well against the Scots who are still one of the lower-ranked European teams despite the strides they've made in recent years. But I couldn't have too many grumbles about a 5-0 win - and some of our goals were excellent. This will be the first time to put the girls through their international paces since then and I'm sure the players will be looking forward to the game."
A big crowd is expected to Portsmouth FC’s Fratton Park for the second England Women’s international in two years. England last played at Pompey in February 2002, beating Portugal 3-0 in a World Cup qualifier in front of 8,821 fans – which set a record at that time.
England v Denmark
Thursday 19 February 2004
Kick off 7.35pm
Ticket Hotline Number: 023 9261 8777
Adults £3 each
Children and OAP’s £1 each (Under 16’s)
Any budding female footballers wanting to have a go at the beautiful game themselves, should call The FA’s ‘Get Involved’ hotline 0845 310 8555 for an information pack or visit TheFA.com/Women