National Coach Hope Powell pleased with the way her side began their Cyprus Cup campaign
England 4-2 Italy
3.30pm GMT, Wednesday 6 March 2013
by Glenn Lavery
Hope Powell congratulated her players for the way they went about defeating Italy in their Cyprus Cup opener.
Debutant Jordan Nobbs put England ahead with a sumptuous 20-yard effort before an Elisa Camporese double gave the Italians the advantage.
Steph Houghton levelled matters with a header before Jess Clarke and Ellen White sealed a 4-2 win.
Powell said: "It’s nice to get off to a good start and the manner in which we played was really pleasing.
“They played the way we asked them to and it worked. Everybody was on their game.
"It is always tough against the Italians but we coped very well and played well in patches.
"We were disappointed to concede the two goals where I felt we just switched off but that highlights that concentration is really important at this level.”
Powell reserved some words of praise for 20-year-old Nobbs who got her first taste of senior international football, following a prolonged and largely successful spell in the England youth teams, including helping the U19s win the European Championship in 2009.
Powell said of Nobbs: "She did very well. I wanted to give her a debut and I was thinking of taking her off after 45 [minutes] but it was good for her to play 90 at this level.
“I thought she did very, very well. She always wanted to get on the ball and the fact she scored gave her a lot of confidence. I'm really pleased for her.”
England will face Scotland, who lost 1-0 to New Zealand in Wednesday’s other game in their second Group A match on Friday, and the National Coach is expecting another difficult encounter.
She added: "I think they got a few injuries against New Zealand which is unfortunate but whatever team they put out we know it will be a tough, physical game.
“It will really test us so we are going to have to prepare diligently as we always do and hopefully we'll do well.”
1 Karen Bardsley, 2 Alex Scott (C), 3 Steph Houghton, 5 Sophie Bradley (12 Fara Williams, 46), 8 Anita Asante, 9 Eniola Aluko (20 Toni Duggan, 68), 10 Kelly Smith (4 Jill Scott, 79), 11 Rachel Yankey (14 Ellen White, 68), 15 Jess Clarke (7 Karen Carney, 80), 17 Jordan Nobbs, 18 Laura Bassett
Substitutes not used: 13 Siobhan Chamberlain, 6 Casey Stoney, 16, Rachel Unitt.