Perfect start in Cyprus
Tuesday, 28 February, 2012
England come from behind to beat Finland in Cyprus Cup opener.
Two Kelly Smith penalties either side of a Karen Carney goal gave England a 3-1 win over Finland in their opening match of this year's Cyprus Cup.
National Coach Hope Powell handed a first senior cap to Birmingham midfielder Jade Moore, while Sue Smith made her first England appearance since her two-goal salvo against South Korea at last year’s tournament.
England went a goal down after just seven minutes when Annika Kukkonen beat Three Lions goalkeeper Siobhan Chamberlain.
Finland managed to impose themselves on Powell's side early on, although they presented record goal scorer Kelly Smith with the chance to level from the spot on 35 minutes after Steph Houghton was hauled down inside the box, a chance which was gratefully accepted.
The win was achieved courtesy of an improved second-half showing and Carney put England ahead after 50 minutes.
England then took control of proceedings and Kelly Smith sealed the win in the 88th minute, again from the penalty spot, this time because substitute Rachel Williams, on for recently crowned Player of the Year Ellen White, was felled.
The second group game is against Switzerland on Thursday.
England are using this annual friendly tournament as preparation for their Euro 2013 qualifier away to Croatia on 31 March.