England boss Hope Powell is gracious in defeat after the Euro hosts defeat her side 4-1
Sweden 4-1 England
A Women's International
6pm BST, Thursday 4 July 2013
Hope Powell paid tribute to Sweden after the Euro 2013 hosts defeated England 4-1 on Thursday night.
Ellen White put the Three Lions ahead in the 13th minute, but a Lotta Schelin brace and a goal apiece for Antonia Goransson and captain Caroline Seger handed the Swedes an ultimately comfortable win.
It was England’s first defeat since March last year and Powell praised Pia Sundhage’s charges for the way they came from behind to win the game.
The National Coach said: "Credit to Sweden. I thought they performed very well, certainly after going a goal down.
"It was a really good test for us. We were physically outmuscled for large parts. We did well in spells, but Sweden obviously did better.
"They were very quick and they pressed our backline really well in the first part of the game. It took us five or ten minutes to find our feet and we were lucky not to concede early on.
"Then we got to grips with it and we started to play quite well I thought.
"But Sweden clawed their way back and overpowered us. I'll have to watch the game back but I thought they were deserved winners.”
This was England’s final match before they get their European Championship campaign underway against Spain in eight days’ time.
While Powell admits to being upset at the defeat, she was pleased to have had the chance to give some younger players more experience, the likes of substitutes Toni Duggan and Jordan Nobbs.
And the England boss is refusing to panic ahead of the big kick-off next week.
She added: "You would be worried if you were in the tournament but this was a preparation match for us.
“It gave us an opportunity to make a few changes and give a lot of players some minutes.
“While we are disappointed to have lost - we didn't play this fixture to lose - it gave us an opportunity to try new things. It served that purpose very well so I'm not worried.”