Rampant Lionesses must stay sharp, says Toni Duggan

Wednesday 20 Aug 2014
Toni Duggan, right, Jordan Nobbs and Lianne Sanderson celebrate success against Sweden
Toni Duggan says the England squad coming together so soon after their success against Sweden is the perfect way to maintain momentum.

The Lionesses met at St. George’s Park on Sunday – two weeks to the day since their stunning 4-0 victory against the side ranked fifth in the world - and the Manchester City striker says the squad is still buzzing from the victory.

Wales v England

2015 FIFA Women's World Cup qualifier
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She said: “We’ve come into this off the back of the Sweden game which was a great result for the team. It’s good that we’re getting together again so quickly after that result and performance. 

“But the fact that it’s only been a week or two means we’ve been able to get straight back into it and it’s like we’ve never been away. That can only be a positive.”

England left St. George’s Park on Tuesday and travelled to their Cardiff base ahead of Thursday’s game against Wales at Cardiff City Stadium.

Mark Sampson’s side need one point from their remaining two World Cup qualifiers to book their place at next summer’s finals in Canada.

And Duggan says that while the prospect of securing their place this week is an exciting one, she and her team-mates must not assume it is a done deal.

Toni Duggan scored the last time England played Wales


“We’re keen to show that level of performance consistently instead of it just being a one-off,” she added.

“It would be amazing, even just to help the team get there would be an incredible feeling. 

“Of course it’s every player’s dream to go to a World Cup and to do well at a World Cup. 

“As long as we get our performance right on Thursday then, and only then, can we start looking at booking our places on the plane." 

England beat Wales in the reverse fixture at The Den in October – with Duggan on the scoresheet.

“We’re keen to show that level of performance consistently instead of it just being a one-off”

Toni Duggan 

But despite the Lionesses's rampant form, the Merseyside-born forward finished by saying that they are taking nothing for granted.

“We won 2-0 but they put in a good fight and they lost a couple of players to injury as well. 

"I think it will be a different and difficult game – they’re the home team and I’m sure they’ll have the crowd behind them. 

“But I’m confident that if we play the way that we’ve been playing I don’t think many teams could stop us.

“We’re just going to go out there and be positive and if we can do that we’ll be able to get the point we need and be on that plane to Canada.”

By Jamie Reid Senior Writer