Mark Sampson targets record World Cup run at Canada 2015

Sunday 07 Dec 2014
England head coach Mark Sampson
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Mark Sampson says he wants to take England Women further than they have ever been in a World Cup.

The head coach was speaking after his Three Lions side were drawn in Group F for Canada 2015, alongside France, Mexico and Colombia.

England will open up against the French in Moncton on Tuesday 9 June, followed by Mexico in the same city four days later.

World Cup schedule

v France, Tuesday 9 June, Moncton
v Mexico, Saturday 13 June, Moncton
v Colombia, Wednesday 17 June, Montreal

The final group game against Colombia will take place in Montreal on Wednesday 17 June.

Under former boss Hope Powell, England reached the last eight of the World Cup in 2007 and 2011.

“There are very small margins that games are decided upon and you can put extra pressure on yourselves so you can’t always set absolute targets," said Sampson.

“But we're aware England have never progressed beyond the quarter finals and that's a big motivation for us to try to break that record.

“The one thing I do know is that this team will make the country proud. 

"I'm sure, come next summer, people will get behind this team because of the values they epitomise.”

England Women

Alex Scott in action against France this year

England have recent history with France and Mexico, having met both nations in Germany three years ago. They drew 1-1 with the Central Americans in the group stage before bowing out on penalties to Les Bleus.

France also defeated England at Euro 2013 and in this year's Cyprus Cup final.

England made it to Canada by winning all ten qualifiers, a feat also managed by France.

Colombia are the lowest ranked team in the group, but they were the only undefeated team in South American qualifying and conceded just two goals during the whole campaign, so Sampson is wary of the threat that all three teams possess.

He added: “It's a really exciting draw for everyone.

England Women

England lost 2-0 to France in the Cyprus Cup Final in March

“Anyone we were going to play would be tough but to face France, a top-tier nation, will be difficult, and two teams with very different styles to ours.

“It's a big challenge for the team but we feel it is a group we can be competitive in and our aim is to go there and attempt to top our group.

“They are teams who will bring different challenges and we'll be prepared for that.”

The World Cup will kick-off with Canada v China in Vancouver on Saturday 6 June. The Final will take place on Sunday 5 July.

By Glenn Lavery in Ottawa, Canada