Casey Stoney said England will be in much better shape for Euro 2017 after competing in the prestigious SheBelieves Cup.
Mark Sampson’s side fly to Philadelphia on Saturday to take on the top three sides in the FIFA rankings, Germany, France and World Cup holders USA.
And with the European Championship finals just five months away, Stoney, who has been recalled to the squad following an injury lay-off, reckons the Lionesses must stamp their authority across the pond.
- USA, Germany, France, England
- Weds 1 Mar - Tues 7 March 2017
- in Philadelphia, New Jersey and Washington
“You want to pit yourselves against the best and see where you’re at.
“Last year we lost two [matches] and drew one so we want to better that and show what we’re capable of.
“It’s matchday, two-day recovery and then another matchday, including all the travelling so it’s quite a busy schedule but it’s great preparation for tournament football.”
England open up against France at the Talen Energy Stadium on Wednesday 1 March (9pm GMT KO).
They will then travel to the Red Bull Arena to play the host nation on Saturday 4 March (10pm GMT KO) before rounding off against European and Olympic champions Germany at RFK Stadium in Washington on Tuesday 7 March (9pm GMT KO).
Stoney said: “Playing America in New York on a Saturday afternoon in front of a capacity crowd – that’s pressure, and that’s what we want.
“We’ve come so far in the last few years. We want to make sure we’re right tactically going into the Euros and if there’s anything needs tweaking then we’ve got time to do that.”
And the Liverpool centre back had words of praise for fellow defenders Steph Houghton and Lucy Bronze who were nominated for a place on the FIFPro World XI.
Stoney added: “[They are] two players that are worthy of that, especially coming off a fantastic season for Manchester City, going through an FA WSL season unbeaten.
“It just shows how strong the England team is and how strong our league is at the moment.”
Goalkeepers: Karen Bardsley (Manchester City), Siobhan Chamberlain (Liverpool), Mary Earps (Reading).
Defenders: Laura Bassett (Notts County), Millie Bright (Chelsea), Lucy Bronze (Manchester City), Rachel Daly (Houston Dash), Steph Houghton (Manchester City), Jo Potter (Notts County), Alex Scott (Arsenal), Casey Stoney (Liverpool), Demi Stokes (Manchester City).
Midfielders: Isobel Christiansen (Manchester City), Jade Moore (Notts County), Jordan Nobbs (Arsenal), Jill Scott (Manchester City), Fara Williams (Arsenal).
Forwards: Karen Carney (Chelsea), Toni Duggan (Manchester City), Nikita Parris (Manchester City), Jodie Taylor (Arsenal), Rachel Williams (Notts County), Ellen White (Birmingham City).