29 July 2017

England head coach Gareth Southgate wishes the Lionesses good luck ahead of their Euro 2017 quarter-final clash against France on Sunday

ENGLAND boss Gareth Southgate has sent his best wishes to the Lionesses ahead of their quarter-final clash with France on Sunday.

Speaking at a Vauxhall event at Thurlow Nunn in Milton Keynes, Southgate met the Woburn and Wavendon Lionesses Under 10’s and answered their questions in a live question and answer session.

Gareth Southgate has heaped praise on the England women’s side ahead of their match with France
PA:Press Association
He has wished the Lionesses good luck as they gear up for their quarter-final clash on Sunday
PA:Press Association

The 46-year-old said: “It is fantastic to see the Lionesses top their group with a 100% record.

“I know everybody at St. George’s Park has enjoyed watching the team’s progression under Mark Sampson and I’m pleased that all their hard work on and off the pitch has put them in such a strong position in the tournament.

“There is no doubt that they are the form team and can go all the way in this tournament and both myself and the senior men’s team would like to wish them all the best for the knockout stages.”

Southgate then dished out the major news… that his favourite biscuits are custard creams, before he was prevented with a packet.

England’s 2-1 victory against Portugal on Thursday night ensured they’d be facing their fierce rivals on Sunday night.

A wonder goal from Barcelona striker Toni Duggan on her 50th appearance was cancelled out by a goal from Carolina Mendes.

The England women side in training ahead of their crucial clash against Spain in Euro 2017
PA:Press Association

Toni Duggan celebrates her early opener for England against Portugal in the European Championships
Toni Duggan celebrates her early opener for England against Portugal in the European Championships
Rex Features

However Nikita Parris restored the lead for England just after the break, as she poked in a close-range effort after waltzing through the Portugal back-line.

It was the first time that any England side – men or women, have finished a group stage with three wins from three since the 1982 World Cup.

Aside from beating Portugal who finished bottom of Group D, they also thrashed Scotland 6-0, before triumphing over Spain 2-1.

England haven’t beaten France since 1974, and have tasted defeat against them in their last three major competitions – last losing to them in the group stages in the 2015 World Cup.

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Jermaine Jenas is sprayed by sprinklers as Clare Balding interviews him on the pitch during England Women's Euro 2017 coverage
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