- Lucy Bronze reflects on her goal against Norway at Canada 2015
- She discusses potentially playing in a new England back four
- Follow the Live Blog for #NORENG
Lucy Bronze claims the goal she netted against Norway at Canada 2015 lit up her profile, and propelled her to earn a place among the world’s best players. While the defender says it’s unlikely she’ll be challenging top scorers such as Ellen White for a place on tomorrow’s score-sheet, she is backing England’s fresh depth to be a key to victory in their FIFA Women’s World Cup™ quarter-final.
“I think that game was quite iconic in itself, as an England team had never won a knockout game,” Bronze told FIFA, recalling the 2-1 win over Norway in Canada. “That sounds quite funny when you speak about it now, and look at where this England team is now, [but] we had never won a knockout game and were facing Norway, who were a really top team as they are now.
“They had some top players, they were a real test, and I think they were probably the favourites in that game. We had a terrible first half, but we got back into it in the second half. I scored a goal I’d never scored before, have never scored since, but it was something for me personally which set my career alight a little bit.
“People say, ‘Are you going to score against Norway again?’, and I say ‘Well, I play fullback so I don’t really know!’ People around the world know my name now more than ever before, having made certain lists of players and world XIs, and others tend to play harder against me now, but I play harder against them. I’ve always said I enjoy a challenge, so I enjoy it even more now.”
England coach Phil Neville, an advocate of rotating his team, may be forced into making changes as captain Steph Houghton recovers from an ankle injury picked up against Cameroon and Millie Bright recovers from a virus.
Bronze may find herself in a different back four if Abbie McManus and Leah Williamson come in for the doubtful centre-backs, but is confident anyone can step up.
“We know Phil likes to change the team around and put people in different positions,” she said, “but we have so many great players. Every game he says he is playing his strongest team and you might think, ‘Well, that’s odd because you’ve played four different ones’, but it’s true, and we are all ready to play.
“We obviously have fresher legs considering they played extra-time [against Australia] and they play predominantly the same starting XI every time. Yet there are always pros and cons.
“They’ll see it as a pro that they have got a team which plays together, knows each other’s movements and how to defend together. For me they have that familiarity of playing together in so many games, but I think we will look at it that we have the fresher legs.”