It has been a whirlwind few years for England U19s manager, Gemma Davies. From being handed the Head Coach role at Aston Villa back in 2018 to now being fully immersed in international youth football, it has been a learning curve for the young manager as she looks to establish her career in the sport.
“Relentless”, “attacking” and “exciting” were just a few of the words Gemma Davies, England U19s manager, used to describe her group of players on the eve of their first international championship. They showed these characteristics in abundance in a winning opening display – a 4-1 victory against Norway – that will have instilled a huge amount of confidence in this young side.
Under the guidance of Gemma Davies, England’s U19s will get their European Championships campaign underway on Monday afternoon in Ostrava. Manchester United’s Tara Bourne is one the strong 20-player squad that is brimming with potential from back to front. We caught up with the Young Lioness ahead of a big summer:
We’re used to managers and players playing down big or notable fixtures. “It’s just another game” they’ll say, “We’ll focus on ourselves”. But there is no denying that tomorrow’s friendly is going to be something special with it being the first time that England manager, Sarina Wiegman, will face her old side and homeland, the Netherlands.
In football, as in life, things have a habit of coming full circle. On the eve of England’s second international friendly against the Netherlands, Rachel Daly is facing the prospect of receiving her 50th cap at the home of the club that has played such an integral part of her life.
With three weeks before the European Championships begin, it was decision day for Sarina Wiegman as she narrowed down her England squad from 28 to 23. A hard task for any manager but particularly one who is so in the spotlight ahead of a home Euros.
Since March 2020, Covid has disrupted everyone’s lives as the world came to a halt. Football followed with the resumption of play inevitably staggered across all pathways.
With the impact of the pandemic hitting disabled people and their ability to take part in sport, the FA have launched “Football Your Way” to enable a return to activity for people with a disability. It is a plan designed around seven pillars – FA Culture; Participation; Talent Pathway; National Teams; Coaching Development; Marketing and Communications; and Partnerships.
“It is a very special moment being a childhood fan, being at the Emirates and scoring an important goal like that. You work with a player every day and they get to live a moment like this. We’re all very happy for the goal as a team but also for Lotte as an individual and understand that it’s a special moment.”
As Arsenal manager Jonas Eidevall alluded to, football has a habit of tugging at those heart strings. Those special moments it creates were no better illustrated than when Lotte Wubben-Moy found herself in space in the box to hammer home a valuable equaliser for her side. Having come through the Academy and an Arsenal fan through and through, it was the perfect script for the young defender’s first start at the Emirates.
“I have to say I was blown away with the girls in the second half the way they attacked the game…I thought physically, we just stepped up so many levels, and arguably could have scored more goals against a really dangerous team in Chelsea.”
Gareth Taylor was delighted with his Manchester City side as they lifted their fourth Continental Cup trophy, the second piece of silverware under his stewardship. His satisfaction was warranted after a second half performance which saw City dispatch of Chelsea in a way rarely seen these days.