England Women suffer heartache in Cyprus Cup final
- 12 March 2014 19:37
- Posted by @porter_mcfc
England Women were defeated 2-0 by France in the Cyprus Cup final.
A trio of City players were involved as the Three Lions were prevented from retaining the Cyprus Cup crown they won in 2013 by a determined French side. Toni Duggan and Steph Houghton started the game, while Jill Scott entered the fray after 51 minutes as Mark Sampson sought to reduce the two goal deficit.
France started strongly and were ahead within six minutes, after Gaetane Thiney connected with a cross and poked home from close range, and things got worse for England when Camile Abily doubled the advantage 12 minutes later.
The Three Lions steadied the ship but could not create many attacking opportunities and failed to find a route back into the game.
This was the first defeat under boss Mark Sampson, but reaching the final of this tournament is sure to stand the team in good stead as they prepare for a World Cup Qualifier with Montenegro on 5 April.
Elsewhere in the same tournament, Betsy Hassett's New Zealand bowed out with a 1-0 win over Finland in their play off fixture. Hassett started and played 65 minutes as the Football Ferns recorded a first win of 2014.
Finally, Natasha Flint's England under-19s side ended the La Manga tournament with a 1-0 victory over Italy. Following the youngsters' 1-1 draw and 3-2 defeat at the hands of the Republic and Ireland and France, a solitary goal from Sophie Stamp ensured that the Three Lions ended the competition on a high.