England’s Lionesses will start their FIFA Women’s World Cup campaign when they lock horns with Scotland in just six days’ time in the south of France. For Chelsea Women’s Millie Bright, it will be a special moment when she walks onto the pitch to represent her country for the first time at a World Cup.
We sat down and spoke with the Blues central defender prior her journey to France with her Lionesses team-mates…
How excited are you to be going to this tournament?
‘I don’t think words will ever be enough to say how I feel about going to the World Cup because this will be my first - I’m super excited to experience my first World Cup.
‘The potential we’ve got to go and win it just adds extra excitement on top of that.’
What does it mean to be selected?
‘Every time I pull on the England shirt it’s a massive honour and it’s a proud moment to even be wearing the shirt, but to be selected to go to the World Cup is massive and I never take my spot for granted.
‘I always want to feel like I’ve earnt my spot and it’s been a challenging year for me, especially with injuries, so I’m super proud to have made the squad - I’m grateful for the opportunity.’
Who do you think the favourites are in the group?
‘I’d like to think we are the favourites in the group and I think a lot of people will say Japan because of their qualities and experience, but then I think Scotland are going to be a very challenging opposition – it’s going to be a tough one, I don’t think there’s one team that can kind of just take the lead, but I definitely think ourselves are one of the favourites.’
How about the favourites of whole competition?
‘Without question the USA are always going to be up there. Then the likes of Germany and France because of the experience and the success that they’ve had at these tournaments, without a doubt they are always going to be up there.
‘But I think we are now at a level to compete with that. And then you have got countries like Sweden and Norway who are very difficult teams to beat, so I do think there is going to be a lot of change this year.’
Tell us your favourite international moment…
‘I feel like my biggest game was when we played France in the 2017 Euros, we weren’t the favourites to go through and especially in that game against France. To come up against that sort of opposition and beat them was amazing.’
Will you be taking any home comforts with you for the duration of your tournament campaign?
‘My mum always gets me a few little bits to take away with me and I have a bracelet. My mum gave it to me and it says ‘dream big’ and it’s got my number 4 on. It’s from when I first signed for Chelsea and that doesn’t leave my side – that will definitely be coming on the plane with me.’
The Lionesses group matches are as follows:
Sunday 9 June
England v Scotland – Stade de Nice, Nice (17:00)
Friday 14 June
England v Argentina – Stade Oceane, Le Harve (20:00)
Wednesday 19 June
Japan v England – Nice - Stade de Nice, Nice (20:00)
You can follow live coverage all of England’s fixtures, including every World Cup match across the BBC’s TV, radio, the Red Button and online platform.