Five Blues were in international action tonight. Bethany England netted for the Lionesses in their 3-2 friendly versus Czech Republic, Ramona Bachman scored a hat-trick for Switzerland as the recorded a commanding 6-0 victory over Romania in the European Championship qualifiers, while Sophie Ingle and Wales had to settle for a goalless draw in their EURO group stage fixture in Northern Ireland.
Having not featured at all in the Lionesses’ 2-1 defeat to Germany at Wembley Stadium on Saturday, England, Millie Bright and Carly Telford all had a place in Phil Neville’s starting XI against Czech Republic tonight.
Goalkeeper Telford was in between the sticks, Bright was at centre-back alongside Arsenal’s Leah Williamson and England played in the No.9 role.
The Lionesses began slowly and were punished by the hosts after quarter-of-an-hour when Bright and Lucy Bronze switched off to enable Czech striker Tereza Szewieczkova to bury her effort past Telford with ease.
However, the Lionesses responded quickly with two goals in the space of a few minutes. England netted the first goal of the evening for the Lionesses and her second in five England appearances when Lyon’s Nikita Parris caught up with the ball on the by-line to cut it back to England who volleyed from close-range after 17 minutes.
Then three minutes later, Arsenal’s Beth Mead shifted the ball on her right foot and curled one into the far corner to give England a one-goal cushion.
England did not keep hold of the lead for long, in fact for just seven minutes as Szewieczkova of Slavia Prague scored her second of the evening when her left-footed strike flew out of reach of the diving Telford.
England made way for Houston Dash’s Rachel Daly with less than 25 minutes remaining, while Bright and Telford played the full 90 minutes.
The Lionesses had 18 attempts on goal and scored their third goal with four minutes left on the clock to ensure they finished 2019 with a victory. Williamson received the ball on the edge of the box and her effort took a big deflection off a Czech defender which got the better of Barbora Votikova in goal.
It was a successful night for Switzerland and Bachmann as they thumped Romania 6-0 in their Euro qualifier, making it four wins out of four in Group H. The Swiss player of the year scored the two first-half goals and then bagged herself a hat-trick when she scored a fourth of the match.
Bachmann’s opener was sensational. The Swiss skipper twisted and turned past her marker in midfield and unleashed an arrow of a shot that found its way past the gloves of the Romanian shot-stopper with 26 minutes on the clock.
The second came on the stroke of half-time and her third was equally as spectacular as her first. Bachmann latched onto a diagonal ball that was threaded through nicely from midfield. She took a touch and blasted across goal and into the top corner.
In Belfast, it finished all-square for Ingle and her Wales side who were unable to come away with three points in their European Championships qualifier against Northern Ireland. Jane Ludlow’s side currently sit in second place of Group C behind Norway after winning two and drawing two, with four qualifying matches left to play in the new year.
You can watch our internationals and the rest of the Chelsea team in WSL action on Sunday against Manchester United at Kingsmeadow. It kicks off at 2pm and tickets are still available but selling fast. Three days later we host Tottenham Hotspur in the Continental Tyres Cup which has a kick-off of 7pm.