England boss Phil Neville shook off criticism on a recent visit by United States staff members, who met with the Lionesses in light of the Women’s World Cup semi-final.
Anticipating a much-desired semi-final on Tuesday, England women coach Phil Neville recently laughed off an argued visit by USA staff members. Naturally, this raised suspicion among many regarding Neville’s background plans for his team.
When confronted on the drama, Neville was quick and sharp with his words.
“It’s not a concern. The only thing I would say is it’s not something that I would want my team ops person doing. It’s not something that England would do,” Neville claimed.
“We’re happy with our hotel. We were training, so I hope they enjoyed our hotel. But it’s not something that we’d do, send somebody round to another team’s hotel.”
“But it’s their problem. I’m sure that Jill probably wouldn’t have been happy with that arrangement; I wouldn’t have been if that was my team ops person going around. I’m sure that she will be dealing with their infrastructure within their own discipline, probably.”
“It’s not an unfair advantage. It’ll have no bearing on the game. I actually found it quite funny, I just thought, ‘What are they doing?’ It’s not etiquette really, is it?”
As for the semi-finals, Neville felt free to share his honest thoughts and expectations.
“You go to tournaments to win. I said earlier in the week about semi-finals – nobody cares who loses in a semi-final, it’s all about winning and my players now want to win, so if we don’t get the right result, we will be disappointed.”
“We will feel the disappointment and we’ll see that as a failure – and that’s not me being negative, that’s just our expectation, and our belief and our confidence now and our mindset is about winning.”
Speaking of readiness, though, Skipper Steph Houghton also had a few things to add.
“In terms of our fitness as a team in comparison to 2015, the game has moved on so much since then. For us, fitness is a priority to be competing against the best teams in the world – and we are one of them – and we have shown over this tournament that we can go toe-to-toe with anyone,” as per FourFourTwo.
“Against the USA on Tuesday, it’s going to be the physical attributes that could potentially win us the game.”