The road to Canada
It was a perfect ten for England on the road to Canada, as they won all of their qualifying matches against Ukraine, Wales, Turkey, Belarus and Montenegro, despite changing coaches four games into the campaign. In total they scored 52 goals, with Eniola Aluko netting a quarter of them (13) and conceded just once in 900 minutes of football.
The Three Lionesses scored 19 unanswered goals against Montenegro, with the only blot on the copybook being Olha Ovdiychuk's 63rd minute consolation in a 2-1 win over Ukraine in Lviv.
Strengths and style
Expect to see a new-look England to the one which played at Germany 2011, as the likes of Alex Greenwood, Demi Stokes and Lizzie Durack were all handed their first caps in qualifying, while Lianne Sanderson and Jo Potter were invited in from the international wilderness. As well as the youngsters, England may have seasoned pros in the ranks with Alex Scott and Fara Williams, who both boast over 100 caps.
This is a dynamic England team with plenty of pace and power going forward, with plenty of players, including Toni Duggan capable of creating a moment of magic out of nothing. The blend is working well, with coach Mark Sampson delighted at how his team have embraced his new ideas..
Mark Sampson was appointed as Hope Powell's successor in December 2013 and will be just 32 years old when he leads England into the FIFA Women's World Cup™. Previously in charge of Bristol Academy, Sampson has been credited with bringing a more technical and creative side to the team's play, while encouraging a club style environment off the pitch.
FIFA Women's World Cup record
- This will be England's fourth appearance at a FIFA Women's World Cup
- On their previous three occasions in 1995, 2007 and 2011 they have reached the quarter-finals.
What they said
"People can expect a team that is going to be ready. We have been preparing even before we qualified. If we don’t get out of the group I think people will see it as a negative thing, but we can only play against the teams we’ve been handed to in the group. We will put ourselves individually in the best physical, mental and technical shape. Mark and his staff give us the best opportunities to be at the best we can be. That shows in the games we’ve already played," Lianne Sanderson, England forward