England Women underdogs against hosts Canada for a place in the World Cup semi-finals
England’s campaign began with a 1-0 defeat against France, although the Three Lionesses are now picking up a head of steam after three straight 2-1 victories.
Having overcome Mexico in a nervy group encounter, England Women then beat Colombia by the same scoreline before a last sixteen win over Norway to book their quarter final spot.
Mark Sampson’s team are now dreaming of going all the way and the draw has been favourable to the extent that a place in the final is a definite reality.
Germany, France and the USA are all in the top-half of the draw, with England facing Canada in the last eight before a potential semi-final match against Japan or Australia.
England are now the 16/1 sixth favourites to win the Women’s World Cup, with hosts Canada slight favourites to win in Vancouver although the latter only won one of their group games before beating Cameroon by a single goal.
Sampson was full of superlatives for his team after their win against the Norwegians which saw England come from behind to seal the victory.
“The first emotion is really a sense of pride,” said the 32-year-old. “To show the character and resilience to come back from a goal down is incredible.
“Let’s not forget the environmental conditions, the weather was pretty warm. The players were immense to overcome everything and come back. Big credit to Norway for the first half though. We were reasonably fortunate to come in 0-0 at half-time but in the second half our performance was far better, we managed to change the game from the bench and in the end we were deserved winners.
“We’ve got to take on an excellent Canadian team in front of a partisan crowd,” said Sampson. “Credit to John for the way he organises them. We’re going to have to produce another massive England performance.
“Norway was a big win for our country. But we’ll enjoy tonight and a couple of days off. We’ll enjoy some time out now but be want to continue this journey. We’re in a good place now. This team is determined to continue to inspire the next generation.”
England are 12/5 with Paddy Power to beat the Canadians and will be once again practicing their penalties should the game go the distance, with the hosts having conceded just one goal in four games.