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ENGLAND 2 (Cederkvist og 74, Smith pen 81)
att: 8,101; at Portsmouth F.C.
England produced one of their best performances for a long time for a notable victory over Denmark and completed their third successive home win and clean sheet.
With Amanda Barr missing, Arsenal striker Ellen Maggs was handed a starting place for the first time whilst Pauline Cope and Casey Stoney returned in place of injured duo Rachel Brown and Leanne Champ.
Denmark forced the first shot inside the first minute, an effort from Louise Hansen which was tipped round the post by Cope but England began to get more of possession and almost forced an opening when a good cross from Rachel Unitt was latched onto by Stoney but Tine Cederkvist blocked before the full back could get in a shot.
Rachel Yankey curled a shot which lacked power and Cederkvist saved comfortably following some good interplay but at the other end there was a scare for England as a misplaced pass allowed Anne Eggers to run away on goal but she wasted the opportunity.
The clearest opportunity so far came on 19 minutes when a Fara Williams free kick was half cleared to the edge of the area where Kelly Smith, in plenty of space, volleyed her shot wide. Moments later Smith was denied a shooting chance by an offside flag after more good play from England, culminating in Williams' slipped through ball.
Cope then made her second good save on the half hour, again from Hansen as she made her way into the area where she got down to block at the near post. Back came England with Williams drilling a left foot shot just wide following a good lay-off by Smith.
England were playing some nice football at times and a good move released Smith on goal but she tried to make too sure with her left foot shot and Cederkvist saved. Smith again threatened with a superb run which took her through five opponents but again her shot could not beat Cederkvist.
The second half began with England launching an early attack and Stoney fired over from 25 yards after a free kick had been cleared. Eggers shot wide at the other end but in the 56th minute England came closest yet to breaking the deadlock when Kristy Moore dispossessed Pedersen and Jody Handley ran at goal before seeing her 20-yard shot come back off the bar, the rebound fell to Moore whose shot was saved. Denmark hit back almost immediately with Lene Jensen toe-poking the ball past Cope but Faye White was on hand to clear the goalbound ball.
A limping Unitt, who had been injured when making a challenge on Mariann Knudsen, was substituted with local girl Corinne Yorston coming on for her first home appearance. The game was now flowing from end-to-end with Janni Johansen having a shot saved and at the other end Moore did well to get away from Knudsen but shot hurriedly over the bar.
Williams had a header saved after more good work from Smith but England were not to be denied . In the 74th minute, a sublime Williams pass picked out Moore on the right where her cross cannoned off Gitte Andersen and was fumbled by Cederkvist and into the back of the net to give England the lead.
Barely a minute later, It was almost 1-1 as a White clearance hit Yorston and dropped at the feet of Jensen in front of goal but Cope did well to block her shot at point blank range.
Nine minutes from time, more good work from the excellent Moore saw her hold the ball up in the area before finding Smith who was barged over by Eggers and a penalty was awarded. Smith picked herself up to plant a left foot shot into the corner of the net to make it 2-0.
Williams saw a goalbound shot charged down from Smith's lay-off as a confident England sought more goals and Chapman shot over from just inside the box but it was a very satisfying night for Hope Powell and her side.
England: Pauline Cope, Casey Stoney, Rachel Unitt, Katie Chapman, Faye White, Mary Phillip, Jody Handley, Fara Williams, Ellen Maggs, Kelly Smith, Rachel Yankey. Subs: Kristy Moore (for Maggs 45 mins), Corinne Yorston (for Unitt 57 mins),
Denmark: Tine Cederkvist, Bettina Falk, Katrine Pedersen, Gitte Andersen, Louise Hansen, Julie Rydahl Bukh, Janni Lumd Johansen, Anne Dot Eggers, Lene Jensen, Mariann Knudsen, Signe Andersen. Subs: Marle Herping (for S.Andersen 67 mins),
Referee: Wendy Toms.
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