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Women's Football News
Fern Whelan was honoured with the Young Player of the Year award last week and is looking ahead to happier times after her season was curtailed by injury.
However the Everton defender's performances for her club and country were sufficient for her to carry off the trophy and she told Women's Soccer Scene: "I'm made up to win the award because I haven't played for much of the season, but I am really happy.
"I didn't really think about it, it didn't cross my mind that I might win as I have been away for so long but when I heard, I was delighted."
Fern captained England under-19 to the UEFA Championship Final against Germany last summer and two of that side were her fellow nominees, Jess Clarke and Sophie Bradley. "We go to the final last year and there were a lot of good players in that tournament, every single one of them was fantastic," she said.
Fern is currently working hard to regain full fitness and revealed that she is progressing well in her recovery. "I've started to run again and am kicking the ball a bit more now," she said. "Fingers crossed, next month I will be back to my best.
"We have got the Community Shield at the start of the season and the World Under-20 Cup in November, so hopefully I'll be back for that."
Whilst out injured, Fern was forced to miss the League Cup Final in which Everton ended their nine-year trophyless spell by beating Arsenal 1-0. "It was frustrating, to be fair," she admitted, "but we did really well to get there. I played in every round, apart from the Final, which was a slight consolation but obviously the final is the big one. Myself, Rachel Brown and Jo Potter were all watching because we were injured but we celebrated as much as we could with the team and everybody kept us involved.
"I think next season, fingers crossed, is going to be a good one for Everton. We have done extremely well to get to the final and win it and to finish in second, so it's looking up for next year."
Fern's main goal is now to be a part of the England under-20 squad for the World Cup in Chile. "Hopefully I can play a part in it," she said. "I want to be out there with the girls and would love nothing more, because we played in the European Championships against Germany in the Final and managed to get to the World Cup and I'd love nothing more than to be there with them."
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