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Women's Football News
Suzanne Grant joined an elite group of footballers last week when she won her 100th cap for Scotland and marked the landmark in style by scoring against Olympic Champions, the United States.
The goal turned out to be a consolation in a 3-1 defeat but the friendly international in Nashville is one that Suzanne will always treasure. "When I stepped out on the pitch for my 100th cap it was the best feeling," she told Women's Soccer Scene. "You work hard to get up to that number so I was especially pleased as I feel it was a great achievement for myself.
"It was just a bonus to get there and play at the start but as the years went on, I started thinking that I'm getting nearer to a hundred caps. When I came on against the USA, the feeling was special for me so I had a great time."
It took Suzanne twelve years to reach her century but she still has fond memories of her debut for her country. "It was against Northern Ireland and I scored two goals," she recalled. "I was sixteen, so still a baby! I played on the right of midfield and it was in Dumfries, so [it was] on my home turf."
Looking back on the double header against the USA, Suzanne was more than satisfied with the two performances despite the 4-1 and 3-1 losses. "We did great," she insisted. "There are small margins - obviously these players are full time professionals and they are Olympic Champions right now.
"I think we worked really hard because we are not fully fit right now, this is our pre-season. If that's what we can do against them when not being in season, then next time we play them when we're fully fit, we can match them.
"They (USA) had great finishers and they are all class players. We couldn't have done anything about any of the goals they scored, none of them were errors. Every goal they scored you could clap, they were world class finishes and they deserved the two wins."
Suzanne came on as a second half substitute and pulled a goal back for her side with nine minutes left, producing a neat finish past star goalkeeper Hope Solo. "She's the best goalkeeper in the world right now so from a striker's point of view, it was the best feeling to score a goal past her," smiled Suzanne. "It was a great delivery from Emma Mitchell which I took on the volley and she was scrambling across the goal."
Suzanne was not the only player to chalk up a milestone during the match. FIFA World Player of the Year Abby Wambach made her 200th international appearance and she also marked the occasion with a goal before providing Suzanne with a treasured memento. "She gave me her 200th cap shirt and the flowers that she got and it was really nice of her, she's really down to earth," she said. "It put a little dampener on my 100th, knowing that she had two, but we both scored in the game. She took my top and I took hers - it was great to have the best player in the world's shirt and I am delighted.
"Abby is the player you look up to and she is my idol. I've been watching her since I was young, every day is a learning day and watching her play is something I learn from."
So during her international career so far, have there been any significant highlights and disappointments? "I can't really pick any of them but winning my 100th cap against the Olympic Champions and coming on and scoring past them is definitely the highlight of my career right now," replies Suzanne. "I just want the team to progress and they have done so - everybody's fighting for a place in the squad now and we have a strong team."
In contrast, there was the shattering disappointment of conceding a last minute goal to Spain which denied them a place in this year's Euro 2013 Finals. "To get so close and have it taken from you with the last kick of the ball was heartbreaking but we're past that now," she said. "We've taken the positives from that game - we were never favourites against Spain and I think we deserved to win and should have been there. But we can move on from there and hopefully next time we don't make the error and finish the game off."
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