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England reach Cyprus Cup Final
 Women's Football News 12 Mar 2013
 
England 3 New Zealand 1
England are in the Cyprus Cup final after coming from behind to beat New Zealand 3-1 in Nicosia.

The Lionesses headed into the game knowing only victory would do after a win and a draw, against Italy and Scotland, in their previous group games.

However, they fell behind after Amber Hearn capitalised on Rachel Yankey's loose pass to fire the 'Football Ferns' ahead after just seven minutes. But two goals in three minutes from Ellen White (71) and Eniola Aluko (73) put Hope Powell's side ahead midway through the second half while Toni Duggan sealed the win in the last minute. Those three goals capped a dominant second-half performance by England who go into Wednesday's final against Canada (a repeat of the 2009 final) having scored eleven goals so far in this tournament.

Yankey and Aluko both called New Zealand stopper Erin Naylor into action early on as the Three Lions started brightly. But they found themselves 1-0 down soon after when Hearn collected Yankey's misplaced ball to Jill Scott, evaded Sophie Bradley's sliding tackle and whipped a shot into Siobhan Chamberlain's top right hand corner.

Yankey and Aluko were involved in England's next two chances with Naylor equal to both efforts yet again.

Three changes at the break gave England fresh impetus at the start of the second half as Rachel Unitt, Fara Williams and Anita Asante came on for Steph Houghton, Karen Carney and Casey Stoney. Unitt was involved almost immediately as her long throw was flicked on in the box by Jill Scott and Jess Clarke forced Naylor into another save at her near post.

New Zealand's Hannah Wilkinson tried her luck from the edge of the box and Chamberlain let the ball creep wide of the upright.

England came close to netting the equaliser just before the hour mark as Scott teed up Williams 18 yards out, only for the Liverpool midfielder to sidefoot a low shot just past the post.

The equaliser eventually came after 71 minutes as the recently introduced White picked up Aluko's pass on the right, broke into the box and unleashed an angled drive into the far corner. It was her third goal in three Cyprus Cup matches.

England were ahead two minutes later as Aluko cracked a shot into the roof of the net after Alex Scott's high ball fell kindly for her inside the area.

The Kiwis almost levelled with a couple of minutes remaining as Powell's team failed to properly clear a corner, but Hearn's shot hit the angle of post and bar and Alex Scott blocked the follow up.

Duggan secured the victory in the final minute as she beat Naylor to Williams's long ball through the centre and rolled the ball into the empty net.

England: Siobhan Chamberlain, Alex Scott, Steph Houghton (sub Rachel Unitt 45mins), Jill Scott, Sophie Bradley (sub Laura Bassett 66mins), Casey Stoney (sub Anita Asante 45mins), Karen Carney (sub Fara Williams 45mins), Eniola Aluko, Rachel Yankey (sub Toni Duggan 79mins), Jess Clarke (sub Ellen White 69mins), Jordan Nobbs. Subs not used: Karen Bardsley, Dunia Susi, Rachel Brown, Rachel Williams.

 
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