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England storm to second victory
 Women's Football News 8 Mar 2014
 
Finland 0 England 3 (Asante 30, Bonner 67, Aluko 72)
England eased to a 3-0 win over Finland in their second Cyprus Cup group match. 
 
Mark Sampson's much changed side took the momentum from their opening day victory over Italy and blew the Finns away with an assured display full of attacking intent.
 
Keen to give minutes to as many of his squad as possible, Sampson changed his entire starting XI from Wednesday. Everton defender Alex Greenwood was handed her full debut, following a ten minute cameo against the Italians, while goalkeeper Lizzie Durack was involved in a senior match day squad for the very first time and Gemma Davison made her first start, almost five years after making her bow as a substitute against Iceland.
 
Just as they did against Italy, England enjoyed more possession and territory in a scrappy opening period, with attacking quartet Jill Scott, Natasha Dowie, Davison and Eniola Aluko showing plenty of confidence in and around the box, while just lacking a killer final ball.
 
The first three decent opportunities all fell to Jill Scott, but the Manchester City midfielder hit each shot over the top of Minna Meriluoto's goal. Aluko then tried her luck from 15 yards out as the Three Lions gradually began to take full control of proceedings, and they eventually took a deserved lead on 30 minutes.
 
Greenwood delivered an inswinging free kick from the left, Gemma Bonner flicked the ball onto the back post and Anita Asante cushioned a volley beyond Meriluoto. It was only the Malmo midfielder's second international goal, on her 68th appearance, and her first since scoring against Norway back in May 2005.
 
England left back Greenwood was showing no sign of nerves on her first senior start and almost marked her special day with a spectacular goal, but her left foot drive from 25 yards crashed back off the bar.
 
Things might have got even better before half time when Davison drove a shot goalwards from just inside the area, only for the overworked Meriluoto to palm the ball to safety.
 
The Liverpool winger almost turned provider shortly after the restart as she slipped a through ball into Birmingham City's Jade Moore, and the right back's near post effort brought the best out of Finland's keeper.
 
Though they tried to press the England back line, Andree Segiertz' side had been outplayed and offered little in the attacking third. However, Finnish right back Susanna Lehtinen sent a rare cross into the box which Sanna Talonen headed back across goal and only Telford's left hand upright prevented the equaliser.
 
That miss was to prove costly as England hit them with two quickfire sucker punches. After Dowie and Jill Scott again peppered their opponent's goal, Greenwood capped an assured performance by delivering a delightful free kick, this time from the right, which Bonner stooped low to head home her maiden England goal.
 
The result was put beyond doubt five minutes later as Aluko dinked a close range shot past Meriluoto following some great build up play and a through ball by substitute Karen Carney.
 
Sampson shuffled his pack late on to see the game out. Established right back Alex Scott came on for Asante which allowed Moore to move into a more familiar central midfield role. There was also a moment to savour for young University of Harvard goalkeeper Durack, who came on with six minutes remaining for her senior team debut.
 
Carney came close to adding a fourth in added time, but Meriluoto produced one final save to keep the scoreline fairly respectable from a Finnish perspective.
 
England, current holders of the Cyprus Cup, now head into Monday's last Group A match against Canada eyeing a place in next Wednesday's final.
 
Finland: Minna Meriluoto, Susanna Lehtinen, Katarina Naumanen (sub Jenna Korhonen 63mins), Annika Kukkonen, Katri Nokso-Koivisto, Emmi Alanen, Nora Heroum (sub Sanna Saarinen 63mins), Sanna Talonen (sub Sanna Ylianttila 76mins), Juliette Kemppi, Anna Westerlund, Adelina Engman (sub Ella Vanhanen 76mins). Subs not used: Tuija Hyyrynen, Laura Kivisto, Vera Varis, Heidi Kivela, Linda Ruutu, Tinja-Riikka Korpela.

England: Carly Telford (sub Lizzie Durack 84mins), Jade Moore, Sophie Bradley, Gemma Bonner, Alex Greenwood, Anita Asante (sub Alex Scott 62mins), Laura Bassett, Gemma Davison (sub Toni Duggan 70mins), Jill Scott (sub Karen Carney 70mins), Eniola Aluko (sub Ellen White 76mins), Natasha Dowie. Subs not used: Siobhan Chamberlain, Demi Stokes.

 
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