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England hit four to mash Swedes
 Women's Football News 3 Aug 2014
 
England hit four to mash Swedes - 3 Aug 2014 - Women's Football NewsEngland 4 (Carney 36,80, Kirby 53, Sanderson 68) Sweden 0
England continued their fine run of form with a resounding 4-0 victory over Sweden in Hartlepool. 
 
A brace from Karen Carney, a debut strike from Fran Kirby and another by Lianne Sanderson gave Mark Sampson's side a stunning victory against the side ranked fifth in the world.
 
However the day belonged to Fara Williams who won a record-breaking 130th cap, taking her clear of Rachel Yankey's record to become the most capped England player of all time. Among those also handed starting berths were debutant duo Kirby of Reading FC Women and Jodie Taylor, who plays her club football in America with Washington Spirit.
 
Within a minute of the start, the pair combined and Kirby had the chance to mark her first ever touch in an England shirt with a goal. Taylor found herself in space on the right flank and squared to Kirby. The ball struck a Sweden defender and fell perfectly to the youngster, but she was unable to direct her strike towards goal and it flew over.
 
As the hosts dominated the early exchanges, Kirby and Taylor again combined to force a spectacular save from Hedvig Lindahl in the Sweden goal. This time Kirby was the provider as she played Taylor in with the most delicate of passes - but Lindahl, who was making her 100th international appearance, was alert and palmed her effort away to safety.
 
England were in control without being able to break the deadlock and there was a warning for them at the other end. As Lotta Schelin cut inside on the left wing, she fired a dangerous ball into the box and Karen Bardsley was just able to get fingertips onto it and divert it onto the woodwork. The visitors were beginning to find their feet in the game but the Lionesses remained in control, and got their reward just after the half hour mark.
 
Carney was bundled to the ground by Sofia Jakobsson in the box as she rose to meet a floated cross from Jordan Nobbs and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Carney got to her feet to take the penalty and although her original effort struck the inside of the post, she was able to scramble home the rebound after an almighty tussle in the box involving four Swedish defenders.
 
At the start of the second half, Carney and Kirby both drew spectacular saves from Carola Soberg - who was among three Swedish half time substitutions - within moments of the restart. But Kirby, lively and troublesome throughout, did not have to wait long to open her England account.
 
The youngster found herself in space in the box with a trademark drop of the shoulder, beat her marker and fired low past the Sweden goalkeeper to double the Lionesses' lead.
 
England continued to press and hurry their illustrious opponents, never allowing them to settle on the ball and denying them the opportunity to fashion any sort of rhythm to their play.
 
Sanderson embodied this spirit throughout the game and on 68 minutes she got her name on the scoresheet as she picked up the ball from Demi Stokes and fired low to Soberg's right to make it 3-0.
 
Carney was again in the thick of the action with ten minutes to go. After a neat interchange on the edge of the box she curled a fine right footed effort past the keeper to make it 4-0, and put England truly out of sight. 
 
England: Karen Bardsley, Alex Scott, Demi Stokes (sub Alex Greenwood 76mins), Fara Williams (sub Jill Scott 76mins), Steph Houghton, Lucy Bronze (sub Laura Bassett 71mins), Jordan Nobbs, Karen Carney, Jodie Taylor (sub Eniola Aluko 61mins), Lianne Sanderson, Fran Kirby (sub Toni Duggan 61mins). Subs not used: Siobhan Chamberlain, Gemma Bonner, Jo Potter, Jade Moore, Carly Telford, Natasha Dowie, Jess Clarke.

Sweden: Hedvig Lindahl (sub Carola Soberg 45mins), Emma Berglund (sub Linda Sembrant 69mins), Lina Nilsson, Caroline Seger (sub Emma Lundh 60mins), Nilla Fischer (sub Amanda Ilestedt 37mins), Sara Thunebro, Therese Sjogran, Lotta Schelin, Kosovare Asllani (sub Lisa Dahlkvist 45mins), Sofia Jakobsson (sub Jenny Hjohlman 45mins), Hanna Folkesson. Subs not used: Antonia Goransson, Fridolina Rolfo, Emilia Appelqvist, Elin Wahlstrom, Magdalena Ericsson.

Photo: Lina Nilsson clears away from Demi Stokes (Julian Barker).

 
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