Lianne Sanderson believes England’s Cyprus Cup success will make other nations take notice of Mark Sampson’s side ahead of this summer’s World Cup.
The Arsenal striker scored the only goal of the game as England defeated Canada 1-0 in the final of the annual friendly tournament.
The Three Lions get their World Cup campaign under way against France on Tuesday 9 June, and after back-to-back defeats by Germany and USA, match-winner Sanderson believes England’s performances in their four matches on the Mediterranean proves they are back on track.
The Cyprus Cup
Wednesday 11 March
She said: "Every single trip we are getting better and better.
"After coming off the back of two defeats I think we needed to win this competition to show we are still a force to be reckoned with.
"Let’s not forget – Canada are a top, top nation and we beat them in a final. So I think that does show that we can win against some big teams when it matters most."
Sanderson collected Jordan Nobbs’s through ball, via Jodie Taylor’s deft flick, and curled a shot past Canada goalkeeper Erin McLeod to clinch the cup.
It was her second goal of the tournament following her header against Finland on the opening day.
But she refused to take all the accolades for the victory.
She added: "It’s always the goalscorers that get the credit but it was a massive team performance against Canada and thankfully I was on hand to score the goal.
"Mark and the staff have been preparing us all trip for this game. Our objective this whole week, from minute one, was to win this tournament and we’ve done that.
"It doesn’t matter that this is just a friendly tournament. Every team in this competition wanted to win it.
"Mark has us preparing [for] every single game like it’s a cup final. We played every game like it was a cup final and we know we have to do that in the World Cup."
Next up for England is a match against China at Manchester City’s new Academy Stadium on Thursday 9 April.
Tickets for the China match are on sale now, priced £5 for adults and £2.50 for concessions. Tickets are available via www.MCFC.co.uk/Tickets or in person at the Manchester City box office at Etihad Stadium
Read more at http://www.thefa.com/news/england/womens/2015/mar/cyprus-cup-final-canada-lianne-sanderson#1H83lP5cvBpgqEfd.99
photos Janos Schmidt