Hosts England will head into Euro 2022 14 games unbeaten after the Lionesses defeated Switzerland 4-0 in Zurich to wrap up their warm-ups ahead of next week’s competition.
The visitors were made to wait until 11 minutes into the second half to make the breakthrough, with Alessia Russo – handed a start in the absence of Ellen White – heading home from Rachel Daly’s cross.
Georgia Stanway doubled their advantage from the penalty spot, substitute Beth England made it three with a cool header and Jill Scott wrapped it up in the fourth minute of stoppage-time.
It was another frustrating opening half for England despite their bright start – just like it had been in previous friendlies against Belgium and the Netherlands. The visitors’ best chances came in the first six minutes of the game with the best falling to Manchester United forward Russo who found herself through on goal but couldn’t find a way past goalkeeper Seraina Friedli.
The early signs looked precarious for Switzerland as their defence was carved open easily but England couldn’t make the most of a three-vs-one situation as Lauren Hemp took a touch too many and shot straight at the net-minder.
When Friedli was finally beaten, Ana-Maria Crnogorcevic came to her rescue by clearing Rachel Daly’s goal bound header off the line.
England manager Sarina Wiegman avoided the temptation to make changes at the break when others might have and she was rewarded with the opening goal as Russo peeled away from her marker to head home Daly’s deep delivery.
With Switzerland beginning to tire, the visitors turned the screw and added two more in four minutes. The first came from the spot with Stanway finishing confidently before turning provider, delivering the cross which England finished with a smart header.
Scott wrapped up the scoring in the dying moments of the game.
They may have had to remain patient but it was a worthwhile exercise for England who kick off Euro 2022 next Wednesday at a sold-out Wembley Stadium against Austria. Matches against Norway and Northern Ireland follow in Group A.
TALKING POINT – ENGLAND ARE READY TO PUT ON A SHOW
Six days away from kicking off Euro 2022, England could hardly look in better shape. Three warm-up games saw the Lionesses produce some breath-taking football as they racked up 12 goals, conceding just once – and all against teams who have qualified for the tournament.
The nation heads into the tournament 14 games unbeaten having won six games on the bounce. There are much sterner tests lying ahead but they have shown they have the quality and squad depth to trouble Europe’s best.
With home advantage, and under the guidance of Wiegman – one of the game’s very best coaches – it is easy to see why eighth-ranked England are amongst the competition’s favourites.
PLAYER OF THE MATCH – LEAH WILLIAMSON (ENGLAND)
The debate rages on – is Williamson more suited to playing in defence or midfield? The skipper has the class to play in either position, but judging on this performance she must start at the back. Not only did she snuff out the opposition’s attacks on numerous occasions but she also sparked a number of England’s with her vision and composure on the ball.
Switzerland: Friedli 7, Maritz 4, Buhler 6, Calligaris 5, Aigbogun 5, Crnogorcevic 6, Sow 6, Maendly 5, Walti 5, Reuteler 5, Bachmann 6.. subs: Rinast N/A, Xhemaili N/A, Mauron 5, Marti 5, Terchoun N/A, Humm 5.
England: Earps 6, Daly 7, Greenwood 7, Bright 6, Walsh 7, Williamson 8*, Mead 7, Hemp 7, Stanway 8, Kirby 7, Russo 8.. subs: Carter 6, Scott N/A, Kelly 6, Toone 6, Parris 6, England 7.
56′ – GOAL! SWITZERLAND 0-1 ENGLAND (ALESSIA RUSSO): Finally, the breakthrough! The attack is started by the excellent Williamson out of defence as she spreads it wide to Daly. Her deep delivery finds Russo, who has peeled away from her marker at the far post and she makes no mistake with a cushioned header that sneaks into the bottom corner.
74′ – GOAL! SWITZERLAND 0-2 ENGLAND (GEORGIA STANWAY, PEN): Stanway makes no mistake from the penalty spot, doubling England’s lead with a confident effort.
77′ – GOAL! SWITZERLAND 0-3 ENGLAND (BETH ENGLAND): England are running away with this now! The substitute England gets amongst the goals now, attacking a corner from the right. Kelly, standing in front of the goalkeeper, dummies the ball as it flies into the back of the net.
90’+4 – GOAL! SWITZERLAND 0-4 ENGLAND (JILL SCOTT): There’s still time for Scott to get amongst the goals! Scott gets between the centre-backs to head home at the back post. That will wrap it up nicely!