Wiegman relishing Arnold Clark Cup test as England step up Euros prep
ngland Women boss Sarina Wiegman believes the Arnold Clark Cup will be the perfect litmus test for her Lionesses ahead of this summer’s home European Championship.
The new tournament, which kicks off on Thursday, sees hosts England welcome heavyweights Canada, Germany and Spain as part of a round-robin event.
It was designed to give England tough opposition ahead of the Euros, with Wiegman yet to face a team from the world’s top 10 since she took charge in September of last year.
Now the 52-year-old will get the chance to do exactly that over the next week and she is excited about the challenge ahead.
“We need these games because we want to be exploited in every aspect of the game,” said Wiegman. “So in defence, in possession, in transition moments and you need these opponents to play against.
“That’s really exciting and then after this tournament we will know better where we are at this moment. That’s good to prepare for the Euros.”
England have enjoyed a dream start under Wiegman, winning all six of their World Cup qualifying games and scoring 53 goals without conceding.
Now, though, they get the chance to test themselves against some of the best sides in the world and Wiegman is keen to see how the squad react.
“Of course I was aware of what England was before I came in, but since I have come in we have played games where we were in possession all the time,” she said.
“I think we did really well in those games, although the pressure wasn’t as high as we expect in these upcoming games.
“We have our plan, our technical plan, and we’re trying to develop our style of play. After this tournament, maybe I can tell you a little more about that.”
England kick off their quest to win the Arnold Clark Cup on Thursday, when they take on Canada, and captain Leah Williamson says they have set their sights on going all the way.
“We’re going into the tournament to win it,” she said.
“You don’t enter one not to. It’s the first one so we’ll see what happens, but we definitely want to make it ours, for sure.
“It’s perfect preparation for the summer. It’s a little taster for everyone.”