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England wins inaugural Arnold Clark Cup in ‘step toward Euros’

(Alex Caparros/FIFA via Getty Images)

England won the inaugural Arnold Clark Cup on Wednesday, defeating eight-time European champions Germany 3-1 at home for the first time in the team’s history. The win follows up draws with Olympic champion Canada and Spain.

With the win, England finished five points ahead of Spain in the final standings due to goal differential.

Ellen White got the Lionesses on the board first in the 15th minute.

In the 41st minute, Lina Magull got one on the board for Germany on a free kick to tie it at 1-1. It would remain tied until late in the game when Millie Bright, who was moved to the striker position for the final 10 minutes, sent one home in the 84th minute. Fran Kirby would capitalize again for England in the 94th minute to seal the win and the trophy.

After the match, head coach Sarina Wiegman said she thought that it wasn’t even the Lionesses’ best performance of the week.

“We didn’t play a great match today, I think we played better against Spain,” she said. “I think we showed resilience, that’s really satisfying.

“This is a step towards the Euros, we’ll stay neutral. We have grown a lot but we know the opponents in the Euros will be too. We weren’t tight enough on the ball so that was hard for us, but then you can come back to your fundamentals. I am happy with this tournament. We got lots of information about ourselves and where we are in our style of play.”

The Lionesses will now set their sights on the group stage of the UEFA Women’s Euro championship in July. They’ve drawn against Austria, Norway and Northern Ireland.