Euros 2022: Ella Toone says England want to make fans proud

Euros 2022: Ella Toone says England want to make fans proud

Ella Toone says England want to keep making the fans proud with victory in their Euro 2022 semi-final.

The hosts will face either Sweden or Belgium at Bramall Lane on Tuesday after coming from behind to beat Spain in the quarter-final on Wednesday.

Substitute Toone scored an 84th-minute equaliser before Georgia Stanway’s winner in extra time.

The midfielder says the feeling after her leveller was “probably the best I’ve ever had in football”.

There were 28,994 fans in attendance at Brighton’s Amex Stadium, and a peak television audience of 7.6 million watched on BBC One.

That was up on the four million who tuned in for the Lionesses’ 8-0 group-stage win against Norway, and Manchester United’s Toone says “it would be amazing” to recreate similar scenes in the semi.

“For all of us it would be amazing to get that win in the semi-final,” said the 22-year-old. “[The quarter-final] was really special in front of that crowd and every game we’ve played has been amazing, the atmospheres have been unbelievable.

“We’re so grateful for the fans that support us, whether that’s in the stadium or at home, and we just want to keep making them proud.”

It has been announced that the semi-final will be screened at Trafalgar Square in London, with a capacity of 5,000 fans.

Toone added: “Hopefully we see everyone’s beers flying around and that they’re enjoying the game, and we’re just making them proud, that’s the main thing, and we’re inspiring the next generation.

“Hopefully we can go on and put on another big performance.

“I think we’re getting more and more fans involved, everyone’s just loving it and enjoying it, and I’m sure we’ll have even more fans supporting us in the semis.”

‘We are a united nation’

The Lionesses have reached the semi-finals in each of their last three tournaments, while the men went one step further and finished as runners-up at the Euros last summer.

Wednesday’s match-winner Stanway says some of the players have received messages of support and advice from the England men’s team showing “we’re definitely a united nation”.

“We’ve got a few messages off the men, just supporting us and willing us all the way, saying they’re coming to the next match,” said Stanway, who has joined Bayern Munich after leaving Manchester City this summer.

“We’ve had just certain messages off Declan Rice, just the lads that were involved last year. They’re just kind of giving us tips on momentum, taking it forward and just the support really.”

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