England seal clean sweep of Euros warm-ups with emphatic win over Switzerland

·19 min read
England seal clean sweep of Euros warm-ups with emphatic win over Switzerland - GETTY IMAGES
England seal clean sweep of Euros warm-ups with emphatic win over Switzerland - GETTY IMAGES

Switzerland 0 England 4

  • Lionesses score four second-half goals in Zurich in final Euros warm-up game

  • Impressive Alessia Russo puts visitors in front  

  • Georgia Stanway penalty doubles England’s lead, before goals from Beth England and Jill Scott 

A satisfied Sarina Wiegman said that June's warm-up games had enabled her to try out "everything she wanted to try" as England continued their perfect run of winning results in the run-up to the start of Women's Euro 2022 with a late flurry of goals to beat Switzerland.

Head coach Wiegman's side flourished in the latter stages of a match once again amid the positive impact of their lively substitutes, as they eventually proved too good for their hosts despite a quiet first half, in their final warm-up friendly before they face Austria at Old Trafford in July 6's Euros opener.

"There’s a big click [between the squad], we collaborate really well with the staff, and I think we have been growing a lot," former Netherlands manager Wiegman said. "The way we've improved, that’s really nice and that really does give confidence. I just hope we can show it next Wednesday and throughout the whole tournament."

 of England celebrates scoring their side's third goal during the Women's International friendly match between Switzerland and England at Stadion Letzigrund on June 30, 2022 in Zurich, Switzerland. - GETTY IMAGES
of England celebrates scoring their side's third goal during the Women's International friendly match between Switzerland and England at Stadion Letzigrund on June 30, 2022 in Zurich, Switzerland. - GETTY IMAGES

On a humid evening, Manchester United's Alessia Russo broke the deadlock in Zurich with a downward header and Chelsea's Bethany England also nodded in as both of those two central strikers scored their first Lionesses goals since November, taking the chance that was presented to them with Ellen White being rested after she recovered from Covid earlier this week.

Jill Scott headed in a fourth at the back post from a hanging Chloe Kelly cross to boost England’s morale further. In between Russo and England’s goals, Bayern Munich-bound midfielder Georgia Stanway fired home the second of the evening confidently from the penalty spot, capping a solid performance from the 23-year-old. England also saw a header well saved, while Lauren Hemp's magnificently-struck volley from a Kelly cross was cleared off the line. The visitors had also spurned good opportunities in the opening 10 minutes and Wiegman said she was "not concerned" by the goalless first half because of the quality of the chances her team had created early on.

Her team selection initially raised a few eyebrows. Leah Williamson, who is deployed traditionally as a centre-back for her club Arsenal but has been a regular in midfield for Wiegman all season, was moved back into the back four. That change switched Alex Greenwood - who has been the Lionesses' regular centre-back partner for Millie Bright - to left-back, altering the Greenwood-Bright duo that has helped England remain unbeaten since Wiegman took charge last September.

"Basically now I think we have tried everything that we wanted to or what we were able to," Wiegman added. "From here we review, have some more thoughts about it and then make decisions for next Wednesday. I think we have lots of options. I think that Leah can also play midfield and she can play in the back. That's what she showed tonight."

Right-back Lucy Bronze missed the game through illness but Wiegman revealed after the match that Bronze "is doing better" and should resume training within the next 24 hours.

Against a Swiss side who were beaten 7-0 away in Germany six days earlier, this result will not prompt England to get carried away, but it does give them a sixth straight victory to continue their winning streak. Next up, it’s the real thing.

Match details

Switzerland (4-2-3-1): Friedli 6; Maritz 6; Calligaris 7, Buhler 5, Aigbogun 5 (Rinast 5, 79); Maendly 6 (Xhemaili 6, 79), Walti 6 (Mauron 6, 45); Crnogorcevic 6 (Marti 5, 45), Sow 6, Reuteler 5 (Terchoun 6, 87); Bachmann 5 (Humm 6, 65).

Subs not used: Stierli, Peng, Fomli, Riesen.

Yellow cards: Calligaris.

England (4-2-3-1): Earps 6; Daly 7, Bright 6, Williamson 6, Greenwood 6 (Carter 6, 62); Stanway 7 (Scott 7, 79), Walsh 7; Mead 6 (Kelly 8, 62), Kirby 7, (Toone 7, 61), Hemp 7 (Parris 6, 75); Russo 8 (England 8, 61).

Subs not used: Hampton (gk), Roebuck (gk), Stokes, White, Wubben-Moy.

Yellow cards: Russo, Stanway.

Referee: Ainara Acevedo Dudley (Spain).

Attendance: 10,022

Switzerland 4 England 0, as it happened:

07:03 PM

Alessia Russo speaks

On the match:

"There were times in the first half we should have scored some chances. but we were patient. Afterwards at half time we spoke about keeping the tempo high and keeping the ball moving. We did exactly that in the second half.

On her goal:

"As a striker you always want to score.  The team put out a great performance. Sometimes it's not always going to be pretty, but you have to fight it out to get the win. Now we've done all the warm up games, we can really locked in for the Euros."

Is it coming home?

We'll see!

06:53 PM

FULL TIME - Switzerland 0 - 4 England

Another emphatic second-half performance from the Lionesses.

06:53 PM

94 mins - ENGLAND SCORE A FOURTH!

England have finished with a flourish.

Veteran Jill Scott bundles it home from close range and not long after the restart.. the whistle goes!

Preparation done. Three warm-up games, three wins for England. Wiegman's side is looking in pretty good shape.

Bring on the Euros.

06:49 PM

90 mins - Switzerland 0 - 3 England

We have four minutes of injury time.

06:48 PM

87 mins - Switzerland 0 - 3 England

England are heading into their home Euros on the back of 14 matches unbeaten. That's some stat.

They might have lacked that clinical edge in the first half, but they've come out firing in the second. The visitors win a free kick on the edge of the box, they play it short, and Ella Toone looks like she should have had a pen there, she was clipped by a defender. Referee says no.

06:44 PM

86 mins - Here's Stanway's penalty

06:42 PM

80 mins - Switzerland 0 - 3 England

Amid those goals we've missed the subs. Hemp, clearly still in some discomfort, makes way for Nikita Parris.

It's been another tactical masterclass from Sarina Wiegman, whose changes have really made an impact in this second half. It's all coming together nicely for the Euros. Still not sure why a bit of pushing and shoving in the area warranted that England penalty, mind.

Walsh hacks the ball upfield and tries to find Parris, but the keeper gathers. Switzerland haven't looked like scoring for a while now, they've completely succumbed to the Lionesses' dominance.

06:35 PM

76 mins - GOAL FOR ENGLAND!

Switzerland have crumbled. This time it's Beth England who gets on the scoresheet.

England win a penalty, Toon delivers and finds England, who engineers a thumping header which sails through a sea of red and white shirts and past Friedli.

Three goals, two of which have been headers for the Lionesses, who are now in cruise control.

06:32 PM

74 mins - GOAL FOR ENGLAND!

Stanway steps up and coolly slots the ball into the left corner to double England's lead!

06:31 PM

73 mins - Switzerland 0 - 1 England

Beth England heads towards goal and Friedli tips it over the bar. Corner England. Hemp takes it and aims to the basck post towards Bright, but the hosts clear.

England come again down the left with Kelly who picks out Hemp with a sublime pass.. Hemp volleys and it's off the line! But ENGLAND HAVE A PENALTY out of nowhere, for an apparent foul on Stanway in the area. That's quite unfortunate for the hosts, not sure if there was too much in that challenge.

06:28 PM

71  mins - Switzerland 0 - 1 England

England were all over the place at the back there, the Swiss were queuing up to put the ball in the back of the net there, but most of them are offside. The hosts have fired a warning shot there..

Just under 20 minutes remaining.

06:27 PM

70 mins - Switzerland 0 - 1 England

Stanway picks up a yellow for a late challenge on Maendly and gives away a free kick in a great position for Switzerland. What can they do here?

06:26 PM

68 mins - Switzerland 0 - 1 England

A closer look at Russo's goal..

06:24 PM

65 mins - Switzerland 0 - 1 England

Kelly looks to make an instant impact, whipping in a delicious ball into the box and an onrushing Hemp doesn't quite get there. The Man City striker falls uncomfortably on the ground and looks in pain.

Sow spurns a chance for Switzerland at the other end, she can't quite latch onto Aigbogun's cross.

06:22 PM

63 mins - Switzerland 0 - 1 England

There's fresh blood on for the Lionesses as Wiegman makes four changes.

Ella Toone, Chloe Kelly, Jess Carter and Beth England are all on.

Alessia Russo, having just grabbed her goal, takes her leave.

06:20 PM

58 mins - Switzerland 0 - 1 England

Alessia Russo has really staked her claim for a starting place for England's Euros opener against Austria next week. Her goal has galvanized the Lionesses, who flood forward again down the right. Daly sees a close-range effort blocked.

06:15 PM

55 mins - GOAL FOR ENGLAND!

They've done it! It started out the back from Williamson, who finds Daly with a cross court pass. Daly has all the time in the world and looks up to see where Russo is before lobbing it into the area towards the Man Utd striker, who directs a sublime header down into the bottom right hand corner of the net.

What a brilliant team goal that was!

06:13 PM

52 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

This game could go either way yet. Hemp is still on the sidelines receiving treatment on her wrist.

Millie Bright has had to put the ball out after a fly flew into her eye while she was on the move... not often you see that!

There's just been a loud cheer in the stadium for the near-11,000 fans who've turned up - a record attendance at a women's game in Switzerland.

England on the ball, trying to problem solve their way through Switzerland's wall of red. The hosts have been highly organised in defence this evening. Stanway finds herself on the edge of the penalty area..

06:08 PM

50 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

England win a free kick in a decent position and Stanway sends it in low.. Russo is on the move and looks like she might get something on it but doesn't connect cleanly.

Switzerland make their first change of the game - Crnogorcevic is replaced by Marti - which saddens co-commentator Emma Hayes because the Chelsea manager says has spent most of half time trying to pronounce Crnogorcevic's name.

Hemp takes a knock and is down receiving some treatment.

No changes yet for England..

06:04 PM

45 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

England form a team huddle and we're back underway.

05:57 PM

Tom Garry's half-time thoughts..

Some observations from our resident women's football reporter, who is at the game in Zurich:

"After a fairly bright first 10 minutes when they could have gone two or three goals ahead, England's performance has been pretty flat by their high standards. It's warm here in the stadium - not far off 30 degrees, even in the evening - and the air is very humid, enough to prompt a couple of drinks breaks for the players, so that's perhaps a mitigating factor, but they're not moving the ball as quickly as they'd like.

"Do the back four look assured? It feels a bit experimental from Sarina Wiegman, and this late stage before the tournament, to move Alex Greenwood across from centre-back to left-back. At centre-back, she's had an amazing season for club and country in that position.

05:51 PM

HALF TIME Switzerland 0 - 0 England

England have had the better changes, but they've been unable to break a spirited Switzerland.

It was a similar story in their first warm-up game against Belgium a fortnight ago, they've spurned so many chances - they are guilty on occasions of lacking that killer edge.

Russo picks up a booking after a foul, probably the only blemish in her first-half performance, apart from the moment she failed to convert Hemp's cross.

Wiegman will have some talking at half-time to do..

05:46 PM

42 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

Ellen White and Chloe Kelly are already getting ready on the touchline. Will Wiegman tinker with her squad at half time? Russo has been lively up front, but something needs to change in personnel.

05:45 PM

40 mins -  Switzerland 0 - 0 England

Apologies, we've just been experiencing some unexpected technical issues.

No change to the scoreline, but Switerland have certainly had their chances.

England survive as Mary Earps misses a fiery cross by Sandy Maendly but Crnogorcevic cannot connect.

Crnogorcevic has been everywhere for the hosts up front and that was a glorious chance to give her side the lead.

05:27 PM

26 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

Walsh threads a laser pass through to Hemp, who drives into the danger zone and forces a corner. Again, England don't make anything of it and regather in the midfield. Kirby makes a run in behind and Walsh tries to find her, but has no luck.

Both teams taking a quick water break.

05:24 PM

18 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

Williamson, who tonight has been deployed at center back alongside Millie Bright, makes a promising break down the left wing but runs into a red wall of defence.

The Lionesses regain possession and win a corner, which Greenwood whips in, but Bühler clears any danger with a thumping header.

05:21 PM

15 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

The hosts break down the left again and this time it's Geraldine Reuteler who is bouncing around the outside of the penalty area. England seem to have stepped off the gas a bit and have invited Switzerland into the game, they're starting to look quite comfortable in possession, deploying a passing game out from the back.

The Lionesses manage to clear and briefly win back possession.

05:17 PM

15 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

Switzerland are starting to threaten the England goal a bit more.

Ramona Bachmann is easily drifting into wide space, she sends in a cross and Crnogorcevic's header forces Earps to make a save. Switzerland can't make anything of the ensuing corner though.

05:15 PM

We're big fans of A Cappella Anthems

05:12 PM

12 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

Bachmann sends it in but it's easily gathered by England keeper Mary Earps, who was hardly tested against the Netherlands.

England counter attack quickly with a passage of great wing play... again it's Hemp who sends in a dangerously low cross and Russo is there and connects with the ball from close range... Friedli gets down low and it does enough to make another brilliant save. The ball nearly fizzes over the line but the keeper latches onto it.

It's been an impressive start from Russo, who looks lively.

05:08 PM

8 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

It's a fantastic transition play from the Lionesses as Russo finds Beth Mead with a sublime pass down the right flank. She surges forward and looks like she might have a pop at goal herself - Kirby is also in acres of space in the penalty area but Mead chooses to square it to Hemp, who shifts the ball onto her weaker right foot and watches her effort gathered safely by Friedli. Another big opportunity missed there.

05:06 PM

5 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

England are employing a high press, making it difficult for the hosts.

Rachel Daly is up high and threads the ball through to Alessia Russo on the edge of the area. She does well to squeeze a back heel pass through to Fran Kirby who is unmarked in the penalty and the Chelsea striker stabs the ball towards goal but she is denied brilliantly by Seraina Friedli! She should have converted there.

05:02 PM

2 mins - Switzerland 0 - 0 England

The two sets of players take the knee and Ramona Bachmann gets this one underway.

Last time for England to iron out the creases ahead of the Euros. Switzerland immediately pass the ball upfield and send a cross into the area but the Lionesses clear their lines, work their way up the other end of the field and Georgia Stanway picks out Lauren Hemp on the far left. Hemp has acres of space and immediately whips in one of her low, fiery crosses, but no one is there to connect and the ball rolls out of play.

04:58 PM

A record attendance in Zurich

It's a record crowd for a women's international at the Stadion Letzigrund, where over 11,000 fans have gathered.

England will be the overwhelming favourites for this one against a Suisse outfit ranked 20th in the world.

The teams have walked out and the anthems are being sung by a solo artist, a cappella style.

04:53 PM

Kick off less than 10 mins away...

England - Lynne Cameron/The FA
England - Lynne Cameron/The FA
England - Lynne Cameron/The FA
England - Lynne Cameron/The FA

04:49 PM

The number nine debate..

It's a great problem for England to have. The Lionesses have oodles of talent in the front three - they've been scoring for fun since Wiegman took charge - and tonight Manchester United's Alessia Russo will have a chance to impress up front, having been perennially used as a substitute under Wiegman.

Former England international Eni Aluko tells ITV: "It's another great conversation about the depth at number nine. We have three players who can play there [Alessia Russo, Bethany England, Ellen White].

"Beth England didn't do enough in the last game. She looked a bit lost. Russo came on and did well. She deserves a chance. She has done a lot. The players like her and believe in her.

"Ellen White is probably the first choice because of her experience but Russo deserves a shot today."

04:40 PM

Some essential pre-match reading..

We're absolutely delighted to announce that Chelsea manager and esteemed pundit Emma Hayes will be a columnist for Telegraph Sport throughout the Euros.

In her first Telegraph Sport column, Emma Hayes analyses what the hosts must do to emerge as champions this summer. Have a read here.

04:38 PM

Mead back in the starting line-up

The key takeaway from Wiegman's matchday side is that in-form striker Beth Mead has won back her starting spot after a series of standout performances in an England shirt.

The Arsenal forward has scored a national-team record of 14 goals for her country over the past season.

Under Wiegman - and in recent seasons with the north Londoners - Mead has been deployed as a wider forward or a winger. Tonight she'll line up on the right alongside Alessia Russo and Lauren Hemp.

04:27 PM

England team

04:23 PM

Good afternoon

And welcome to live coverage of England's final warm-up match before the Euros against Switzerland.

Ellen White was back in training on Wednesday, having missed last Friday's 5-1 victory over the Netherlands at Elland Road having tested positive for coronavirus.

The Manchester City striker has subsequently made the trip to Zurich on Thursday before opening the home Euros by taking on Austria at Old Trafford next Wednesday.

Full-back Lucy Bronze did not takw part in training due to illness, with head coach Sarina Wiegman saying: "Lucy doesn't feel too well today, hopefully she'll recover quickly. It's not Covid, because we did some testing and she's negative."

The Switzerland contest will be England's third warm-up fixture, having beaten Belgium 3-0 at Molineux before last week thumping the Netherlands,  the team Wiegman managed to Euro 2017 glory.

The coach said: "There has been some research from other tournaments that when you go away and come back, that helps.

"I think in this situation we're in, we've been at St George's Park for a while, very good pitch, we were treated very well, but then it's good to get in another environment, come here, get some freshness, have a good game tomorrow and then come back and get really ready and into the atmosphere of the Euros.

"I think we're in a very good place, and we just have to show good football and do our best. We know we can make an impact in England, we can give England's football a big boost, and that is what we really want to do."

In the Netherlands match England came from behind to win, with four of their goals coming in a second half that saw substitutes make a significant impact and skipper Leah Williamson back in defence after starting the game in midfield.

"You see that we're still building, although it gets close to the Euros," Wiegman said.

"We have so many options in this team, because the depth in the squad is good.

"We're now coming into a stage where we have to perform. During the year we had time to develop. Now we have to find out the team that's going to start, and the options we have when we want to change, and it's about performing and not trying out things any more."

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