England squad to play Iceland at Norwich

PUBLISHED: 15:52 23 February 2006 | UPDATED: 09:14 14 September 2010

Hope Powell has made two changes to the England squad that will take on Iceland at Norwich City on 9 March. Faye White returns to the squad in place of Laura Bassett, after the Arsenal skipper missed the games against Sweden earlier this month due to an ankle injury.

Hope Powell has made two changes to the England squad that will take on Iceland at Norwich City on 9 March. Faye White returns to the squad in place of Laura Bassett, after the Arsenal skipper missed the games against Sweden earlier this month due to an ankle injury.

Faye's Arsenal team-mate Alex Scott also returns after playing 75 minutes of The FA Women's Cup tie against Chelsea last weekend, coming in for Bristol Academy's Katie Holtham. Alex's last appearance for The Three Lions was at the end of October, when she scored twice in the 13-0 victory over Hungary.

Talking to TheFA.com, Hope said: "Alex has been out for a while and it was good to see her back in action at the weekend. She offers the squad pace and aggression, and although she is still learning the game, she has worked incredibly hard to progress so quickly through the England ranks.

"Alex has been patient with her rehabilitation from injury and has demonstrated a real hunger to stake a claim for a place back in the starting eleven, which are the sort of dilemma's as a Coach that you like to have."

England last played Iceland in May 2004, when a goal from Fara Williams was enough to see Hope Powell's side earn a 1-0 win, whilst in their current World Cup qualifying campaign, they sit third after three games, behind Sweden and the Czech Republic.

After the two games against Sweden in Cyprus in Sweden earlier this month, did Hope feel that she had learnt anything new about her players?

"I've said it before, but our players on the whole are very young" said Hope. "It's easy for people to forget that, and the pleasing thing about the two games is seeing how the players were able to compete for the full 90 minutes in two physical contacts, proving that the work the players are being asked to do away from the squad, is working, as we continually seek to narrow the gap on the leading nations.

"Even a couple of years ago we would have found the players tiring in the last quarter of the game, but they now have the belief that if they go a goal down, as they did in the second game, they can come back from that and fight right to the final whistle.

"The application and attitude of the players proves to me that what we are all trying to achieve is working, and competition for places is more intense than ever.

"The start we have given ourselves in the World Cup group means that the players can approach the France game with confidence. With Faye White suspended for that game, we still have another opportunity against Iceland to look at a few things, before myself and Brent decide on what will be the starting line-up against France.

"I know that Norwich City Football Club have been really supportive in promoting this game and are looking to attract a big crowd for us. Alex and Eniola were very complimentary when they attended the Soccer PM event on Monday night at Carrow Road, and we'll be doing everything we can to ensure fans attending the game have lots to cheer about!"

t England Squad:

Rachel Brown (Everton), Siobhan Chamberlain (Bristol Academy)

Lindsay Johnson (Everton), Mary Phillip (Arsenal), Alex Scott (Arsenal), Casey Stoney (Charlton Athletic), Rachel Unitt (Everton), Faye White (Arsenal)

Anita Asante (Arsenal), Katie Chapman (Charlton Athletic), Vicky Exley (Doncaster Rovers Belles), Kelly Smith (Arsenal), Fara Williams (Everton)

Eniola Aluko (Charlton Athletic), Amanda Barr (Charlton Athletic), Karen Carney (Birmingham City), Jody Handley (Everton), Josanne Potter (Charlton Athletic), Sue Smith (Leeds United), Rachel Yankey (Arsenal)

t Tickets for the game at Carrow Road are now on sale priced £5 for adults and £2.50 for concessions. Tickets can be purchased from the Norwich City ticket office or by calling the ticket hotline on 0870 444 1902

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