Fran Kirby of England in action England Women v Scotland Women FIFA Women's World Cup Group D football match, Allianz Riviera Stadium, Nice, France - 09 Jun 2019 Photo: Lynne Cameron for The FA

Chelsea ace Kirby hails Lionesses’ all-round team effort against Argentina

Chelsea forward Fran Kirby hailed the overall team performance as England defeated Argentina 1-0 at Stade Oceane in Le Havre last night.

Kirby played in a deeper role behind the strikers and impressed with both her creativity and general liveliness in a match where it was difficult to select an individual Player of the Match performance for the Lionesses.

Jodie Taylor grabbed the headlines with her first England goal in 14 months but teammate Kirby was quick to hail the whole team when speaking to FAWSL Full-Time.

The player said “I think against Scotland we are all very tense. With it being the first game of the World Cup we knew we had to build momentum.

“Today, everyone was playing freely and getting behind each other and I think that is exactly what we need.”

After playing as a forward for her club, Kirby reverted to a deeper role against Argentina, one which has been used by manager Phil Neville previously. Kirby told us that she has no complaints about playing in that position for her country when required.

“For me it’s a new role and I’m still learning a lot about it” Kirby added. “It’s not the role that I have been playing at Chelsea but I am just trying to take it in my stride.

“Ultimately, I want to create things and get on the ball so when I am doing that I am happy and I just try to play with no fear.”

Argentina came with a clear game plan which was so close to coming off had England striker Taylor not have netted the game’s only goal. Kirby was unsurprised by the challenge which the Lionesses had to face to get the three points.

“We knew that they were going to make it difficult” the forward said. “We knew that they were going to bank up and make it physical.

“We just had to stick with our game plan and have patience as we knew that it was going to be a difficult game.

“We knew that we had a goal in us and we knew that it was going to come.”

England are back in action on Wednesday when they take on Japan in Nice in their final Group D match.

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