England legend Jill Scott says that it is important that players continue to enjoy their football in the full-time era.
The veteran midfielder collected her 150th senior international cap for England this afternoon as they defeated Northern Ireland 6-0 at St George’s Park.
When looking back on her international career which spans more than 14 years, Scott said that it was important for players to enjoy their football and efforts must be made to ensure that the enjoyment factor continues now that the game has taken on full-time professional status.
“Looking back at the changes over the years, obviously the girls are now able to train full-time with their clubs” said Scott.
“I think it is just important that we keep that enjoyment side, especially for the younger girls as well. It is obviously so professional for them now – it’s just football, football, football.”
Scott played the full 90 minutes of her 150th appearance for the Lionesses whilst having the honour of wearing the captain’s armband. The midfielder went on to say that it had been a near-perfect day both for herself and the team as England returned to competitive action following an absence of nearly a year.
“The performance from the girls was brilliant” Scott added. “There were some standout performances, Ellen White, Lucy Bronze and I thought Georgia Stanway had a great game as well.
“It has been a good day all round. I think with the four debuts as well, it has been great.”
New England coach Hege Riise took charge of the Lionesses for the first time this afternoon since being appointed into the role on an interim basis and Scott has enjoyed the first camp working under the Norwegian and her assistant Rhian Wilkinson.
The midfielder said “The coaches have been really good, they have come straight in and have been very confident and they know what they want from us.
“I think it has worked really well so far. Obviously, it has only been a short camp but you can’t change the world in five days.
“It think that it is definitely a step in the right direction.”
Scott will be keen to remain part of Riise’s England group when the Lionesses take on Canada in their next international friendly in April.