Great Scott brings up a ton in style

The Football League Paper - - WOMEN'S FOOTBALL WEEKLY - By Tony Leighton

ENGLAND’S new cen­tu­rion Jill Scott found it un­be­liev­able that she was set to win her 100th in­ter­na­tional cap as she pre­pared to step out to face Aus­tralia at the CFA In­ter­na­tional Tour­na­ment in China on Tues­day.

But the 28-year-old Manch­ester City mid­fielder was per­haps the only per­son in the women’s game to feel any dis­be­lief that – just nine years af­ter mak­ing her de­but – she was about to reach the pres­ti­gious land­mark.


Head coach Mark Samp­son led a cho­rus of plau­dits for the former Sun­der­land and Ever­ton player, with the words: “Jill is a world-class foot­baller and a very im­por­tant char­ac­ter, as well as a big player in our team.”

In the dress­ing room ahead of the 1-0 win against the Matil­das, Samp­son pinned on the no­tice board a list of the now eight English women who have passed the 100 in­ter­na­tional caps mark.

Scott’s re­sponse? “I could have n’t be­lieve my name was up there with those leg­ends,” she said. “Play­ers like Kelly Smith and Rachel Yankey, who I’d idolised as a kid and then couldn’t be­lieve I was play­ing with when I made my England de­but.”

As fate would have it, on that de­but day for a star­ryeyed Scott – who was sent on as a late sub­sti­tute by the then na­tional coach Hope Pow­ell – Smith hit a hat-trick and Yankey scored England’s other goal in a 4-0 win against the Nether­lands.

That oc­ca­sion was of course one of the big­gest days of Scott’s play­ing ca­reer, but many fur­ther high­lights fol­lowed on a 100-cap jour­ney that has in­cluded three World Cup tour­na­ments and two Euro­pean Cham­pi­onships.

“Just be­ing se­lected for the 2007 World Cup in China was mas­sive,” re­called the mid­fielder. “I’d got less than ten caps at the time so Hope took a chance on me, but I played in ev­ery game and that was a great ex­pe­ri­ence.


“Be­ing named in the 2011 World Cup ‘Team of the Tour­na­ment’ is an­other big mem­ory, and then af­ter the dis­ap­point­ment of not get­ting through our group at Euro 2013 it was just fan­tas­tic to win a bronze medal at this year’s World Cup.”

Scott is now eye­ing Euro 2017 gold for England, though she is set­ting no per­sonal tar­gets.

“I’ll go on work­ing hard to keep my place in the team,” she said. “And if we get it right we can be in con­tention.”


CEN­TU­RION: Jill Scott has joined an elite group of play­ers to have been capped 100 times by England

IN­SPI­RA­TION: Kelly Smith

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