UEFA Women's EURO 2017 Qualifier
Scotland vs Iceland
Friday 3rd June 2016, 7pm kick-off
The Falkirk Stadium
Scotland and Manchester City defender Jennifer Beattie believes that the winning mentality Scotland players possess for both club and country will be crucial in Friday’s UEFA Women’s EURO qualifier with Iceland.
Anna Signeul’s side face the top seeds in Group 1 at the Falkirk Stadium with both teams carrying 100% records going into the game.
*** Secure your seat for Scotland vs Iceland ***
For Beattie, who along with striker Jane Ross is currently sitting top of the FA WSL in England with the Sky Blues, success for the SWNT and club success are intrinsically linked.
With Lisa Evans recently lifting the Frauen-Bundesliga with Bayern Munich, Emma Mitchell becoming an FA Cup winner with Arsenal as well as the contingent from Glasgow City in the squad, the defender believes that the desire for success has helped Scotland navigate a tricky qualifying group so far.
Speaking to the Scottish FA website, Beattie said:
“I think it is something that has been growing over the years, especially as more of us have started tasting success as professional, full-time players. That hunger for success grows the more you win, and you can see that with Lisa in Germany and Emma at Arsenal.
"If more players get in to the routine of winning, it builds character and experience in the team. We know what winning feels like, and that feeling drives you on in a massive way.
“This campaign has been difficult. Iceland may be top seeds but every game in their own ways has been really important. It’s a credit for the girls that we’ve got such a strong mentality, and that we’ve avoided any slip-ups in tricky matches.
Scotland's UEFA Women's EURO Campaign
Slovenia (A) | 3-0 W
Belarus (H) | 7-0 W
FYR Macedonia (A) | 4-1 W
FYR Macedonia (H) | 10-0 W
Slovenia (H) | 3-1 W
“We look at every game with the same focus, and Friday will be no different.”
After next Tuesday’s qualifier in Belarus, all that remains of Group 1 is an away trip to Reykjavik in September. Friday is the last home match of a campaign in which Anna Signeul’s team have scored 20 goals in their three games on Scottish soil but Beattie admits that Iceland will provide the sternest test of the campaign so far.
“This is the one we looked at the start of the campaign as a key game, which is why it is so important that we maintained our 100% in the group” she elaborated.
“Our form so far has given the team a massive confidence boost, and all of the girls are ready for the game now. We’ve been looking forward to this camp, and it’s good to see everyone here is confident and fighting-fit. I’m sure there might be a few nerves, but the overarching feeling is excitement for Friday.”
The squad also features Kim Little, recently voted the BBC Women’s Footballer of the Year for 2016 for her successes for the national team as well as at Seattle Reign and Melbourne City. It was with the latter that Beattie played alongside Little at the start 2016 as part of the W-League winning side in Australia, where Beattie was reunited with a player that she’s known ever since their time with the Scotland youth teams. From her first-hand experience, the defender was full of praise for the midfielder’s recent accolade.
She explained: “Kim has been consistently great since we were kids. I know awards put labels on these sorts of things but she’s honestly always had that drive to be the best in the world every year, not just in the last 12 months.
“An aspect of playing in Melbourne that I loved was getting to train and play with her day in, day out. My favourite thing is her drive and effort that she puts in to training. It’s no surprise she’s been voted the best in the world because she is.
“She works harder than anyone else, and when you put that with talent, you see the results.”
Friday night’s match at the Falkirk Stadium could also see Beattie reach a personal landmark, as the 25 year-old could make her 100th appearance for the national team. It’s a feat that the defender would take pride in achieving, but one that is secondary to the team’s primary objective.
“It would obviously be amazing,” she said.
“It’s something I’ve seen a few of the girls reach during their careers, and when I was going through the ranks as a kid you dream of earning your first cap, let alone your 100th. If I do get it it would be brilliant, but it’s been at the back of my mind this week.
“This game is way bigger than any personal achievement.”
Tickets are now on sale for next Friday's crucial UEFA Women's EURO qualifier aganst Iceland at the Falkirk Stadium.
The popular youth group offer returns, which allows five adults and 20 children to attend the match for just £30. You can download the form here.
Pay at the gate will be in operation on matchday, with entry at £5 for adults and £2 for concessions.
A pre-sale offer of two-for-one on tickets is also available from the Falkirk FC shop at the stadium or by telephone on 01324 624121.
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