Euro 2017: England can win tournament, says Mark Sampson

Mark Sampson
Mark Sampson led England to a third-place finish at the 2015 World Cup
Women's Euro 2017 qualifying: Estonia v England
Venue: A Le Coq Arena, Tallinn Date: 21 September (kick-off 19:45 BST)

England women can win the Euro 2017 tournament in the Netherlands, says coach Mark Sampson.

The Lionesses have never won a European Championship, but were the highest-placed European team at this year's World Cup in Canada - finishing third.

Sampson has made seven changes from the World Cup squad for England's opening Euro qualifier in Estonia.

Manchester City midfielder Isobel Christiansen, 23, gets her first call-up for the match on 21 September.

Sampson told the Women's Football Show: "The World Cup isn't the end; it was the start of the journey. Over the next couple of years we've got a great opportunity of making this team better.

"Our ambition come June 2017 will be to go to Holland and look to win the tournament."

Isobel Christiansen
Isobel Christiansen is one of seven Manchester City players in Mark Sampson's squad

Christiansen, who sent City second in Women's Super League One with the winning goal against Sunderland Ladies on Sunday, said she "started crying a little bit" at the news.

"It was such a successful trip in Canada," said Christiansen. "I'm ecstatic to be part of the next camp after the World Cup."

Sampson has also recalled Chelsea pair Gilly Flaherty (defender) and Gemma Davison (winger), along with Notts County defender Amy Turner and winger Jess Clarke.

Manchester City defender Demi Stokes and Arsenal striker Danielle Carter are included, but there is no place for Sunderland striker Beth Mead, the current top scorer in the WSL with 11 goals.

In Midfield, Fara Williams and Jade Moore are injured, while veterans Karen Carney and Katie Chapman are left out despite featuring prominently in Canada. Arsenal midfielder Jordan Nobbs and Portland Thorns forwards Jodie Taylor and Lianne Sanderson are also out.

"It's important that we keep building on the momentum from the World Cup and keep improving," Sampson said.

"Some of the tournament squad have yet to recover fully from injuries sustained over the course of the season and we have left some players who would have been selected out to continue their rehab work.

"This has opened the door for a new group of players who have shown strong qualities over the course of the season and deserve an opportunity."

England squad

Goalkeepers: Karen Bardsley (Manchester City), Siobhan Chamberlain (Notts County), Carly Telford (Notts County)

Defenders: Laura Bassett (Notts County), Lucy Bronze (Manchester City), Gilly Flaherty (Chelsea), Alex Greenwood (Notts County), Steph Houghton (Manchester City), Claire Rafferty (Chelsea), Alex Scott (Arsenal), Casey Stoney (Arsenal), Amy Turner (Notts County), Demi Stokes (Manchester City)

Midfielders: Isobel Christiansen (Manchester City), Jo Potter (Birmingham City), Jill Scott (Manchester City)

Forwards: Eniola Aluko (Chelsea), Danielle Carter (Arsenal), Jess Clarke (Notts County), Gemma Davison (Chelsea), Toni Duggan (Manchester City), Fran Kirby (Chelsea), Ellen White (Notts County)