After 10 days away with England's under 19's Lucy Fitzgerald is extremely pleased with how it went and the experienced she gained from it. "Both games went really well, The team performed well and we showed signs of improvement throughout the whole week. We scored a lot of goals during the 10 days, something we know as a team we are capable of, it was just about putting it into the game"
Lucy and Gabby both represented Millwall for the England U19s and both were on the score sheet. It was a proud moment for Lucy and her family. "Yeah of course, it was my first ever international goal for England so it was a very proud moment for me and my parents who text me straight after the game to send their congratulations. The team after the game were also full of praise which was a nice feeling."
After making the step up to the first team at Millwall this season, Lucy says it has had a lot of impact on her performances for England. "Playing for the first team week in week out of course helps, it’s helped me physically massively, playing against fully grown women for Millwall then playing against my age group for England has definitely done me a lot of good."
Now back and training with Millwall on preparation for Sunday’s clash against Leicester, Lucy feels the team have prepared well despite the break and are raring to go. "We’ve been working a lot on our possession and shape to ensure we get it right on the day, the team are working very hard and people are keeping their heads high. The tempo of each session is very high and there is constant improvement individually but also as a team."
The last two games for Millwall in terms of performance have been positive and with all due respect to Leicester, Lucy admits the team see Sunday’s game as an opportunity to get their first league win of the season. "It’s clear to see that our performances each week are improving and we are definitely playing more as a team, the team are confident the win will come in due course, hopefully for us it will be Sunday."
It's an honour to represent your country at any level Lucy admits and says the difference in style of play and physicality helps her become more versatile. "We knew when we got there the sides we were facing were never going to be of the highest quality but would have a lot of team spirit. Saying that the Slovakian team that we played were a very physical side, they weren’t technically as good as the women’s championship but matched the league in terms of physicality."
Lia and Annie are still away representing the under 18s and Lucy has been in contact with them since and says they are doing themselves and the club proud. "I’ve been able to speak to Annie about the games, they’re winning which is a bonus but both are playing well, Lia got an assist while Annie made her debut. They’re developing well, they are still young and this experience will help them a lot."
Life in the first team and in the Women’s Championship is not an easy step up when you make the jump from the development side but Lucy states while it is physically challenging, she is loving every minute. "It’s been challenging of course but I’m learning every day and I’m becoming a better player because of it. I think having such a young team makes it easier for people to get comfortable quicker so we can gel as a team quicker, we have a few experienced players here already but we are all learning off of each other."