Jill Scott believes England “belong” in the later stages of major international tournaments after booking their place in the Women’s Euro 2017 semi-finals against the Netherlands on Thursday.
England, who had previously never beaten France in a competitive fixture, won 1-0 thanks to Jodie Taylor’s second half goal – her fifth of the tournament so far.
Scott, who made her 124th appearance for the Lionesses against France, was a vital component of England’s side and believes along with her team-mates they have earned this opportunity.
“We have worked so much off the pitch on pressurised situations and just getting the mind right,” Scott told Sky Sports News HQ. “Hopefully we can keep this run going – hopefully see this team into a European cup final where it belongs.”
The experienced midfielder, who plays her domestic club football for Manchester City, admitted that the victory ranked as one of the best moments of her career.
“It was definitely one of the best feelings I have ever had in football. Having not beaten France for forty years and having had a lot of heartaches along the way. [I am] just ecstatic.
“I can’t explain how I felt at that final whistle yesterday. Six minutes of added time certainly felt like a long time. Just fantastic to get that win and so happy for Jodie Taylor to get that goal.”
Scott believes that the momentum her side has built up through the tournament will continue into the semi-final against the Netherlands and is confident that England will benefit from past experiences, which include defeating 2015 World Cup hosts Canada at the quarter-final stage.
“It’s going to be a massive challenge,” said Scott. “Netherlands have really played well this tournament and they deserve to be in that semi-final just as much as us.
“We have got experience of knocking out teams like that so know we have got to draw on those experiences and just keep believing in the way we are playing.”
The 30-year-old will miss England’s semi-final after picking up a booking during yesterday’s match and doesn’t regret committing to her combative role.
“I knew if I got a yellow card I would miss the semi-final but I knew I had to go into that game being competitive,” Scott added. “I wouldn’t have been able to play my game if I thought I am going to stay out of tackles. It would have been great for Mark [Sampson] to have everyone available for selection for the semi-final but I am sure we will get the job done.”