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France, England coaches unite in champions' spirit

Published: Saturday 31 August 2013, 20.25CET
While proud Mo Marley admitted she didn't feel like her England team had lost, victorious France boss Gilles Eyquem hailed his side's team ethic, adding: "Now we are going to celebrate."
by Sébastien Blanchard & John Atkin
from Parc y Scarlets

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Published: Saturday 31 August 2013, 20.25CET

France, England coaches unite in champions' spirit

While proud Mo Marley admitted she didn't feel like her England team had lost, victorious France boss Gilles Eyquem hailed his side's team ethic, adding: "Now we are going to celebrate."

Gilles Eyquem, France coach
It is a great pleasure because the girls have put in loads of effort to achieve this. I thank all the staff for their great work. This is a victory for the team and for the group as a whole. It is a very good win but for a good match there have to be two teams.

We dominated the first half but, against a side that defend so well, we did not score. We tried to play down the flanks in order to pose a threat. It was tough. In the second half we had a few more difficulties, we were a bit rushed. We had to dig in to crack the English defence, eventually from a set piece. Then we saw that they were quite tired so we took advantage.

England chose to sit back and wait in order to break us down with a direct game and long passes. We had worked a lot on these and we did not make many mistakes. Our only real danger was from loose passes. But overall I don't think England put us under any real threat. Now we are going to celebrate.

Mo Marley, England manager
It is always difficult to lose but from a coaching and management perspective it doesn't actually feel like we've lost. The girls getting here, the way they've conducted themselves, the way they've performed for the whole of the tournament; I've just told them we're really proud of them, we're really proud of what they've achieved. This generation have never been [this far] before and that's what I've just reminded them. For us, they're champions in their own right.

We knew on paper that we had an exceptionally strong team but we didn't know how they'd cope in a tournament, it's the unknown. And that probably showed at the end. They probably got a bit overawed with the occasion in the first half but I thought we were the better team in the second. France's strength and power, the fact they are physically more developed than our girls, that was probably the difference at the end.

Our girls didn't know what five games [in a short space of time] feels like. Going through four and the euphoria of getting to the final, you think you can run all day. It's when you get to a final like this, against a really top team, that you realise you're running on empty. I think we experienced that today.

Last updated: 14/10/13 11.45CET

Related information

http://www.uefa.com/womensunder19/news/newsid=1987529.html#france+england+coaches+unite+champions+spirit

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