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Northern Ireland Women vs England Women. Women's European Championship Group A.

St. Mary's StadiumAttendance30,785.

Northern Ireland Women 0

    England Women 5

    • F Kirby (40th minute)
    • B Mead (44th minute)
    • A Russo (48th minute, 53rd minute)
    • K Burrows (76th minute own goal)

    Northern Ireland Women 0-5 England Women: Alessia Russo double sees Lionesses ease to victory in final group game of Euro 2022

    Report as Fran Kirby and Beth Mead score late in the first half, breaching Northern Ireland's stubborn defence; Mead remains the top scorer at Euro 2022 with five goals; Alessia Russo scored twice after half-time to see England finish with a perfect Group A record

    Alessia Russo (23) celebrates scoring England's third goal of the game
    Image: Alessia Russo scored twice as England beat Northern Ireland

    Alessia Russo's second-half double saw England ease past Northern Ireland 5-0 in their final group game of Euro 2022 at St Mary's.

    The Lionesses were without their manager Sarina Wiegman after the coach tested positive for Covid-19 earlier on Friday, but it seemed to do little to dampen a rampant Lionesses team.

    There was early drama too at a sunny St Mary's when England were awarded a penalty inside five minutes. Georgia Stanway's shot hit Laura Rafferty on the arm, with the referee immediately pointing to the spot. However, after a lengthy VAR review and the official consulting the monitor, the penalty was rightly ruled out.

    For 40 minutes, it looked like Northern Ireland were in situ to frustrate their rivals, with England being wasteful with chances. Lauren Wade looked like a lethal outlet for Kenny Shiels' side, firing into the side of the net in the first half, but never truly threatened Mary Earps' goal.

    Fran Kirby finally breached the Northern Ireland defence with five minutes of the first half to play, curling a superb effort home from the top of the area after Northern Ireland failed to clear their lines.

    Beth Mead quickly followed up with her fifth goal of Euro 2022, making her the Golden Boot leader so far. She fired a low, hard shot at the near post, with the ball taking a nick off a sliding Rachel Furness. It saw her goalkeeper, Jackie Burns, wrong-footed as England nabbed their second.

    Fran Kirby celebrates scoring for England vs Northern Ireland
    Image: Fran Kirby celebrates scoring the opener for England

    Russo came on at half-time, along with Ella Toone and Alex Greenwood, and it took just three minutes for her to score her second goal of the tournament. She did well to rise up between the defenders to nod home Mead's cross as the winger added an assist to her evening's work.

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    Just five minutes later, Russo nabbed her second goal and England's fourth of the game. It was perhaps the goal of the match too, picking up a fizzed cross from Manchester United team-mate Toone, before again getting the better of the defenders, She then hammered a shot past Burns, roaring her approval with her celebration.

    Alessia Russo (second right) celebrates scoring England's third goal of the game
    Image: Russo has now scored in successive Euros games

    Northern Ireland's difficult evening was capped off with an unfortunate own goal from Rafferty in the 76th minute. Her attempt to stop Mead's cross from finding Chloe Kelly did not go to plan as she turned the ball past her own goalkeeper.

    It was not the ending Shiels or Northern Ireland will have wanted to their Euro 2022 journey, but the team were still given a rousing reception by their fans at full-time. For England, they finish Group A with a 100 per cent record and will now being preparations for their quarter-final on Wednesday evening.

    England talking points: Russo stakes claim, Kirby back to best

    England's Alessia Russo (second right) celebrates scoring her side's third goal of the game

    Another win and another clean sheet for England but what are the takeaways heading into the quarter-finals of the Euros?

    READ HERE

    N Ireland 0-5 England: Lionesses shine without Sarina | Should Russo start? | Where do Northern Ireland go from here?

    The Sky Sports Women's Euros podcast is back after the completion of Group A, with Charlotte Marsh and Anton Toloui are joined by Sky Sports News' Paul Gilmour to discuss England's win against Northern Ireland in the final Group A game of Euro 2022.

    The trio take a look at how the Lionesses fared without Sarina Wiegman, after the coach was left out due to Covid, and how it might impact quarter-final preparations. We also hear from captain Leah Williamson on how the squad have adapted.

    Plus, a look at some of the players who starred for both sides at St Mary's - including Alessia Russo - and Paul discusses where Northern Ireland go from here after their first major tournament.

      Veurink: We prepared for games without Sarina

      England assistant coach Arjun Veurink:

      "Sarina is doing well, unfortunately not good enough to be here. It's tough for me to say anything about that [whether she will be back for the quarter-final]. She will not be joining us live, but as Covid has taught us, we can do a lot remotely as well. Hopefully she will be with the team as soon as possible.

      "As we all know, Sarina is well-prepared for all scenarios, so we spoke about it. It's the world we live in at the moment, we were prepared and spoke to individual staff members too.

      England's Alessia Russo scores her side's fourth goal of the game against Northern Ireland
      Image: Russo has now scored three goals at Euro 2022

      "What I think Sarina does really well is managing the staff, this day is to get them going and back to bunnies as usual. She is in a different space from the group but most of the staff were prepared well already.

      "That's a good part nowadays, there are ways to get in contact. She had contact with the technical staff so she had her influence on the game as well. There were lots of things we spoke about before the game, about most of the scenarios during the game so it was really good.

      "The team performance [pleased me most]. They showed that whatever is going on, we have lots of qualities and that pleased me the most. We were calm and relaxed. It's not great that Sarina is not here, but they reacted really well and I'm happy with the team performance and the great goals we scored."

      Shiels: A massive failure if England don't win Euros

      England goalkeeper Mary Earps (right) shakes hands with players after Northern Ireland's Euro exit
      Image: Northern Ireland have exited at the group stage in their first major international tournament

      Northern Ireland manager Kenny Shiels:

      "It was always going to be tough for us. I don't know if everybody realises, but England haven't conceded a goal in the last three years of 'proper football' with the Euros and the World Cup [qualifiers].

      "We've been beaten by them four times… at an average of 4-0 or 5-0. But they're averaging over the period 9-0s and haven't conceded a goal. That's how much further up the ladder they are from us.

      "I thought our organisation tonight was excellent, we put them into a position of nullification. They got a deflected goal, then another. They were the better team obviously and I was proud of the players and how they adapted to how we set up.

      "They were fantastic, they gave everything and I must say, I was really impressed with how we stuck to our task. We created a few chances, or half chances, and that reflected on us. We didn't play out as much as we would have done normally because they're too good for us.

      "It would be a massive failure if they didn't win this tournament because they're home and hosed. Everybody else should just go home.

      "If you were picking a team as from now, from what we've seen, Northern Ireland have the best left-back in Demi Vance and the best centre-back in Sarah McFadden.

      "There's nobody better in the tournament than those two - but two isn't enough to develop those players and help them reach those standards."

      What's next?

      England will be back in action on Wednesday when they face either Spain or Denmark in their quarter-final clash at the Amex; kick-off 8pm.

      Northern Ireland will next play in September when they take on Luxembourg and Latvia in their World Cup Qualifiers.

      Follow Euro 2022 across Sky Sports

      Keep up with all the latest from Euro 2022 across Sky Sports and Sky Sports News this summer.

      Coverage will be anchored by Sky Sports WSL presenter Caroline Barker, alongside Jessica Creighton and Kyle Walker. Meanwhile, Karen Carney, Sue Smith, Courtney Sweetman-Kirk and Laura Bassett will give analysis throughout the tournament.

      They will also be joined by experienced England goalkeeper Karen Bardsley and Manchester City defender Esme Morgan.

      The pundits and presenters will work from the Sky Sports Women's Euro 2022 Mobile Presentation Bus, which will follow the Sky Sports News team around the country to the various stadiums where matches are being played.

      In addition, Sky Sports' Essential Football Podcast will be rebranded for the tournament to Sky Sports Women's Euros Podcast from 21 June. Hosted by Charlotte Marsh and Anton Toloui, it will feature exclusive news and player interviews in addition to a strong programme line-up around the tournament.

      Euro 2022: The groups...

      Group A: England, Austria, Norway, Northern Ireland

      Group B: Germany, Denmark, Spain, Finland

      Group C: Netherlands, Sweden, Portugal, Switzerland

      Group D: France, Italy, Belgium, Iceland

      Euro 2022: The schedule...

      Group stage

      Wednesday July 6

      Group A: England 1-0 Austria

      Thursday July 7

      Group A: Norway 4-1 Northern Ireland

      Friday July 8

      Group B: Spain 4-1 Finland

      Group B: Germany 4-0 Denmark

      Saturday July 9

      Group C: Portugal 2-2 Switzerland

      Group C: Netherlands 1-1 Sweden

      Sunday July 10

      Group D: Belgium 1-1 Iceland

      Group D: France 5-1 Italy

      Monday July 11

      Group A: Austria 2-0 Northern Ireland

      Group A: England 8-0 Norway

      Tuesday July 12

      Group B: Denmark 1-0 Finland

      Group B: Germany 2-0 Spain

      Wednesday July 13

      Group C: Sweden 2-1 Switzerland

      Group C: Netherlands 3-2 Portugal

      Thursday July 14

      Group D: Italy 1-1 Iceland

      Group D: France 2-1 Belgium

      Friday July 15

      Group A: Northern Ireland 0-5 England

      Group A: Austria 1-0 Norway

      Saturday July 16

      Group B: Finland vs Germany - kick-off 8pm, Stadium MK

      Group B: Denmark vs Spain - kick-off 8pm, London Community Stadium

      Sunday July 17

      Group C: Switzerland vs Netherlands - kick-off 5pm, Bramall Lane

      Group C: Sweden vs Portugal - kick-off 5pm, Leigh Sports Village

      Monday July 18

      Group D: Iceland vs France - kick-off 8pm, New York Stadium

      Group D: Italy vs Belgium - kick-off 8pm, Manchester City Academy Stadium

      Knockout phase

      Quarter-finals

      Wednesday July 20

      Quarter-final 1: England vs Runners-up Group B - kick-off 8pm, Brighton and Hove Community Stadium

      Thursday July 21

      Quarter-final 2: Germany vs Austria - kick-off 8pm, London Community Stadium

      Friday July 22

      Quarter-final 3: Winners Group C v Runners-up Group D - kick-off 8pm, Leigh Sports Village

      Quarter-final 4: Winners Group D v Runners-up Group C - kick-off 8pm, New York Stadium

      Semi-finals

      Tuesday July 26

      Semi-final 1: Winners quarter-final 1 v Winners quarter-final 3 - kick-off 8pm, Bramall Lane

      Wednesday July 27

      Semi-final 2: Winners quarter-final 2 v Winners quarter-final 4 - kick-off 8pm, Stadium MK

      Final

      Sunday July 31

      Winners semi-final 1 v Winners semi-final 2 - kick-off 5pm, Wembley

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