Telford’s fear factor aim

England Women’s final World Cup qualifier against Montenegro may be a dead rubber but it holds significance for Carly Telford.

Mark Sampson’s side have already qualified for next summer’s showpiece event courtesy of nine straight wins in Group 6.

They complete their qualifying campaign in the picturesque setting of Petrovac on Wednesday afternoon  – and Telford wants her team-mates to make a statement.

Montenegro v England

FIFA Women’s World Cup 2015
Group 6 qualifier
3pm BST, Wednesday 17 September 2014
Petrovac, Montenegro

The Notts County goalkeeper said: “The win isn’t essential in terms of qualification, but for us it is. We take pride in what we do and we want to get 10 wins out of 10. We want to get that clean sheet and score as many goals as we can.

“We want people to start worrying about England. We want them to look at us and wonder why we are scoring so many. We want people to fear us so we have to put a marker down in every game, no matter who we are playing.

Mark wants us to have that ruthless streak. It is important we get that 10 out of 10 and that we keep building momentum right up until next summer.”

Telford, 27, has been in and around the senior team set-up ever since she made her debut against Iceland in 2009, but she has only won two more caps since, the last one coming in the Cyprus Cup win over Finland in March.

She is the most experienced goalkeeper in the current squad, with Birmingham City’s Rebecca Spencer and Sunderland’s Rachael Laws both being called up for the first time.

Telford wants to impress Sampson and his goalkeeping coach Lee Kendall, and has targeted a clean sheet.

She added: “This game is really important for me on a personal level, if I play. I haven’t played a lot of first-team football for England but this is an opportunity for me.

“Montenegro have only scored six goals in their whole campaign and we don’t want to be the side they score the seventh against. I don’t want to be the goalkeeper they score it against. And we don’t want to give another team any reason to think they can exploit a weakness in our team.

“You never know how many opportunities you will get at international level so you have to make the most of them when they arrive and make them count.” 

Telford has enjoyed a number of training sessions with Kendall – son of former Wolverhampton Wanderers’ keeper Mark Kendall – since he was appointed in January and she believes the former Bristol City coach will continue to improve the fortunes of the growing band of talented Three Lions goalkeepers.

Telford said: “I love working with Lee, he’s a fantastic coach. I’ll always be grateful for what [England’s former goalkeeping coach] Keith Rees did for me – I had worked with him since I was 17 – but it’s a new era in women’s football, and Mark and Lee have brought a freshness with them.

“He hits the ball so much harder than you probably experience at club training but that can only be a good thing for us. The outfield players are getting stronger all the time and you can notice their shots are a lot harder than they used to be so Lee is only trying to replicate that.

“I’m learning from Lee in every single session and he’s always there for that extra bit of advice if you need it.”

England face two-time world champions Germany at Wembley Stadium on Sunday 23 November (3pm KO). 

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