Neville: St Mary's a perfect venue

By SFC Media Thu 05 Apr England vs Wales
Photo by Matt Watson | Phil Neville

England Women's boss Phil Neville is encouraged by the fact that his side will be walking out at St Mary's tomorrow in front of a near-capacity crowd, as the Lionesses look to move ahead of their Welsh counterparts in World Cup Qualifying.

The former Manchester United man has overseen England's rise to second in the world's FIFA rankings, and thinks England's Lionesses are deserving of playing in the country's top stadiums.

Talking about the excitement in the build up to what he described as a 'derby' of sorts, Neville touches on his personal connections with St Mary's, and why he feels tomorrow night is a big occasion.

"My memories of St Mary's are quite vivid, it was my final Premier League game as a player. I never had a good record at the Dell, so I like here better," the England manager joked.

"St Mary's is a fantastic stadium. I want my players to get the excitement out of their minds and bodies [during Thursday's pre-game training session], and the fact we're now filling Premier League stadiums, it says a lot for the game.

"We're looking at bigger venues and better stadiums, because England are a team people want to play.

"We've got some of the best stadiums in the world, and I want the Lionesses to be playing in the best stadiums. It will be packed to the rafters [at St Mary's] and that's brilliant to see.

"This is the game I've been looking forward to! It's qualification for the World Cup, which is where we want to be. We're playing at a Premier League ground because these girls have earned the right, they're deserving of it.

"It surpasses anything I've ever achieved as a player [to manage a national team]. I'm immensely proud."

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