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Kirby and England finalising World Cup preparations

29 May 2015

Lionesses take on hosts Canada

Fran Kirby and the England Women’s team will put the finishing touches on their preparation for this summer’s World Cup when they take on hosts Canada this evening, 7pm (local time).

The Lionesses, who flew out to North America on Monday morning, will travel to Hamilton from their Toronto base for their final warm-up match.

England defeated Canada in the final of the Cyprus Cup earlier in March, one of eight matches that they have played since securing their qualification, and tonight’s game will be broadcasted live on the BBC Sport website and the Red Button from 11.50pm.
Around 23,000 spectators are expected to turn out this evening and Three Lions head coach Mark Sampson says that the clash will give his side the opportunity to acclimatise to the Canadian atmosphere.

He said: "At this stage, it’s about replicating a World Cup scenario as best as possible. We are up against a fantastic Canadian team, one that will be there or thereabouts in this tournament.

"They have got a good manager and good players, and they will have a huge home support so it will be a good test for us on the field, and off it too, in terms of how we can deal with a partisan crowd.

"We've got some history with Canada and every time we play each other they are good games. We will enjoy that challenge but we are also realistic. The players are just getting off the plane, really. We are still adapting to Canadian conditions.

"Most importantly it's an opportunity to play on [an artificial pitch]. To play a competitive game on this surface will be a big boost to us going into the tournament."

England open their competitive World Cup campaign against France on June 9th, before taking on Mexico and Colombia on June 13th and 17th respectively.

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