Lionesses win 8-0 but boss Sarina Wiegman expected more

England’s women routed North Macedonia at St Mary’s.

Lionesses win 8-0 but boss Sarina Wiegman expected more

Sarina Wiegman was left asking for more from her England side despite seeing them thrash North Macedonia in her first game at the helm.

The Lionesses ran out 8-0 winners in an utterly one-sided World Cup qualifier at St Mary’s as Ellen White and Beth England helped themselves to braces with Ella Toone and Beth Mead also on target

Two own goals further widened the gap in England’s first competitive fixture in 804 days – but this was one by name only as they breezed to victory.

Despite the dominance, Wiegman – who led Holland to glory at Euro 2017 – wants to see more clinical finishing going forward.

“I’m very pleased,” she said. “It was a very nice atmosphere, great stadium here, nice atmosphere fans around, very energetic team on the pitch, a win of 8-0 I’m very pleased.

“I think the performance was OK, good, we wanted to create a lot of chances, I think we have created lots of chances, we scored eight, well, six, they scored two.

“But I think we should have scored lots more goals (and) should have been a little better in the final third, (with) the final decision, (with) the final touch.”

Toone opened the scoring with a strike which should have been saved before White doubled the lead and a Julija Zivikj own goal had the hosts three ahead at the break.

White then converted a controversial penalty, captain for the night Leah Williamson seemingly fouled outside the box only for referee Maria Madrona to point to the spot.

Substitute England struck, heading home from point-blank range after Nikita Parris’a cross-cum-shot from Parris fell into the forward’s path.

England v North Macedonia – FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 – UEFA Qualifier – Group D – St Mary’s Stadium
Beth Mead got England’s eighth goal (John Walton/.PA)

Parris missed a couple of chances to extend the lead before England headed home in the last minute and Mead got in on the act to complete the rout.

“You saw intentions (of what) we would like to do,” Wiegman added.

“It isn’t totally new, we just add to it. The players have so much luggage already with their experience – I hope we will improve and and we need some opponents that are of a higher standard than tonight.

“Hopefully pretty soon we get some other opponents too and then we can continue building and adding things to our game.”

That much-improved opposition will not come in the next game, with England facing a trip to Luxembourg – who are just nine places ahead of North Macedonia in the rankings and were beaten 4-0 by Northern Ireland on Friday.

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