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Cyprus Cup Excites Duggan

by Daniel Alston @efc_danalston

Toni Duggan is ready to take her chance when England kick off their Cyprus Cup campaign on Wednesday.

The Everton Ladies forward made her senior international debut against Croatia in September and earned a second cap against France a month later.

England face games against Italy on 6 March, Scotland on 8 March and New Zealand on 11 March.

And as the Lionesses prepare to get the action underway, Duggan admits she is keen to make her mark.

“I can’t wait for it to start,” said the 23-year-old. “It’s a competitive tournament with some good teams so it will be a good test for us.

“Making my debut was amazing, probably the highlight of my year.

“I’d been waiting for that chance for a long time so hopefully now I can push on. This is where the hard work begins.

“It’s difficult to get into the squad these days so my main focus this year is to keep playing well enough to be selected for every England game. I can’t stop working hard just because I’ve made my debut.”

With the new WSL season fast approaching, the Blues' preparations are well underway, but the tournament presents Rachel Brown, Jill Scott and Duggan with an early bout of competitive action.

Being away from club football is nothing new to Duggan having progressed through the international ranks at youth level and she admits maintaining her impressive domestic form is key to further success with her country.

She added: “I enjoy meeting up with the squad and training with the best players every day.

“Hopefully I can keep doing well for Everton and keep getting picked for England and then who knows what will happen?

"I’ve just got to keep working hard in training and doing my best when I get a chance.”

England - Goalkeepers: Karen Bardsley, Rachel Brown, Siobhan Chamberlain. Defenders: Laura Bassett, Sophie Bradley, Steph Houghton, Alex Scott, Casey Stoney, Dunia Susi, Rachel Unitt. Midfielders: Anita Asante, Karen Carney, Jess Clarke, Jordan Nobbs, Jill Scott, Fara Williams, Rachel Yankey. Forwards: Eniola Aluko, Toni Duggan, Kelly Smith. Ellen White, Rachel Williams.

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