Birmingham goalkeeper Sophie Baggaley excited to get first England Women call-up

Last updated : 24 October 2016

Baggaley, the 19-year-old Birmingham goalkeeper, was drafted in for the Lionesses' friendly with Spain after Liverpool's Siobhan Chamberlain withdrew with an abdominal strain.

Baggaley was preparing to take in her local team's National League clash with Tranmere on Saturday when her phone rang with good news

She was soon packing her bags and within 24 hours she was joining her new team-mates at the LaLiga giants' training complex

"When I found out about the call-up I was sitting down to watch the Soilhull Moors match," she told FATV

"The goalkeeping coach Lee Kendall gave me a ring and told me I'd be coming to Spain, and now I'm in Madrid

"It's crazy

From being in Birmingham to being at the training ground of Real Madrid is really exciting

"To get called up for the first time in obviously an honour and a bit of a shock

I didn't expect it."

Baggaley is not a completely new face, having worked with the team at St George's Park and worn the Three Lions at Under-17, U19, U20 and U23 level.

"I have been brought into training sessions when I was part of the Next Gen squad but to be called up to the senior squad officially is a dream come true," she said.

"Hopefully I can learn a lot this week."

Tuesday's game at Guadalajara's Estadio Municipal Pedro Escartin is the second part of a friendly double header against European rivals

Friday saw Mark Sampson's team draw 0-0 with France in Doncaster

That was a creditable result against opponents England have not beaten since 1974, but Sampson is still looking for refinements.

"To get through 90 minutes against a very good French side without your goalkeeper having to dive, you know that's a very, very good defensive performance," he said

"But we need to improve with the ball

We had so many moments on the counter-attack where we picked the wrong pass and lacked a bit of composure.

"But as the confidence grew, that got better

We saw that with the chances we created."

The draw for Euro 2017 takes place in Rotterdam on November 8, with England among the top seeds.

Source : PA

Source: PA

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