Euro 2022: England’s head coach Sarina Wiegman only thinks of “the now” before the semi-finals of Sweden

Sarina Wiegman insisted that ahead of the Euro 2022 semi-finals, only the present matters, despite her impressive record against Sweden and England’s recent defeats in the last four major international tournaments.

The Lionesses have a chance to win a major international tournament for the first time in Sunday’s final if they beat the highest-ranking side at this Euro’s tournament on Tuesday night at Bramall Lane.

Having fallen at that hurdle in each of their last three tournament appearances, England now have the opportunity to reach their first final since Euro 2009, when they finished second to Germany.

Wiegman was responsible for one of those three semi-final defeats while in charge of the Netherlands in 2017, also defeating Peter Gerhardsson’s Sweden at that tournament and at this stage of the 2019 World Cup.

“I think it’s necessary to be in the ‘now’,” said the England head coach at Monday’s pre-match press conference.

“I think you always have to learn from your experiences and take out the things you can take to get better, to learn better. But there’s no use talking about it all the time because it’s now, so why should we talk about it?

“My squad is very different [compared to 2017] because I’m the English manager now and it’s a different situation. I am now in the “now”, thinking “the now”. Sweden have always performed very well in women’s football over the years.

“We’ll take it now. We are England, Sweden is our opponent tomorrow. They have a very strong squad, so do we and we just hope that we play our style of play and that will lead us to victory.”

Asked if England were ready to make history, Wiegman replied without hesitation: “The English team are ready to play their best game against Sweden tomorrow and hopefully we inspire a nation.”

England’s journey to the semi-finals of the World Cup ended three years ago when Steph Houghton missed a late penalty to equalize against the United States, while the Lionesses have never won a penalty shootout.

Wiegman prepared her players for any eventuality, including penalty shootouts. “We have prepared for everything. We talked about every scenario that can happen,” she said. “I think we are well prepared for everything and then we will see how it develops tomorrow.” Euro 2022: England’s head coach Sarina Wiegman only thinks of “the now” before the semi-finals of Sweden

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