England goalkeeper Carly Telford is writing a monthly column for The Offside Rule Podcast throughout the 2015/16 football season.
In her second column, the Notts County goalie talks about the start of a new journey with the national team as England prepare to take on Estonia in their opening Euro 2017 qualifier. Telford also discusses the upcoming release of FIFA 16, which features the England Women’s side for the first time.
Start of a new journey
It’s been really nice to be back at St. George’s Park, see each other and chat to each other rather than playing against each other as we have been since we came back from Canada. It’s been great to reflect on that time together and share our stories with the new players; they’ve been keen to know how it was out there.
It’s a new campaign, we can’t dwell on the World Cup too much as we have a new goal now and we have to go out to Estonia and start this campaign as well as we ended the World Cup. The bond is a bit closer now but we’re missing a few people, there are a lot of new faces, but the group is still as tight and the new girls have integrated really well.
It’s not been difficult, a lot of girls know others from their club but it has been a little bit different without some of the players who were in Canada, I do miss Toni (Duggan) and Raff (Claire Rafferty) but it’s nice to see some new faces appearing. The talent now in our leagues is great, the level hasn’t dropped in training and I’m sure the new players in the squad will be keen to prove they’re just as good against Estonia.
There is only Izzy (Christiansen) that wasn’t with us before the World Cup, Amy (Turner) slots in really well, she’s quiet and does her job and enthusiastic to learn but Izzy is coming off a great season with Manchester City, there’s been no problems whatsoever with her coming in. Jess (Clarke) is eager to get her spot back in the team and Mary (Earps) has brought her club form into training; she wants to show she’s as good as she has proven in the FA WSL, it’s a great chance for them to make an impression. We’ve got girls who are getting older now so the youngsters will be keen to try and force them out if they can!
It’s so exciting to see the players coming through in the next few years, they’ll all be fighting to get into this team and that’s exciting for us to see as a squad and even more exciting what we can achieve in the next few years. Mark (Sampson) will try new things and old things and make sure we’re prepared for every game, people asked questions regarding how we played in Canada but it was all a strategy, he always knew what he was doing.
It’s scary but exciting at the same time because we’ve got a great team now, but the team we could have is overwhelming. We’ve got players like Leah (Williamson) and Carla (Humphrey) coming through and it wouldn’t surprise me to see them involved before 2017, the older players would have no qualms if the young players come in because that’s natural. All of us are going to come towards the end of our careers eventually, it’s just a progression, the young talent want to be a part of this and they’ll be knocking at the door with the European Championships coming up.
FIFA 16, we’re in the game
We had the game when we went away to Canada, there’s an Xbox set up at St. George’s Park but not that many are into it. Jordan (Nobbs), Bronzey (Lucy Bronze) and Gemma (Davison) are the ones who play it at home but we’re all excited now to see ourselves in it, it’s crazy to see ourselves in the game.
They’ve nailed some of the girls, hair colour, features, little things like Bass (Laura Bassett) wearing gloves when it’s cold. They’ve taken our celebrations, our personalities, I’m going to put it out there that I look nothing like I do in real life but most of the girls look absolutely spot on!
EA Sports did the feature in February when some of the girls were missing, they sat us in a booth with 50 tiny cameras and then we went to another studio to do mouth movements, facial movements, anything they could take down about your character. But I was actually there on the day when others weren’t so I don’t know what’s happened to my character!
It would help if we had a copy of the game so the more we play on it the more likely we are to get into it! I don’t actually own an Xbox so I might have to invest in one, I’m sure it’ll come away on more trips with us now we can play as ourselves. But it’s really good that young girls can play as us like we did when we younger.
The younger ones are definitely the best at it, Bronzey and Gemma are really good at it and really competitive, Bronzey’s competitive at everything anyway! I was asked who I wanted to play against and I avoided her because she knows everything, all the buttons and I don’t have a clue what I’m doing! But I’m sure we’ll have a few competitions over the next few months…