The Duke of Cambridge has sent a message conveying good luck wishes to the England women’s football team ahead of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada.
“It gives me great pleasure to wish Mark Sampson, the England squad and all of the backroom staff the very best of luck for the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada,” Prince William said in his message. “As President of The FA, I am delighted that women’s football has become such a central part of our daily work across the country. The senior England team are the pinnacle of this and I am sure all football fans will join me in hoping they do well over the coming days.”
“Having had the chance to meet the squad and follow their progress in qualifying, I know they are determined to do their very best at the finals. And I believe their involvement will inspire more girls up and down the country to get involved in the game. A positive performance in Canada will only further the growth of the women’s game. So good luck to all involved and… come on England!”
The Duke of Cambridge, who is a proud new father to Princess Charlotte, is President of the Football Association. Late last month, he met the women’s football team and Head Coach Mark Sampson at St George’s Park, and was presented with a tiny England shirt for his young daughter.
The FIFA World Cup will start on June 6th, with matches being played in Edmonton, Moncton, Montreal, and Ottowa. The final will be held in Vancouver on July 5th.
The ‘Lady Lionesses’, as the English women’s team are known, will play their first game against France in Moncton tomorrow. Ranked sixth in the world, the team will also play against Mexico and Colombia in the group stage. 2015 marks England’s fourth time taking part in the FIFA Women’s World Cup. On three previous occasions – in 1995, 2007, and 2011, – the Lionesses reached the quarter-finals.
Over two million women play football in the UK, making women’s football one of the country’s leading sports. Prince William, who is an avid supporter of Aston Villa himself, will undoubtedly encourage his daughter Charlotte to take part in the game, though, of course, when she is a little older.
Featured photo credit: Adam Clark via Flickr