Lauren Hemp plays her part in England Lionesses win in Czech Republic
PUBLISHED: 09:09 13 November 2019 | UPDATED: 09:09 13 November 2019
North Walsham’s Lauren Hemp came on as a second half substitute as England Women battled through the snow to beat Czech Republic 3-2 in Ceske on Tuesday night.
The 19-year-old Manchester City forward came on as a 64th minute substitute for Nikita Parris with the score at 2-2 before Leah Williamson's late deflected strike ensured the year ended on a positive note for Phil Neville's side.
England paid for a lacklustre start as Tereza Szewieczkova put the hosts in front after 15 minutes.
The Lionesses replied with two goals in the space of three minutes through Beth England and Arsenal's Beth Mead, only for Slavia Prague forward Szewieczkova to equalise just before the half-hour with a 25-yard effort.
Williamson's first goal for England relieved some of the pressure starting to build on Neville after an indifferent end to 2019 following an impressive showing at the World Cup.
"We got the win I think that was what I demanded for the team. I've got to say I think we should be beating the Czech Republic by more than three goals to two," Neville said.
"We dominated the second half, were careless a little bit in possession in terms of the final pass, the final run, the final cross - but I suppose it is the last game of the year, we wanted to finish on some kind of win and we did that."
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Neville added on BBC Sport: "The players have put an unbelievable effort in this past 12 months. We know the last three months haven't been good enough for myself or the team, we know that, and we take responsibility for that.
"We shouldn't take anything away from the last 12 months in terms of where we have taken women's football and the Lionesses.
"Now the real hard work begins for myself and the players in terms of coming back after Christmas when we go to (the) She Believes (Cup) and to perform to the levels which I believe and they believe we can."
England were without captain Steph Houghton, Alex Greenwood, Jodie Taylor and Ellen White as Neville looked to both manage player fitness and utilise his squad.
Chelsea goalkeeper Carly Telford replaced Mary Earps as one of five changes from the Germany game, with Demi Stokes, Millie Bright, Lucy Staniforth and Blues forward England all coming in.
Ahead of Tuesday night's match, Neville said he took full responsibility for his side's recent run of "unacceptable" poor performances.
While the end result may have been a morale-boost, Neville is expecting more when the squad come together again in early 2020.
"It is just important to win games of football. When I came into the job I said winning was the most important thing, and I still believe that," said Neville, who was appointed as head coach in January 2018.
"The conditions were difficult, but I think what I'm really looking forward to now is the hard work that now begins in terms of getting us back up to a level where we know we can (be)."
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