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Arsenal Ladies stars set for derby of the ‘auld enemies’

Five Gunners players are in with a shout of playing in the eagerly anticipated British derby in Utrecht

13 July, 2017 — By Catherine Etoe

Lisa Evans (far right) with team-mates Joelle Murray, Jo Love and Scotland manager Anna Signeul. PICTURE: CATHERINE ETOE

BIG kick-offs don’t get much better than an England vs Scotland derby.

And that is exactly what fans will be treated to on Wednesday when the two nations go head-to-head in their opening UEFA Women’s Euro 2017 match.

A host of players from Arsenal Ladies are expected to feature for their countries at the elite 16-nation tournament, which kicks off in the Netherlands on Sunday.

Five Gunners are in with a shout of playing in the eagerly anticipated British derby in Utrecht. But while Arsenal fans already know what England stars Jordan Nobbs, Jodie Taylor, Alex Scott and Fara Williams have to offer, many have yet to see summer signing Lisa Evans in action.

That should change during the three-week tournament and what better match for Gooners to run the rule over their 25-year-old Scotland midfielder, who can also play up front, than the clash between the two auld enemies?

“Football has really taken off in England,” said Evans, who has built up a reputation among team-mates and opponents as a “lightning fast” winger with an eye for goal.

“We know how good England are and we’re really looking forward to seeing how we match up against them,” she added.

“We’ve heard the Tartan Army is coming out. I’m sure there’ll be an absolute buzz about it. The atmosphere is going to be breath­taking!”

Evans currently boasts 60 caps and 14 goals for Scotland and although a slight niggle kept her out of the 1-0 friendly win over rivals the Republic of Ireland in Kirkcaldy on Friday, she is a regular under manager Anna Signeul.

Having played for top German Frauen-Bundesliga sides Turbine Potsdam and Bayern Munich, Evans is no stranger to European football at its best.

And she’s certainly keen to star in Scotland’s first major tournament.

“Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve wanted to play in the biggest tournaments and biggest stages in women’s football,” she said. “We’re not just going there to make the numbers up.

“We’re there to show what we’re about and show passion.”

England vs Scotland takes place on Wednesday July 19 and is a 7.45pm kick-off. Live coverage can be found on Channel 4.

• For the latest match reports and reactions on the two nations throughout the tournament, and to find out how the Arsenal contingent are getting on, visit: straight after the final whistle blows.

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