While Ellen White somewhat stole the plaudits with a first senior international hat-trick that guided England to a 6-0 win over Northern Ireland on Tuesday, a fellow member of the Lionesses squad was celebrating making another piece of history.Â
After completing 90 minutes of the behind-closed-doors clash at St George's Park, on-loan Everton midfielder Jill Scott became only the second Lioness - after Fara Williams - to reach 150 senior England caps.Â
White's trio of strikes as well as goals from Lucy Bronze and Rachel Daly, and an Ella Toone penalty, secured a comfortable victory, and 34-year-old Scott was pleased to finally secure her personal accolade after waiting almost a year since the side's last match, a 1-0 defeat to Spain at the 2020 SheBelieves Cup.
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"It's a big sigh of relief, to be honest, after waiting a year for it," Scott said. "I'm just so overwhelmed.Â
"The girls did a little presentation to [me] and it was so uncomfortable as I just had to sit there and listen to all these plaudits. I can't believe it actually but I'm really, really happy."
The plaudits for Scott reaching the incredible figure have kept flowing in, with the midfielder revealing that both the Duke of Cambridge and David Beckham had congratulated her.Â
She also disclosed that the kit men had printed her three special shirts for the occasion, and she swapped one of them with Northern Ireland's Rachel Furness, who she first came up against as a child playing for Chester-le-Street.Â
"I got a handwritten letter from Prince William," she said. "Around 12 years ago I was at an appearance with him and I slipped in a five-a-side game and actually kicked him, and he remembers it!Â
"Every time I see him, he's like 'Jill, watch them tackles, watch them tackles', and even in the 2015 World Cup, he video called the team and told me to watch out for yellow cards.Â
"To get messages like that seems very surreal. I even got a video message from David Beckham! He was always a player I looked up to and it really does mean the world to me.Â
"It was really kind of the kit men to print me three shirts, and I did swap one with Rachel. Football has a weird way of working out and we've played against each other since under-10s so it was nice to play her on such a special occasion."Â
The latest camp - which lasted only five days - was the first that interim head coach Hege Riise, as well as assistant Rhian Wilkinson, have taken charge of. It has, of course been different to those in the past, but Scott branded it as a "step in the right direction".Â
"It's been difficult because of Covid restrictions and obviously rightly so because we know we have to keep everybody safe," she added. "We've spent a lot of time in our room and a lot of time on Zoom calls, but we're all so grateful just to have had the chance to play.Â
"The coaches have been really good. Hege [Riise] and Rhian [Whilkinson] have been straight in there, very confident, they know what they want from us and I think it's worked really well so far.Â
"Obviously, it's only been a short camp and we know that you can't change the world in five days, but it's definitely a step in the right direction."Â
Another sign of Scott's humility is perhaps the decision she made to let debutant Toone take the penalty which England were awarded in the 75th minute, although she did joke that she was worried she would have missed it.Â
"They were saying 'Jill, you take it, you take it', but I know that it's important we stick to the process," Scott said.Â
"We were never going to underestimate Northern Ireland but we're preparing for when we play the best teams in the world, and you have to stick to doing the right things.Â
"So, I'm just trying to cover the fact that I probably would have missed it and probably ruined the day. That's my professional answer, anyway!"
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