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England coach optimistic Karen Bardsley will be fit for semi-final

England coach optimistic Karen Bardsley will be fit for semi-final
By Reuters

29/06/2015 at 08:42Updated 29/06/2015 at 08:52

England coach Mark Sampson is optimistic goalkeeper Karen Bardsley will recover from a mystery eye problem in time for the Women's World Cup semi-final against Japan on Wednesday.

Bardsley had to be withdrawn in the 52nd minute of England's 2-1 win over Canada in Vancouver on Saturday after suffering an eye inflammation. She was replaced by Siobhan Chamberlain.

"She is in a better place," Sampson said of Bardsley when he spoke to reporters on Sunday. "It has certainly gone down, the swelling. I think by tomorrow she will be good to get herself on the training field and be up for selection for what is a really big game for us."

There was media speculation after the game that Bardsley may have suffered a reaction to the artificial surface or the small black pellets that make up part of the field, but Sampson said it was not yet clear what caused the problem.

"We still don't know at the moment. We are pretty sure it's an allergic reaction to something. We have done some tests, we have sent some information back to the UK which people are looking at now just to make sure we are aware and we can manage against it happening again. "But she is in a much better place today than she was yesterday," he added.

The 30-year-old goalkeeper, who plays for Manchester City, has started every game for England at the World Cup.

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