The memories will come flooding back to Ellen White when England take on Denmark at Walsall’s Banks’ Stadium in their penultimate World Cup warm-up game.
The 29-year-old enjoyed a proud moment for her country when she scored twice as captain to beat the Danes 2-1 in England’s final Euro 2017 warm-up game.
Two years down the line and White finds herself preparing for another major tournament, her third World Cup, by facing old foes in Walsall on May 25th for a game that England will be desperate to win.
Denmark, however, will be equipped with Ballon D’Or runner-up Pernille Harder and a star-laden cast of their own.
But White is hopeful that the Banks’ Stadium crowd provide the inspiration for an impressive Lionesses performance.
Speaking while visiting an SSE Wildcats Centre, led by Walsall FC’s community programme, White said:
“That game in 2017 is one of my fondest memories as an England player and I had the honour of captioning my country that day right before the Euros.
“I scored twice and we won 2-1 so it was a great game for me but also gave us great momentum going into the Euros.
“Denmark are a great team and got to the finals of that European Championship so we are really excited about playing them.
“They are going to provide a great contest for us going into this World Cup - we have got two big home games now before we go and hopefully there will be a big crowd at Walsall to send us off.
“They have got some very exciting players and so much attacking and technical ability - hopefully they don’t use it to score against us because that is what we want to do to them.
“We have played at Walsall a number of times now and the atmosphere has always been amazing so if we can sell it out and get a good crowd that would give us a massive boost out on the pitch.”
The Birmingham City ace made her debut for England almost a decade ago now and was part of the last World Cup squad that finished third in Canada.
Since then White has had her bronze medal hanging up on her bedroom door and has used the thought of replacing it with a shiny new gold one as her main source of motivation.
The objective is clear, England are going to France to bring home the trophy but before they do there are two final warm-up games to navigate.
“We have never shied away from the fact that we want to be number one in the world and that means beating the best countries,” she said.
“The two teams ranked above us [USA and Germany] are very good and we need to consistently beat those types of teams and do it at big tournaments if we want to be the best in the world.
“I still have my bronze medal from 2015 hanging up on my bedroom door so I use that as motivation to improve not just myself but the country that I play for.
“This is going to be the biggest and the best World Cup that there has ever been so we need to take each game as it comes when we get there.
“The group is a tough one but we haven’t shied away from saying that we can go there, do well and win it.
“I’d really like to replace that bronze medal too – that would be really nice.”
England Women host Denmark in a ‘Road to France’ international on Saturday, 25 May at Walsall FC, KO 1pm. Tickets available at £10/£1 from www.thefa.com/lionessestickets