England goalkeeper Mary Earps has apologised to her team-mates, admitting that she ‘really let them down’ during the Lionesses 3-2 victory over the Netherlands.
Earps saw her side mount an impressive comeback to beat the Dutch side 3-2 after being 2-0 down, with Ella Toone netting an injury time winner.
Despite the celebration, the Lionesses knew that a two-goal win would have made them firm favourites to qualify for the Women’s Nation League semi-final, but a mistake from Earps in the first half made this unlikely.
Lineth Beerensteyn scored the opening two goals, with the second finding it’s way beyond Earps, who spilled the ball into the back of the net.
Speaking to ITV Sport after the match, Earps admitted: ‘That will haunt me for a long time. I’ve really let the team down today. I’m really gutted.
Lineth Beerensteyn scored the opening two goals, the second finding it’s way past Mary Earps
Earps was in tears after the match, feeling that she had let her side down
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‘I’m sorry my performance cost the girls like that.
‘It could have been a really special night at Wembley. The team were unbelievable.’
It was Earps’ heroics at Euro 2022 that helped the Lionesses win the tournament, and she proved her class during the World Cup this summer, narrowly falling to defeat in the final.
Sarina Wiegman jumped to the defence of Earps, disagreeing with the stand-in captain’s opinion that she let her team-mates down.
‘Of course she didn’t let her the team down,’ said Wiegman.
‘I spoke to her very shortly and I don’t want her to talk like that. We win as a team and lose as a team.
‘When something at the back happens, it’s very quickly a goal. That is part of the game.
‘Of course she didn’t let the team down, everyone does their best and gives everything.
‘You only let the team down when you don’t put effort into the game and we never don’t put effort in.’
The Lionesses face Scotland on Tuesday in the final Group A fixture of the Women’s Nation League.
Wiegman’s side sit second in the group with three wins out of five and are behind the Netherlands on goal difference. The Lionesses will be hoping to be Scotland on Tuesday to boost their chances of qualifying for the Olympics.