Thacker's England call-up

AFTER shining on her England debut, a talented Lowestoft-based teenager is aiming to roar back for the Young Lionesses.Last September, The Journal revealed how Laura Thacker had twice pulled on an England shirt and played 90 minutes as she made a successful debut for her country in the opening two games of the European Women's U17 Championship qualifiers.

AFTER shining on her England debut, a talented Lowestoft-based teenager is aiming to roar back for the Young Lionesses.

Last September, The Journal revealed how Laura Thacker had twice pulled on an England shirt and played 90 minutes as she made a successful debut for her country in the opening two games of the European Women's U17 Championship qualifiers.

But after suffering an injury in the final, winner-takes-all qualifying game against Norway - which England subsequently won - Thacker was ruled out of travelling with the successful national squad a couple of months later to New Zealand for the finals.

However, there was some good news last week after it was announced that the Benjamin Britten High School pupil had been selected for the next England U17's Training Camp.


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The camp is being held over the February half term and the Norwich City Girls Centre of Excellence U16 starlet will join teammates Lucy Gunton Jones and Holly Clarke in attending the training sessions.

For all three girls this is not the first time they have been selected in some capacity for England as Gunton Jones and Clarke were both selected two years ago for the U15 side when they faced Wales and won their first international cap.

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This week, a Norwich City spokesman said: 'Laura picked up her first cap in August when she was involved in the squad that travelled to Estonia to take part in the UEFA U17 Championship qualifiers but had to face the disappointment of not travelling with the successful squad a couple of months later to New Zealand in the finals, due to an unfortunate injury she picked up in the last qualifying game.

'For all three girls it is a reward for their continued effort and commitment they have had to put in to achieving a call up.

'Whilst it doesn't guarantee any of the girls a place in the squad for the next U17 game, it does show that they are very much in the mind of the selection team,' the spokesman added.

The trio's call-up was also praised by Emma Fletcher, the Norwich City Football in the Community girls and women's development officer.

'It is always a proud moment when a player you are involved with at your club is selected to represent their country,' she said.

'Over the last few years Norwich have been fortunate to have one or two players involved at anyone time but to have three is fantastic, and sends out a positive message to girls in this county that it is achievable with guidance and hard work and that you can follow your dream and represent your country.

'I would like to wish all three girls the very best of luck and hope they can retain their place for years to come,' Fletcher added about the youngster.

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