Katie's Euro Call-Up
Report by David Brenchley
Page last updated at 7:46PM BST, Monday, 26 March 2018
Katie Startup is relishing the chance to go away with England once again, as she prepares to travel to Bratislava with the England under 19 squad for three UEFA European Championship Elite Round qualifiers over the Easter period.
The Charlton women’s team’s goalkeeper has already represented her country 19 times in all at various junior levels.
But she says it’s been a great experience and helped her “really grow as a player”. “Every opportunity to go away with England is a great opportunity to learn,” says Startup.
“I’ve had some good game time and got some great feedback from the coaches – they’re really happy with my progress; and I’m very happy with my progress. That’s all you can really ask for. All the opportunities this season, with Spain, Portugal and Slovakia; it’s brilliant.”
England face Israel (Tues 3rd April), Slovakia (Fri 6th April) and Germany (Mon 9th April), with the chance to book their place at the Euros in July. The young Lionesses qualified from the preliminary round with three wins out of three.
And Startup says hopes are they can make the final tournament, which will be hosted in Switzerland.
After bowing out of the SSE Women’s FA Cup thanks to a 5-0 loss to 14-time winners Arsenal, Startup says her side can be proud of their performance. The David versus Goliath test was an even contest until the dying stages, with the Gunners going into half time just the one goal to the good thanks to an Kim Little penalty.
It was 3-0 until the 85th minute, when Arsenal grabbed two late goals to end up with a harsh scoreline for the South East Londoners. But Startup says her side put in “a great team performance”.
“Sticking in the game for as long as we did, we put in a very solid performance and I think we did frustrate them and give them a challenge,” the 20-year-old added. “Obviously the end result is disappointing, but for 85 minutes we kept it at 3-0. I think we had a valiant effort.
“They’re a top team that have beaten teams in leagues above us by higher margins so I think we’ve done ourselves really proud – the staff and the players, all the work that’s gone into it has really paid off despite the result.”
With the Addicks still very much in command in the FA Women’s Premier League South title race, Startup reckons the performance will also serve another purpose: “It’s going to be great for our confidence going into the tail end of the season, which is going to be important.”
Everyone at Charlton would like to wish Katie the best of luck :)