Bronze bullish despite Women's World Cup elimination

Lucy Bronze is adamant England can end their semi-final hoodoo and win a tournament after their last-four exit to the United States.

Demi Stokes and Lucy Bronze at the end of England's World Cup campaign.   -  Getty Images

England will get over its semi-final stumbles and win a major tournament soon, according to defender Lucy Bronze.

The Lionesses were knocked out at the last-four stage for the third successive international competition on Tuesday in Lyon as the United States claimed a 2-1 win to reach the Women's World Cup final.

While Jill Ellis' team is preparing for a third-straight World Cup final, England is reflecting on a trio of near misses, having also lost semifinals at Euro 2017 and on the global stage four years ago.

"Of course it's a disappointment — we wanted to win this World Cup, we came here to win this World Cup," Bronze said.
 

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"We've fallen short, we wanted to make it to the final because we haven't quite made it there, but the fact that we are consistently reaching semifinals shows how immense this team is and the strengths of this team.

"Now we've got a tournament [2020 Olympics] as Team GB next year and then we've got a home Euros.

"There's so much ahead of us and we can really push on, and I know for a fact that this team is going to win a trophy at some point."

Despite falling behind to Christen Press' early goal, and then trailing at the break when Alex Morgan made it 2-1, England came close to a second equaliser against USA.

Ellen White, who had scored the Lionesses' first, had a second strike ruled out for offside by VAR and Steph Houghton had a late chance from the penalty spot after another VAR intervention.

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England skipper Houghton's penalty was saved by Alyssa Naeher, the third time in the tournament that Phil Neville's team had failed to convert from 12 yards after Nikita Parris had efforts stopped against Argentina and Norway.

"I think we're too harsh on the penalty takers sometimes," Bronze argued.

"It's a lot of pressure on a goalkeeper to pull out a save in the semi-final of a World Cup. To keep their team on top... that's unbelievable. The Argentina keeper - unbelievable save. The same for Norway, the keeper's made a fantastic save.

"It's a ridiculous comment to say the penalties aren't good enough. We've scored penalties this tournament and we've scored them in the past. I don't think that's an issue at all."

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