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Bristol Rovers defender Louise Hutton has spoken to Women's Soccer Scene about a whirlwind few days which ended with her making her debut for England under-19s against Republic of Ireland last week.
The 18-year-old Filton College student was called up to the squad as a late addition after impressing England coach Hope Powell during the F.A.Women's Cup semi final against Arsenal and became the first player to represent an England women's team whilst with a Bristol club.
"I was planning to get on the coach to watch the Filton boys' team play at Swansea on Wednesday and was watching 'Finding Nemo' when I had a phone call from my mum telling me I had been picked," says Louise. "I thought she was joking at first, but I had to make a quick dash home, grab my kit and head for London!"
England played a practice match against Ireland behind closed doors on the same day, and Louise was able to play a brief part in the game. "We arrived at half time and I was told to get changed, and I came on for the last ten minutes."
Then came the big news the following day - Louise was told that she was in the starting line-up. "I can't really put into words how it felt. Everyone dreams to play for the country, and I was overwhelmed.
"I wasn't actually nervous before the game but I was a proud moment when putting the shirt on and standing for the national anthem, an unbelievable feeling!"
The match, which the squad's final warm-up match before next month's UEFA Championship qualifying group in France, ended in a 3-1 victory for England with goals from Michelle Hickmott, Beth Bailey and Katie Holtham. Louise played a full 90 minutes. "It was quite a good standard, around the same as the Premier League, with a quick tempo. I think I played better in the second half as I was settled down."
Louise must wait and see if she has done enough to earn a place in the next squad but she is keeping her fingers crossed that she is the first of many to make the step. "I'm hoping it will open up the doors for more Bristol players to play for England. We've got some good players in this area and hopefully some will get their chance very soon."
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