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Not a good performance - Hope
 Women's Football News 20 Aug 2004
 
Not a good performance - Hope - 20 Aug 2004 - Women's Football NewsEngland Head Coach Hope Powell admitted after the match that it had been a disappointing result and performance to start off the new season. "It was not a good performance, it was unacceptable," she said. "The players were disappointed at the end but credit to Russia, they deserved the win.
 
"I would have been happy with a draw in the end as they were better than us in patches. We didn't get out of the blocks in the first half and could have been one down in 30 seconds - we were very slow and the players realised this at half time. But we played a lot better in the second half.
 
"We missed Faye White, Kelly Smith and Rachel Brown but that is no excuse, injuries can occur at any time. We just didn't perform on the night, we are better than that."
 
Hope did reserve special praise for full back Leanne Champ, who was one of England's few successes on the night. "Leanne played well, she got forward well and had a sound game all round. To be fair, Kristy Moore and Sue Smith both gave us a bit more up front after coming on."
 
England goalscorer Fara Williams did at least take some consolation from the game with her spectacular volleyed goal in the second half. "It was probably one of my better ones for England," she said. "It came from a good ball in by Sue (Smith) and I am very happy with it."
 
However it turned out to be a high spot on a bad night. "It wasn't an enjoyable game, because we lost. The first half performance wasn't our best, it was not good enough. The players we were missing tonight are all big players in the team.
 
"It's no good saying that we hadn't played many matches as we've all been training hard during the summer, so we should have been sharp enough for the game.
 
"But we can take some positives out of the game, and I felt that we deserved a draw."

 
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