Football Today, July 26, 2022: Millie Bright and Magdalena Eriksson set for huge England v Sweden clash at Euro 2022

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Always look on the bright side of life

England centre-back Millie Bright pays little attention to grief from the previous semi-final ahead of tonight’s clash with Sweden at Bramall Lane.

For the fourth consecutive major tournament, the Lionesses have reached the last four.

Bright was part of the team that lost the World Cup semi-final in 2019 – and it’s now been 13 years since they won at this stage.

But the 28-year-old is confident this year will be different as he bids to reach the Euro 2022 showpiece at Wembley.

Bright said: “We’re on a new journey. Young people have suffered big losses with their clubs, so everyone is going through those experiences in different ways.

“Every semi-final is different. We want to keep building our confidence.

“I think our resilience in every game increases every time, but we will fight from start to finish.

“We stay in our little bubble. Everyone says the pressure is on us, but we stay focused on what we need to do to stay in games.”

Eriksson: Our toughest game

Magdalena Eriksson (right) knows England will be her side’s toughest test yet

Swedish star Magdalena Eriksson is used to taking on Bright and Fran Kirby on the pitch.

And that means the Chelsea skipper knows how tough his country’s clash with the hosts is going to be.

However, she feels her teammates are ready to take on a packed Bramall Lane where the vast majority of fans will be shooting for the opposition.

Eriksson said: “It will be our toughest game so far. We are so ready. This game is what we dream of and we are reaching the next stage. We are going to do everything we can.

“Reaching the final is all we dream of. The path would be amazing, but of course I know a lot of English women and the stadium will be full.

“Winning would be so cool, but I think it would have been no matter who we were up against.

“[The crowd] benefits England, but it will be extra pressure for them to play well and we will do everything we can to make it difficult for them.”

Spurs’ new academy coaches

Jermain Defoe set to return to Tottenham as academy coach
Jermain Defoe set to return to Tottenham as academy coach

Jermain Defoe will join Tottenham as academy coach ahead of the new season.

And, according to Standard, Spurs will also give Yaya Toure a permanent role at the club as they continue to restructure their coaching staff.

Toure, 39, has worked part-time with the North Londoners since December after holding positions at various Eastern European clubs.

Defoe, also 39, is the latest in a long line of former players to start their coaching careers at Spurs.

Scott Parker, Ryan Mason and Ledley King have all worked on it, while Simon Davies is currently in charge of methodology.

Premier League announces new chairman

Alison Brittain will be the next Premier League chairman
Alison Brittain will be the next Premier League chairman

Alison Brittain has been named the Premier League’s new chairman – and she will be the first woman to take on the role.

Businesswoman Brittain will succeed acting chairman Peter McCormick in early 2023.

She was in banking before spending the last seven years as CEO of hospitality company Whitbread PLC.

Brittain has also served on the Advisory Council of the last three Prime Ministers and is delighted to take on this role.

She said: “I’ve been a football fan since I was a child so I’m absolutely delighted to be named Premier League President.

“The game is of huge national importance, loved by so many around the world and can have a huge positive impact on communities.

“It will be a real privilege to be able to help develop plans for the future and to work with all of the game’s key stakeholders to ensure its long-term sustainability and success.”

Hasenhuttl preaches patience

Ralph Hasenhuttl has warned Southampton new boy Sekou Mara will need time to adjust to the Premier League.

The 19-year-old completed his £11million move from Bordeaux yesterday following relegation from Ligue 1.

He scored six times in 26 games for them last season and Hasenhuttl preached the importance of patience.

“Sekou comes here to score goals,” he said.

“He showed he can do it in the French league, now he has to work hard and show he can do it in the Premier League.”

“He’s a young man who will need time to adjust to a new country and a new league, but we’re excited about his potential and what he can become in the future.”

Not that Mara is putting an end to expectations, he said: “I’m looking forward to starting with this team and scoring goals.”

Ten Hag convinced Eriksen

Christian Eriksen has revealed Erik ten Hag helped convince him a move to Manchester United was right for him
Christian Eriksen has revealed Erik ten Hag helped convince him a move to Manchester United was right for him

Christian Eriksen has revealed that Erik ten Hag was a deciding factor in his decision to move to Manchester United.

The 30-year-old Dane opted to move to Old Trafford, rather than extend his stay at Brentford, where he was so influential between February and the end of the season.

But after speaking to the former Ajax boss, Eriksen decided a move to the Red Devils was right for him.

“Very [influential]. I want to come here to play football, I don’t come here just for the logo itself, I want to come here and play,” he said.

“Obviously speaking with the manager and hearing his ideas and having conversations with him about football terms, was great and ideal for me to get the decision and the opportunity to come to Manchester United.”

And he admitted it would be weird to be a home player at the Theater of Dreams, having played for the opposition many times.

“There were some very difficult matches between the two, but always great memories,” he added.

“It’s always been very special to play at Old Trafford. In general, playing against such a big club like Manchester United, there’s always something about that. Like I said, it’s going to be weird to be from. the other side.”

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