England’s biggest enemy at the 2023 World Cup will be fatigue | England women’s football team

As the final whistle blew in Wiener Neustadt on Saturday evening England’s players looked a little flat.

After goals from Alessia Russo and Nikita Parris secured a 2-0 victory against Austria the Euro 2022 winners did not seem remotely like a team who had just sealed qualification for next summer’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

This downbeat demeanour had nothing to do with complacency — as the Lionesses’ manager Sarina Wiegman says winning “never” gets boring — and could not be blamed entirely on the underwhelming venue.

If England — and Euro 2022 quarter-finalists…

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