In issuing a rousing good luck message to the women’s football team the Prime Minister said “in any pride it is the lionesses who ruthlessly hunt as a team and bring their prize back home”. He added he was sure they would be victorious but whatever the result the team’s lasting legacy was inspiring more girls and women to get involved in football.
Another good luck message came from the bands of the Coldstream and Grenadier Guards who played a football medley including Three Lions and Sweet Caroline during Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace on Saturday.
The Lionesses’s journey to the final has captured the nation’s imagination and pubs are expecting to see normal trade increase by a third as fans flock to watch the match, which starts at 5pm.
The team hopes to become the first from England to win a major trophy since the 1966 men’s World Cup triumph.
The English and German women’s teams last met in a final at Euro 2009 in Finland but favourite Germany went on to win 6-2. Germany has lifted the Euros trophy in eight of the last 10 tournaments.
Wembley, which has an 87,200 capacity, has sold out which will make it the most attended Euros game ever for men or women.
And to mark the event an all female crew of a Hercules transport aircraft will lead a RAF flypast flanked by two Typhoon fighter jets after the national anthem and just before kick off.
Wishing the team “the best of luck” on behalf of the country, Mr Johnson said: “Your passion for the game, your tenacity in tricky spots and above all your astounding talent on the pitch have already created a summer of fantastic memories for millions of us.”
The results were sold-out stadia, packed fan zones, small children dancing wildly to Sweet Caroline and TV viewing figures “that have seen records crumbling almost as comprehensively as Sweden’s defence did in the semi-final.”
He added: “In any pride it is the lionesses who ruthlessly hunt as a team and bring their prize back home, and I am sure that will be the case against Germany.
“But whatever happens at Wembley this evening, I know that, come tomorrow morning, the pitches and playgrounds and parks of this country will be filled as never before with girls and women who know beyond any shadow of a doubt that football is not just for boys – it really is for everyone.
“That is all down to you and what you have already achieved. And so, when the referee’s whistle blows tonight, I hope that you are every bit as proud of yourselves as England is of you.”
Flight Lieutenant Lauren said: “I am proud to be piloting the lead aircraft for the flypast over Wembley.
“I’ve flown missions all over the world with the RAF but this will be one of the most memorable.
“It’s been inspiring to watch the Lionesses progress and I will be loudly cheering them on as soon as I land back at RAF Brize Norton.”
World Cup Winner Sir Geoff Hurst said yesterday: “It’s fantastic. It’s a great inspiration to all the young females now.
“And already we’re seeing young girls starting to think about playing football.”
England midfielder Georgia Stanway said: “Quite a lot of the England men have been in touch, just wishing us well and asking if they can have a ticket. Sorry lads, we’re all sold out!”
England’s men’s team lost the Euro 2020 final on penalties to Italy last summer and Georgia, 23, who plays for Bayern Munich, added: “We’re just trying to make sure we can do one better.”
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer told the team: “It hasn’t just been about the results you have achieved – fantastic though they have been – but the way in which you have gone about them.
“As a parent, I know how vital it is to see strong, successful role models in sport.
“What you and your team have accomplished this summer will not just be celebrated as a great moment for English football but as one that encouraged and inspired young women like my own daughter.”
And England’s most capped Lioness Rachel Yankey said the team’s success has changed the public’s perception of women’s football.
Rachel, 42, who made 129 England appearances, said: “I am absolutely buzzing about the Lionesses’ success.
“People that were skeptical about women’s football have said ‘you know, I enjoyed watching that.’
“Hopefully, by breaking down boundaries, the new generation will have a whole different experience of women’s football.
“This inspires young girls, but it also educates young boys that football is a game for everyone.”
Rachel was speaking at Greene King’s The George pub in Borough, south London.
Faye Nixon, marketing manager for Greene King Sport, said the brewery will “continue to support women’s football across over 800 of our sports pubs as we see the new season of the Women’s Super League get underway.”
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