Rachel Daly bags double as England edge Italy in Arnold Clark Cup

Rachel Daly grabbed two goals as England continued their winning run in the Arnold Clark Cup.
Photo by Naomi Baker - The FA/The FA via Getty Images

Rachel Daly scored twice as England claimed a narrow 2-1 win over Italy to earn their second consecutive victory in the Arnold Clark Cup on Sunday.

The result means England extend their unbeaten run to 28 matches in all competitions since the arrival of head coach Sarina Wiegman in September 2021.

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Wiegman made nine changes after they thrashed South Korea 4-0 on Thursday, and the team needed time to get going, initially struggling to build through Kiera Walsh in the middle of the park.

Seeing far more of the ball, the hosts began to carve out more and more half chances, especially with Valentina Bergamaschi standing off of Lauren Hemp on the left, allowing the Manchester City winger to get forward and work in space.

England took the lead after 32 minutes when Katie Robinson floated the ball into the box for Daly to head past Italy goalkeeper Laura Giuliani.

Despite dominating the match in the second half, Italy drew level after the hour mark in controversial fashion. Despite the ball appearing to go out of play, Barbara Bonansea crossed for Sofia Cantore and her effort pinged off the crossbar and bounced clear.

With no VAR in play, referee Ivana Projkovska adjudged the ball to have crossed the line.

However, England retook the lead less than 10 minutes later when Daly grabbed her second through another header.

Although both teams fashioned further half chances, there was no more meaningful action with Daly's second goal standing as the winner leaving England in pole position in the standings.