Wales manager Gemma Grainger. Pic: Getty Images.

Gemma Granger Tells Wales: Good Start . . . But You Must Now Keep This Standard

By Hannah Blackwell

Gemma Grainger has promised there is far more to come after Wales began their Women’s World Cup campaign with a thumping 6-0 victory over Kazakhstan.

The Wales manager – who celebrated her first victory in charge at the fourth attempt after succeeding Jayne Ludlow – is determined her team build on their flying start to the qualifying campaign.

After watching Wales maintain their focus into the late stages of the match to pile on the goals at Parc Y Scarlets, Grainger insisted the level of performance must be continued when Wales visit Estonia in their next qualifier on Tuesday.

“We want to keep learning, keep getting better,” said the English former FA age group coach.

“We want to enjoy tonight, but we are also going to make sure that tomorrow morning we’re very focused on trying to make sure it’s even better on Tuesday.”

“I feel like we have set a standard, our standard,” she added.

“One of the things we want to do is keep delivering to our standards in every single game. I think we have started that tonight.


Wales were backed by supporters for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic began as they took a first step towards the 2023 World Cup.

“It meant the world to have my family there, the players’ families there and most importantly the fans there,” Grainger said.

“For me it was such a special moment, from the anthem right throughout the while game.

“I am just so pleased that we could put on a performance like that for them.”

Kayleigh Green scored twice, with Tash Harding, Rachel Rowe, Gemma Evans and Ceri Holland all finding the net as Wales dominated from start to finish.

Rowe’s goal was the pick of the bunch, a magnificent 30-yard effort that arrowed into the top corner and would have beaten far better goalkeepers than Kazakhstan’s.


The challenge for Wales, and for Grainger, is to now maintain this standard for the remainder of the campaign with matches to come against Estonia (twice), Slovenia, Greece and France all before the turn of the year.

Grainger added: “It was a whole team performance from the first minute until the last minute and exactly what we wanted. We started how we wanted to.

“The most important thing for us is to tick this game off and now focus on Estonia.

“This is game one of a long campaign and I’m so pleased to score six goals as a team.”


Remaining qualifers:

September 21 at 6:00 p.m versus Estonia (a)

October 22 at 7.15 p.m versus Slovenia (a)

October 26, 7.15 p.m versus Estonia (h)

November 26, time TBC versus Greece (h)

November 30, time TBC versus France (a)

April 8, time TBC versus France (h)

April 12, time TBC versus Kazakhstan (a)

September 2, time TBC versus Greece (a)

September 6, time TBC versus Slovenia (h)


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