Aylesbury’s footballing sensation Ellen White couldn’t hide her delight after being named in England’s squad for next month’s FIFA World Cup in Canada.
The former Grange School pupil, who signed for Notts County from Arsenal in 2013, missed the whole of last season after suffering an anterior cruciate ligament injury but a goal and an assist in her first two competitive games for County was enough to earn a return to the England squad for a friendly against China in April.
White won her 50th international cap in that game and has since gone on to score more goals in all competitions than any other top-flight striker this term, winning her a place in England’s World Cup squad
The 26-year-old told Sky Sports: “It feels pretty awesome to be in the squad to be honest. It’s pretty cool to say it’s my second World Cup as well. I’m absolutely elated and I was jumping around when I found out. I feel like jumping around now.
“My main priority earlier in the year was to have a really great pre-season, to be fit and healthy, to get some form and to score some goals.
“I just focused on getting minutes under my belt, scoring and forcing my way into Mark’s (Sampson, England manager) thinking with my form, and that’s what happened really.
“It was fantastic to have something like that to look forward to, to keep pushing me and keep me motivated. It’s obviously very long coming back from an ACL injury but to have that (target of making the England squad) as somewhere where I could potentially be in a year’s time was fantastic in pushing me during my rehab. It was a massive incentive.”
White, who got married while she was recovering from her recent knee injury, admits it was painful watching her team-mates play during her time on the sidelines.
“It’s not nice plain and simply,” she added. “It’s horrible to just be sat there watching your club team-mates and England team-mates playing.
“I was still supporting both teams and wanting them to do well, but in the back of my mind I wanted to be back and playing and that’s why I tried so hard to get as strong and as fit as I possibly could to be ready for that.
“But it’s definitely made it sweeter now that I’m in this squad and that Mark has put his faith in me which I really appreciate.”