Euro 2022: Beth Mead never 'dreamt' of scoring hat-trick in Norway win

England’s Euro 2022 hero who never ‘even dreamt’ of scoring a hat-trick in 8-0 win over Norway: Beth Mead, 27, started playing football aged 6 with ‘rough boys’, has a degree in Sport Development and feels more confident thanks to Olympics 2020 snub

  • Beth Mead, 27, has been praised for her hat-trick against Norway last night 
  • But said her stunning performance was beyond anything she had dreamed of 
  • Arsenal forward Beth, from Yorkshire, started playing football at the age of six

She’s been praised for the hat-trick that propelled England to a European Women’s Championship record 8-0 win over Norway on Monday in a ruthless display that sent the host nation into the quarterfinals with a game to spare.

Yet Beth Mead, 27, who has now scored a total of four goals in England’s first two games, admitted her stunning performance was beyond anything she had dreamed of.

‘I don’t think I even dreamt of this, but I’m just so happy I can get the goals again to help the team. Unbelievable night. I can’t believe it,’ she said.

Arsenal forward Beth, from North Yorkshire, started playing football at the age of six alongside ‘boys who were quite rough’ – but she went on to excel and soon balanced a professional career with a degree in Sport Development from Teesside University.

Beth made her debut for England’s senior team in 2018 and played in the 2019 Women’s World Cup in France. However she missed out on the squad for the 2020 Olympics. 

She credited the snub with driving her passion last season and said she now feels more ‘confident’.  

Beth Mead (pictured), 27, who has now scored a total of four goals in England’s first two games, admitted her stunning performance on Monday was beyond anything she had dreamed of

‘I don’t think I even dreamt of this, but I’m just so happy I can get the goals again to help the team. Unbelievable night. I can’t believe it,’ Beth (pictured) said

Arsenal forward Beth (pictured), from North Yorkshire, started playing football at the age of six alongside ‘boys who were quite rough’ – but she went on to excel and soon balanced a professional career with a degree in Sport Development from Teesside University

Beth made her debut for England’s senior team in 2018 and played in the 2019 Women’s World Cup in France. However she missed out on the squad for the 2020 Olympics

‘Hopefully I can take that into the Euros,’ she told the Guardian last month. ‘I’m in a good place, I’m in a good headspace, my football has been good so I’m just trying to channel that energy in the right way.’

Elsewhere, speaking about her passion for football as a youngster, she told Her Football Show: ‘I just loved all kinds of sports. Cross country, cricket – anything.

‘I used to go to a local Sunday morning session and I’d play with the boys. I loved it from the first minute. My mum was warned that the boys were quite rough, and was asked if I’d be okay. But she said I was rougher than most of the boys.’

After starting out at a team called California Girls, Mead was picked up by the Middlesbrough Centre of Excellence, now known as Middlesbrough RTC.

She moved to Sunderland aged 16 and juggled a professional career with a degree in Sport Development from Teesside University and commitments as a coach to local schoolchildren. 

Mead signed with current club Arsenal in 2017, following in the footsteps of England teammate Jordan Nobbs, who was an inspiration to her growing up. 

Beth credited the snub with driving her passion last season and said she now feels more ‘confident’

Elsewhere, speaking about her passion for football as a youngster, Beth (pictured) told Her Football Show: ‘I just loved all kinds of sports. Cross country, cricket – anything’

‘She was in the age group above me [at the Centre of Excellence] but was known for playing for the England youth teams and a huge talent,’ Beth said. 

‘I followed a similar pathway to her. She was at Middlesbrough, then went to Sunderland and now I’m at Arsenal with her. I told her that I was a stalker – I’m just following her!’

On Monday, Beth scored twice in four minutes of the first half, and completed the hat trick in the second with a tap-in from close range after Kiera Walsh’s shot was parried. 

Speaking after her performance, she said: ‘It’s an incredible feeling to feel as I do now… An unbelievable night.’ 

Arsenal manager Jonas Eidevall, who manages the footballer at club level, hailed Beth’s performance as the best by a wide player at Euro 2022.

On Monday, Beth scored twice in four minutes of the first half, and completed the hat trick in the second with a tap-in from close range after Kiera Walsh’s shot was parried

Arsenal manager Jonas Eidevall, who manages the footballer at club level, hailed Beth’s performance as the best by a wide player at Euro 2022

‘England played them to pieces,’ he told the BBC. ‘I’m astonished that Norway didn’t change anything.

‘Don’t take anything away from Beth Mead. It’s the best performance of a wide player at this tournament, and there have been plenty. I hope wide forwards are watching this on TV, this is what you need to do to score goals.

‘England looked two or three levels above Norway. I expected an even game, but it was very impressive from England.

‘It’s against Norway who were coming here to be medal contestants. Norway weren’t even on the pitch today. England had so much time and space and what England did with that space was amazing.’

No team – men or women – had previously scored seven goals at a European Championship finals.

‘Don’t take anything away from Beth Mead (pictured). It’s the best performance of a wide player at this tournament, and there have been plenty. I hope wide forwards are watching this on TV, this is what you need to do to score goals,’ he told the BBC

Beth unsurprisingly then went on to be given the Player of the Match award after the game

Earlier this month, England stars revealed they have spoken to Nike about scrapping white shorts from their kit over concerns of playing on their periods.

The design is causing anxiety among players and discussions have taken place with the FA and their official kit manufacturer over the possibility of switching up the bottom half of the kit, according to the Telegraph.

‘It’s something we’ve fed back to Nike,’ said Beth. ‘Hopefully they’re going to change that [the colour]. 

‘It’s very nice to have an all-white kit but sometimes it’s not practical when it’s the time of the month. We deal with it as best we can. We’ve discussed it as a team and we’ve fed that back to Nike.’ 

Asked if there was any preference on which colour could be brought in, Beth explained: ‘I’m pretty easy, I’m pretty laid back to be fair. As long as I’m playing for my country, I don’t mind what I wear.’

There is an understanding from players that moving away from the traditional England colour scheme of all white is a tough call. 

Arsenal forward Beth’s hat-trick was her fourth goal of the tournament in just two games

Two days later it was announced that England will continue to wear white shorts during this summer’s European Championships. 

An FA spokesperson, via The Athletic, said that changing colours ‘will be taken into consideration for future designs’ rather than changed imminently.

‘We recognise the importance and want our players to feel our full support on this matter. Any feedback made by them will be taken into consideration for future designs,’ they added.

‘We will continue to work in close consultation with our partners Nike, while still following guidance from tournament organisers where possible in terms of colour choices.’

Nike, England’s kit manufacturers, added: ‘We absolutely hear and understand the concerns of our athletes that wearing light coloured apparel while having their period can be a real barrier to sport.

‘We are deeply engaged with our athletes in the process of designing solutions to meet their needs, while also consulting the clubs, federations and sporting associations that set uniform standards and colours.’

The issue has also been raised in tennis, with officials at Wimbledon ordering players to continue to wear white to keep within their strict dress code.

Protests were held outside Centre Court ahead of the women’s singles final.

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