SUNDERLAND Ladies striker Beth Mead’s selection for the England U23 international camp will be good for player, club and country.
That was the view of Sunderland coach Carlton Fairweather ahead of the opening England friendly in La Manga.
The Lady Black Cats forward is in the Spanish resort as part of a 10-day training camp whose highlights are games against Sweden tomorrow, China on Saturday and USA on Monday.
Mead, who was missed by Sunderland in Sunday’s 0-0 draw at Hibernian, has been in fine touch in pre-season, both in front of goal and setting up team-mates.
Fairweather told the Echo: “It’s good for Beth because she has worked really hard.
“She’s come back for the new season fitter and hungrier, and she’s improved with the increased training she has done. That’s definitely helped her.
“Beth is raring to go for the Super League 1 season and this camp in La Manga can only help her.
“It’s not just training out there, England have three Under 23 matches which Beth will be involved in and hopefully she will do well and the team will as well.”
Mead has been used by Fairweather so far in pre-season up the middle as the main striker and out wide supporting the principal forward.
The 19-year-old has revelled in both positions. She set up Keira Ramshaw to score in the FA Cup defeat at Aston Villa, while she scored one and had three assists in the 10-0 rout of Glasgow Rangers.
Mead set up new signing Suzanne Mulvey for a goal in the 4-2 victory at Everton, so England’s World U20 Cup forward is in fine form.
“What we’ve tried to do is mix up her role,” said Fairweather.
“She’s played out wide, as a number 10 and up front, things which will add to her overall game.
“It will help improve her game, her understanding of the game and hopefully will help give her the opportunity to play for England as well.”