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  • By Paul Lagan

Quality chocolates for a quality player - Cuthbert: It’s the time for giving

Erin Cuthbert. Photo by Paul Lagan

Erin Cuthbert will be munching chocolates from now until December 28 when the Scotland striker returns after her Christmas break.

She starred in the 4-0 defeat of Brighton and Hove Albion on Sunday afternoon in Chelsea’s final WSL1 league match of the year. She did not score but was an instrumental figurehead in attack, which fans recognised by giving her a box of confectionary.

Clutching the box, she said: “It’s Christmas’s time, isn't it? It’s the season for giving. The fans have been great. It was really nice they came in their numbers today, and some were in fancy dress as well. Support has grown in every single game, it’s just amazing we are getting such support and it helps us on the pitch.”

Help was needed as it was a tough game which only saw the first goal from Magdalena Eriksson come in the 66th minute.

Further goals from So Yun-Ji and a brace from substitute Beth England eventually wore the home side down.

Cuthbert, 20, said: “It was tough and to be honest I thought the pitch as terrible. I don't think it’s the standard we should be playing at. It should be cut. But we don't make excuses. We find ways, and in the second half we did, like we always do.”

Patience and experience were key to this victory which keeps the Blues in third place but hot on the heels of Arsenal and Manchester City. Something Cuthbert fully appreciates.

“Yes, yes. We knew Brighton would match us, they have done so in the past three times we have played them. But our fitness showed in the end and we wanted it more than them.

“We have left ourselves with a lot to do. But it’s time for us to enjoy being in the chasing position. We were the leaders last year. It’s a different type of pressure. It was a pressure we felt last year, so I’m sure Arsenal and Man City are going to be feeling a lot of that pressure right now. So it’s about if they can handle it. We just have to do our job.”

Cuthbert is also the star for Scotland and they were drawn at the weekend in the same group as England, Argentina and Japan for next year’s World Cup in France.

“It’s exciting, it’s very exciting, she said.

“I don't think we should get caught up too much in the England game. It’s a great opening game, and great for the fans to get out and support us. But at the end of the day, we still have to beat Japan and Argentina, to put on a good show against them. It won’t be over in one game. So whatever the scoreline is in the England game, we still have another two after that.”

Has there been any banter between her and the England players in the Chelsea changing room?

“No,” she said. “I’m keeping quiet just now, but maybe closer to the time. We have been focusing on the league games.”

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