South Shields' Demi Stokes in England's UEFA Women’s Euro 2017 final squad

Demi Stokes in action for England against Belgium
Demi Stokes in action for England against Belgium
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Demi Stokes was today celebrating being picked by England for the UEFA Women’s Euro 2017 finals.

The South Shields girl was left heartbroken two years ago when she missed out on selection for England’s World Cup squad.

But there were no mishaps this time although she said she took "nothing for granted" despite appearing in all but two of the Lionesses’ Euro qualifiers.

The Manchester City full-back is in the party Mark Sampson has named three months before the tournament in the Netherlands.

Stokes said: “I never take my place for granted for club or country. You’ve just got to hope you’ve done enough.

“I played quite a lot before the World Cup and I didn’t make the squad that went to Canada, so there was no way I was going to take my place for granted this time.

“I wasn’t worried, as such. I felt like I was in a good place.

"I kept telling myself that I’d done all I could and now it was up to the coaches to pick me. Thankfully they did.

“And the girls have all said they are really chuffed for me which is nice to hear.”

Stokes has been one of the key players in England’s qualifying programme, playing as a left-back, left wing-back and even as a left-winger.

And she feels Sampson's team are genuine title contenders.

“We have earned the right to be among the favourites," said the former Sunderland player.

"We are not just competing anymore. We are competing and we are beating teams.

“We can go into the tournament confident and with our chests puffed out because we have beaten the likes of USA and Germany over the last couple of years.”

Ex-Sunderland defender Steph Houghton leads the squad which includes other former Lady Black Cats Jill Scott, Lucy Bronze and Jordan Nobbs.

England squad: Karen Bardsley (Man City), Siobhan Chamberlain (Liverpool), Carly Telford (Notts Co ); Laura Bassett (Notts County), Lucy Bronze (Man City), Alex Greenwood (Liverpool), Steph Houghton (Man City, captain), Jo Potter (Notts Co), Alex Scott (Arsenal), Demi Stokes (Man City), Casey Stoney (Liverpool); Millie Bright (Chelsea), Izzy Christiansen (Man City), Jade Moore (Notts Co), Jordan Nobbs (Arsenal), Jill Scott (Man City), Fara Williams (Arsenal); Karen Carney (Chelsea), Toni Duggan (Man City), Fran Kirby (Chelsea), Nikita Parris (Man City), Jodie Taylor (Arsenal), Ellen White (Birmingham).