England have adjusted the timing of their training sessions ahead of their Euro 2022 quarter-final due to the heatwave sweeping the country.
The Met Office has forecast that temperatures early in the week could reach as high as 40C.
And the start times for the Lionesses’ sessions on Monday and Tuesday at their tournament base in Teddington, south-west London, have been brought forward to 10.30am, around an hour earlier than originally scheduled.
The team are preparing to play against Spain in the quarter-finals at Brighton’s Amex Stadium on Wednesday evening.
Group stage matches involving Sweden and the Netherlands on Sunday included cooling breaks midway through each half due to the temperatures in England.
Tonight’s fixtures – which will see France face Iceland and Belgium play Italy – will be played in even hotter conditions and may still reach as high as 35C by the 8pm kick-off time.
England emerged from the group stage with a perfect 100 per cent record but Alessia Russo, who has netted three times in as many games, believes the best is yet to come.
“I think obviously the group stages have gone very well. I think we’ve grown in our performances, but also there are lots of things that we still need to improve on and still need to work on,” she said.
“So I think we’re in a good place. Not only in front of goal have we been good, but also defensively we’ve been solid, keeping three clean sheets is important to us.
“So yeah, we’re in a good place. But now this is where the pressure hits in this part of the tournament. We’ve got to be locked in and ready to go.”
Spain boss Jorge Vilda believes his side now face arguably the toughest test of the tournament.
His side edged out Denmark 1-0 in their final Group B match on Saturday to set up a meeting with the hosts.
“I think the quarter-final against England could be the toughest game in the Euros given the level England are playing at,” he said.
“They are the host nation and they have the fans behind them, but that motivates us, we are a team that likes a challenge.”