Rovers’ Centre of Excellence Under-16s wrote their names into the history books after claiming the runners-up trophy at the prestigious Dallas International Girls Cup.
Rovers took two teams to Texas for the fourth annual event, which is one of the biggest and most competitive international girls youth tournaments in the world.
Whilst Rovers’ Under-14s lost all three group games, the Under-16s became the first ever English team to progress to the knockout stage.
The Under-16s beat Patuxent Swarm 5-0 and Texas Spirit 9-0, before losing 4-2 to hosts Dallas Texans in their final group game, but secured second spot in ‘Flight A’ on goal difference.
Keira Walsh scored the decisive goal as Rovers beat Texas Spirit North 1-0 in the quarter-finals, before Aisha Yallop scored a late winner against Rio Rapids in their semi-final later the same day.
Yallop was sent off in the final however, as 10-man Rovers slipped to a 4-0 defeat to the New Jersey Stallions.
Centre Manager Gemma Donnelly said: “Bar two or three games throughout the Centre of Excellence season, the Under-14 girls have been undefeated, so it was a new experience for them.
“Equally, we had seven players that didn’t travel with us, because of English Schools FA and England commitments, so we had a good proportion of the squad not involved.
“The Under-16s did really well. Up until about 10 minutes to go in the final, it was a relatively fair encounter. We then conceded a bit of a freak goal and it just collapsed from then on.
“All the girls had a thoroughly enjoyable experience. We were the first English team to ever get through the group stages, with the Under-16s, which was a magnificent achievement for them.
“They all had an amazing experience, given that they all stayed with host families, so they were shown around Dallas and embraced the culture, and have come back having had a really positive experience.”