ERIN Cuthbert says winning trophies with Chelsea is more important than the individual awards she has been showered with.

Although the youngest member of one of the best squads in Europe, the 20-year-old from Irvine was named the English club's player of the season. She was also nominated for the PFA Women's Player's Player of the Year award, while her strike for Chelsea against Lyon in the Champions League semi-finals was voted goal of the tournament.

The considerable downside for Cuthbert is that Chelsea, having won a league and FA Cup double in 2017-18, ended the season without a trophy.

“It has been a really, really good year for me, and I've enjoyed it,” said the attacking midfielder, whose World Cup adventure continues when Scotland play Japan in Rennes tomorrow. “But I've mainly got lowlights, not highlights, after achieving nothing with the club.


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“We've got a good squad and we should be winning trophies. To be in three semi-finals and win nothing is so disappointing. Our league was almost over by October, so we put all our energy into the cups.

“Yes, it was nice to receive the individual accolades I did, but it meant nothing to me if we didn't do it as a team. That's why I play football – to win team trophies.”

Cuthbert was pushed up to the striker's role in the 2-1 loss to England in Nice on Sunday, and could be earmarked for a similar role in the second Group D game against Japan. If West Ham's Jane Ross, who is Scotland's top scorer with 58 goals, is recalled, Cuthbert will revert to the No 10 position.

Japan won the World Cup in 2011 and four years ago were beaten finalists to the USA – who smashed a tournament record 13 goals past Thailand on Tuesday night. Nevertheless, the side ranked seventh in the world failed to impress in Monday's 0-0 draw against Argentina, the lowest seeds in Group D.

“It was a great result for Argentina,” Cuthbert sai. “I saw them celebrating at the end. It looked as if they had qualified. It was their first ever point at a World Cup and shows you what can be done with hard work.

“It's hard to say if the result makes it easier for us to finish second in the group. We can't control anything that happens outwith us. We still want to win the next two games and it doesn't change the situation for us.

“We're not changing our tactics because of that result. We know what we can do and that's what we're going to show.”


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Cuthbert has knowledge of the Japanese captain, Saki Kumagai, having played against her in Chelsea's Champions League semi-final against Lyon. The French side won 3-2 on aggregate before beating Barcelona in the final to retain the trophy.

Kumagai, a 28-year-old central defender, also scored the decisive penalty when Japan won the World Cup and Cuthbert said: “She’s very technical and a very physical defender, likes to get quite tight, and is a great player with over 100 caps.

“She has so much about her, she reminds me a bit of Wendie Renard [the powerful French central defender] in terms of her stature and the way she conducts herself on the pitch.”

A shortage of goals has been Japan's undoing in recent games – they have scored just four in the last five.

“I hope they now don't all come against us,” Cuthbert said. “I know they are in a bit of a transition period, but the young players they have coming through are phenomenal.

“We are definitely not taking this Japan team lightly based on the scoreline against Argentina because this is now a must-win game for them. Nothing changes with us, but they have to win the match and will be giving everything to win it. We need to match that aggression.”