Such is the depth, the club’s “More Than 11” strapline is fitting. “It’s not just the 11 on the pitch at that moment in time, it’s every single one of us and we’ve bought into it,” said Turner.
Turner has not been to Wembley to watch football but has been there as a rugby league fan to watch her team, Warrington Wolves win the Challenge Cup final in 2009. At the time Everton were competing for the titles during her years in the club’s youth ranks.
After a brief loan spell with Stjarnan in Iceland she returned to England to start playing regular first-team football and feeling the pain of relegation and the joy of returning to the top flight in 2017/18 when the club turned professional, at which time she as appointed captain.
Turner was at Manchester United initially before playing for Everton and she credits her father, who was once on the books at Nottingham Forest, for helping her pursue football after her mother passed away.
“Losing your Mum at such a young age, you have to grow up quickly and it made me so driven to achieve what I wanted,” she said. “It wasn’t long after I’d just joined my first club at nine years’ old, it was only two or three months later that she passed.
“So she didn’t get to see me play much when I was younger. I owe everything to my Dad, trekking me up and down the country and he does the same now. I just want to make both of them proud every single day. I’m gutted my Dad won’t be there at Wembley. Hopefully my Mum will be looking down and I make sure I’ll take my locket with my Mum there so she’s there with me as well.”
Prior to promotion, Turner was studying sport science as an undergraduate at Liverpool John Moores University, then got her Masters in physiology, which will allow her to stay in the game when she eventually hangs up her boots.
“Sometimes as a player you question why you are doing something but I understand from my degree why we do certain things in terms of gym or fitness,” said Turner. “I’m always talking to the sport scientist, I’m a self-confessed geek in that way.
“I’m always looking at GPS data after training on the iPad, seeing what we’re doing numbers wise and whether we are hitting distances and speeds in training. I’m really interested in that and it’s something I could possibly transition into when I finish playing. I’d love to stay in the game.”
The immediate focus is glory at Wembley and continuing Everton’s stunning start to the season.
“Maybe you’d still class us as underdogs because of what they’ve achieved and how they’re established as a top-three team and we’re working towards that,” she said. “But based on the form we’ve started with, people are starting to take notice and think maybe it will be closer than they originally thought.”