England Women: Beth Mead returns to final Lionesses squad of 2023

England play their final two games of a rollercoaster 2023 next month with back-to-back UEFA Nations League fixtures against the Netherlands and Scotland.

The headline news is the return of Euro 2022 top scorer Beth Mead, who is recalled for the first time since recovering from the ACL injury she suffered while in action for Arsenal last November.


Mead made her return for the Gunners last month as a substitute in their dramatic WSL win over Aston Villa, with her first start post-injury coming just this past Sunday when Arsenal beat Brighton.

Grace Clinton, who continues to impress on loan at Tottenham from Manchester United, keeps her place in the squad following a first call-up in October. The same goes for 19-year-old Khiara Keating, now firmly established as Manchester City’s number one at club level at the expense of out of favour Ellie Roebuck, who misses out on England selection this time.

Just three months on from the World Cup final against Spain in Sydney and the chance for immortality, the reigning European champions have lost two of their opening four Nations League games. Their chances of reaching the finals stage and claiming another major trophy have become slim and the Lionesses likely need to win both remaining matches, overturning a -1 head-to-head goal difference with the Dutch in the process, and also hope that Belgium drop points in theirs.

England lost to Belgium last month

England lost to Belgium last month / ANP/GettyImages

The Netherlands game takes place at Wembley on 1 December, before travelling north of the border to face Scotland at Glasgow’s Hampden Park four days later. Big crowds are expected at both.

England will face a relegation playoff if they stay third in the final group standings. Finishing last would automatic relegation to Group B but Scotland are unlikely to make up that gap.

Great Britain’s hopes of qualifying for the 2024 Olympics also rest on England’s progress in this competition, with only the two finalists (other than hosts France) given a place in that tournament.

“We know we’ll need to win our last two games of 2023 and we’ll give everything we have for that outcome,” Wiegman said. “This group have shown resilience and strength of character time and time again and I have absolutely no doubts we’ll be ready to go when the whistle blows for both fixtures.

“We always embrace the opportunity to play at Wembley, it’s been home to some of our biggest and happiest occasions. We’ll need the crowd to play their part and continue the incredible backing they’ve shown for the team. They’ve always been there when we need them and we’ll need them once again. An away fixture against Scotland is also an occasion we’ll all look forward to, but we’ll take it one game at a time.”

Grace Clinton

Grace Clinton retains her place in the England squad / Morgan Harlow/GettyImages

Goalkeepers: Mary Earps (Man Utd), Hannah Hampton (Chelsea), Khiara Keating (Man City)

Defenders: Millie Bright (Chelsea), Lucy Bronze (Barcelona), Jess Carter (Chelsea), Niamh Charles (Chelsea), Alex Greenwood (Man City), Maya Le Tissier (Man Utd), Esme Morgan (Man City), Lotte Wubben-Moy (Arsenal)

Midfielders: Grace Clinton (Tottenham), Fran Kirby (Chelsea), Georgia Stanway (Bayern Munich), Ella Toone (Man Utd), Keira Walsh (Barcelona), Katie Zelem (Man Utd)

Forwards: Rachel Daly (Aston Villa), Lauren Hemp (Man City), Lauren James (Chelsea), Chloe Kelly (Man City), Beth Mead (Arsenal), Alessia Russo (Arsenal)





22 September 2023

England 2-1 Scotland

Bronze, Hemp; Hanson

Stadium of Light, Sunderland

26 September 2023

Netherlands 2-1 England

Martens, Jansen; Russo

Stadion Galgenwaard, Utretcht

27 October 2023

England 1-0 Belgium


King Power Stadium, Leicester

31 October 2023

Belgium 3-2 England

De Neve, Wullaert (2); Bronze, Kirby

Den Dreef, Leuven


Source of the article

Author: XenBet