England World Cup Roster Breakdown

photo from FA.com
Finally the England world cup squad has been unveiled and it was pure torture in the way they did it, with such a long wait between names however, the fact they got so many famous faces involved was absolutely fantastic. It was great to see the likes of Beckham, Emma Watson and even Prince William getting involved. By doing it this way you can only hope it brings the world cup to outsiders and helps the rise of popularity of the game.
It is going to be a huge tournament for the Lionesses thanks to the rising popularity since their 3rd place finish in Canada back in 2015, plus coming in off the win in the She Believes Cup expectations are currently high and Phil Neville hasn't sugar coated that in any way shape or form, he knows what task lies a head and is pushing players to be their very best. That's why he has picked the best of the bunch to represent the Lionesses this year and here are the lucky 23 who will be representing the country this summer...


Karen Bardsley - Karen was no doubt England's number 1 back in 2015 however, as time has gone on she has found herself fighting to keep hold of that spot. With the challenge at Man City for this spot against Ellie Roebuck, Karen has definitely pushed herself and has quite clearly made an impression to Phil over the time he has been in charge. Karen has such great ability between the sticks and the experience can definitely work in England's favour.

Mary Earps - Since joining Wolfsburg Mary really started to make a name for herself and is gaining quite a few fans along the way, although possibly not getting enough game time as she deserves she has definitely done something right and really earnt her place in the squad. When you watch videos of training session you can see how she has others laughing but once it comes to playing she is switched on, the perfect mix to make the perfect keeper. Even if she doesn't get plenty of game time this year I think she is going to be crucial in future competitions for the country.

Carly Telford - Another player currently fighting for the number 1 spot at her club who is absolutely fantastic. Carly is an absolutely amazing keeper and her decision making is brilliant. It will be interesting to see who ends up playing as Phil's number 1 but I can definitely see it being between Karen and Carly as they both definitely have the experience. I really do think Carly has really stepped up over the past few years and I am glad she is getting the recognition she deserves.


Millie Bright - I think my dad will be glad to see this one as Millie is one of his favourite players. A typical no nonsense player who is absolutely fantastic. Millie can put in those crucial perfectly timed challenges to help out her keeper but down the other end she can also be a treat whether it is from a long range shot that flies into the back of the net or from a header at a set piece. Millie has it all and is going to be crucial in those challenging games, lets just hope she doesn't pick up any injuries as I can see her having a fantastic tournament.

Lucy Bronze - I don't think this pick was ever in doubt. Bronze has really cemented herself into the Lionesses squad over recent years and it is well deserved. Lucy has the ability to put in those crucial challenges but also get down the pitch and help create goals at the other end, she has great shooting ability too so can even grab a few goals herself. I just really hope Phil puts Lucy as a RB where she belongs as she really does perform better in that position rather than midfield where he has had her playing a few times. In my opinion to get the most out of her and to help the team progress RB is where she needs to be.

Rachel Daly - The name I was really hoping to see, in fact I think I told Liam plenty of times I was boycotting the England team if Daly wasn't picked. The best thing about Daly is that even though she is named a defender on the squad list she is more than capable of playing up front if required and has the ability to score some fantastic goals which we saw the other week whilst she was playing for Houston. Since Phil's appointment as manager Daly has become more prominent in England squads and it is great to see as she really has begun to make a name for herself not only here but also in the NWSL. I just really hope she gets plenty of game time as I could see a few goals coming from her and who knows one of those could be crucial. 

Alex Greenwood - This was definitely one of Liam's favourite call ups. I feel Greenwood took a bit of a risk when leaving Liverpool to drop down a league to captain Man Utd but that risk has definitely paid off. She has had an outstanding season for United and has obviously not only impressed Phil but also the fans. Utd have played Alex in a midfield roles a few times too and it has worked well for her so it gives her a bit more of a chance to get game time and make an impact alongside the chance of playing at LB (her natural position). Her ability to play in either role gives Phil a little more depth to the squad.

Steph Houghton - This one was definitely a given and Steph will once again be stepping up and captaining the Lionesses through the world cup. Despite everything Steph has had yet another great season and is really making her was to being one of the greatest CB's in the world. Steph's ability to command the backline and motivate the whole team is amazing and she isn't going to let anything get in her way. Just a few weeks ago we saw her playing on with her arm in a make shift shirt sling, which just goes to show her passion and dedication for the game. She is not only a crucial part of defence but her ability to score from set pieces really helps the squad too especially if they get a free kick in a decent position.

Abbie McManus - Abbie has really stepped up and proven herself for Man City since the departure of Lucy Bronze and in doing so she has also made an impression on Phil Neville. Abbie is one of those players who in previous years has been over looked and under rated so lets hope she gets some game time this world cup to step up and show the world just how good she is. The fact that she can play RB or CB may come in handy if the team end up with any suspensions or injuries.

Demi Stokes - Demi will no doubt be fighting for her place at LB against Greenwood and Phil's choice is going to be. Stokes struggled through the first part of the season through injury and I am just hoping that nothing creeps up again this summer as her pace and tracking back is going to be valuable to the squad. Plus I really don't want her missing any of Man City's season next season through an injury. If fully fit she really is going to be a key part of the team it is just going to be a case of managing her and making sure she isn't put under any risks especially with it being a hip injury she suffered from.

Leah Williamson - Ask me a few years back about Leah and I would have said "who?" she was a player who has definitely made an impression on me over the past few years and I think she could do really well this world cup if given enough time to prove herself. She has been a key player in Arsenal's title win this season and lets hope she can help England win the world cup. I really do think it is Leah's time to shine.


Karen Carney - Karen has definitely pushed for this opportunity and I am really glad it has worked out for her. I aren't sure how much game time she isn't going to get but if she plays anywhere near as good as she has for Chelsea this season then she really will be making a case for more and more game time. Carney is definitely an under rated name and now she is back fit after injury she has started to prove herself once again and obviously Phil has been watching, let's just hope she stays fit for the whole tournament and gets plenty of opportunities.

Jade Moore - Jade is a player who also goes under my radar and I don't really know much about, but the performances I have seen her put in have been good. Again it will all depend on game time but her experience could really come in handy for the Lionesses and she could end up creating plenty of assists and help England on the attack as well as getting back defending. 

Jill Scott - 4th time lucky for Jill and I am so glad to see her name on the list. Jill is an absolutely fantastic player and is in fact my mums favourite player and definitely one of mine. Jill really isn't afraid to get stuck in and put in a challenge to stop teams counter attacks but she is also great at getting the ball into those positions to create a lethal attack for England. Jill's work rate is 100% each game and her passion for the game is shown throughout. I really hope she grabs a few goals herself this tournament as she deserves it. 

Lucy Staniforth - Possibly a surprise name in the squad but after Izzy wouldn't be ready for the world cup I think most people knew that Lucy was finally going to be getting her chance. She has been under rated for far too long and she actually has a really good fan base already, I had seen a lot of people calling for her to be in the team at the beginning of the month and I am glad Phil has taken note. She could end up being a bit of a secret weapon as not many players will have come up against her in the past and won't know how to take her and her play style. I just really hope she isn't sat on the bench all tournament.

Georgia Stanway - PFA young player of the year and well deserved, Georgia has really stepped up and make her name for herself this year, scoring some crucial goals for Man City and helping them along their road to winning the Continental cup and FA Cup. Any goal Georgia scores is worthy of a goal of the season nomination and her long shots could really help in the tournament. All she needs to do is get herself in a good position and the opposition wont know what has hit them. I think this is the tournament where Georgia really ends up becoming a bit of a household name and showing what she can do. 

Keira Walsh - Keira can run that midfield really well and she has shown that over the past few seasons at Man City. I think she could play a key part in getting back to helping in defence but her vision and way to get around the pitch will help with playing passes people wouldn't expect which could really catch the opposition on the back food. Her ability to link up with the different members of the team is also going to prove vital in England's progression. 


Toni Duggan - Toni's game has really excelled since signing for Barcelona and I honestly think she is picking up the Spanish way to play the game. Not only would this help her when one on one with defenders but since playing abroad she has come up against plenty of different opponents from all over the world so she may know what to expect coming up against different teams. Plus she is definitely on form in front of goal and I can see her scoring a few when the opportunity is in front of her. The best part about Toni for me is if she doesn't think the opportunity to shoot is strong enough she will help find another player instead of wasting a chance which to me just makes a perfect player. Plus if Barca end up winning the champions league Toni will definitely be fired up hoping to win more.

Fran Kirby - Fran is a great player don't get me wrong but at the moment she is picking up far too many injuries meaning plenty of time on the side lines. If she can stay fit she is going to be an asset to England and will really help her but if she is struggling through injury and sat on the bench it could end up knocking her confidence a fair bit. I really hope she does stay fit and has a fantastic tournament but I think she may be best on the bench and brought on as a super sub when the opposition is staring to get tired as I can see that being her biggest impact if not completely fit. However, if she does go into the tournament fully fit I can see her making a pretty big impact in getting around the defence and not only scoring goals but creating chance for others too. 

Beth Mead - All day yesterday as the squad was being announced all I could see was people calling for Mead's name and I was one of them. She has really stepped up her game and just like Williamson she was a big part of Arsenal winning the season with her ability on the pitch. Plus her ability to shoot at any angle is going to help the team out massively, are we going to see another wonder goal from the wing?

Nikita Parris - Parris is on fire this year scoring goals for the fun of it whether it be for club or country. Parris is definitely one of England's ones to watch this summer as her pace and skill are definitely going to cause some issues for the opposition. Not only that but with rumours circulating that she is to leave Man City at the end of the season she will be wanting to make an impression on any new club (whether a deal is already done or not) and what better way to make an impression than helping your country win a world cup?

Jodie Taylor - The good thing about Taylor is thanks to her time in the stages she knows plenty of opponents and this could be vital if England come up against the UWSNT she causes all sorts of problems over in the NWSL with the Reign and is picking up goals already (not too far into the season). Taylors experience will definitely come in handy and can she top her Euro 2017 performance?

Ellen White - Another player who's experience could prove influential. Bring White on from the bench as players start to become tired and just what she does. How many times are we going to end up seeing the glasses celebration? Ellen definitely has the passion and commitment to change the game but would I start her if I was Phil? I honestly aren't sure due to all the forwards being such great players. Maybe she will be an impact player though and really help England's hunt for World Cup victory.

So there you have it that is my breakdown of the England squad, I am just gutted poor Williams didn't get in but I don't know who I would swap her for. Click here to see my USWNT breakdown and keep an eye on the blog and my twitter to see more world cup & football content.

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