England boss Sarina Wiegman has named her final 23 player squad for the Women’s Euros this summer after what would have been a real selection headache.
After announcing her provisional 28 choices at the end of May, fans were itching to see who of that group the Dutch manager would choose to represent England next month.
Former captain and centre-back Steph Houghton has been at the focus of speculation, with her injuries this season making her a doubt for the competition after her playing just five games in the Women’s Super League this season.
It was also uncertain whether Fran Kirby would be included, given she hasn’t played since February due to illness and Wiegman’s wide selection of forwards.
Manchester City’s Chloe Kelly’s return from injury could have also meant that other forward options, Nikita Parris, could have missed out.
England kick off Euro 2022 at Old Trafford against Austria in just three weeks.
However, injuries, unexpected recoveries and fitness issues have meant the final spaces in Wiegman’s squad have been very much up in the air.
And with just two more warm-up games against Belgium and the Netherlands before the tournament begins, the last few weeks of preparation with a confirmed squad will be key.
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So here’s the long awaited 23 player squad Wiegman has selected for this summer’s tournament on home soil…
Forwards: Bethany England, Lauren Hemp, Chloe Kelly, Beth Mead, Nikita Parris, Alessia Russo, Ellen White
Midfielders: Fran Kirby, Jill Scott, Georgia Stanway, Ella Toone, Keira Walsh, Leah Williamson (Captain)
Defenders: Millie Bright, Lucy Bronze, Jess Carter, Rachel Daly, Alex Greenwood, Demi Stokes, Lotte Wubben-Moy
Goalkeepers: Mary Earps, Hannah Hampton, Ellie Roebuck
Changes to the squad can be made until the June 26, but at the moment Houghton and Lucy Staniforth will miss out due to just returning from injury.
Lucy Staniforth, Niamh Charles and Katie Zelem have also not been selected.
Midfielder Jill Scott will be taking part in her fourth European Championship after representing England in 2009, 2013 and 2017.
Meanwhile there will be nine players making their major tournament debuts with England: Ellie Roebuck, Hannah Hampton, Jess Carter, Lotte Wubben-Moy, Alessia Russo, Ella Toone, Lauren Hemp, Chloe Kelly and Bethany England.
Following the announcement, Wiegman said: “I am excited by what is possible for this group. We all know this is a huge opportunity and it is one we have to grab with both hands.
“The chance to represent the nation on such a big stage on home soil is one to relish.”
The Duke of Cambridge visited the squad at St George’s Park prior to the announcement, and his majesty spoke about how important the tournament will be for England.
In a speech to the players, he said: “It’s a big tournament coming up for you, it’s exciting and everyone’s looking forward to it. You are all trailblazers for women’s sport and women’s football.”
“The best of luck. You’re going to have big crowds, good TV (coverage) – it’s going to be an awesome summer, it really is.
“I will be keeping an eye on what you’re doing and be watching the games with the children, and I’ll try to come along where I can to give my support.
“We’re all so proud of you, and you should be really proud of yourselves, where you’ve got yourselves. This is the pinnacle coming right up, the next few weeks for you, and I know you’ll do us all proud.”
talkSPORT will broadcast every England match of the UEFA Women’s Euros tournament this summer, along with the crunch games in the final stages.
The network will also broadcast all of Northern Ireland’s games in England’s group including Norway versus Northern Ireland and Austria versus Northern Ireland, plus updates and analysis from the tournament across its schedule. Full details of our coverage HERE.