Women's Football

England 4-0 Northern Ireland: Player ratings as Lionesses simply the Beths

Chris Deeley
England took a while to get going, but cruised in the second half against Northern Ireland
England took a while to get going, but cruised in the second half against Northern Ireland / Henry Browne/GettyImages

England needed a late flourish from super-subs Beth Mead and Beth England to emerge victorious from their first ever competitive match at Wembley, with a stubborn Northern Ireland team keeping them scoreless for the first hour of a hard-fought match.

Mead became the first scorer in a competitive England Women's game at the Home of Football within about ten seconds of coming on, and completed the first hat-trick in etc. etc. (you know how this goes) quarter of an hour later, but the overall performance wasn't quite as emphatic as the smaller-than-expected crowd may have hoped.

England player ratings

1. Goalkeeper & defenders

Alex Greenwood
Alex Greenwood hit the bar from 25 yards / Henry Browne/GettyImages

Mary Earps (GK) – 6/10: What do you want? Northern Ireland didn't have a shot on target.

Rachel Daly (RB) – 6/10: Overlapped nicely a couple of times, but got hooked just after the hour mark in favour of...basically not playing a right-back.

Millie Bright (CB) – 6/10: Yep. Good. Fine.

Alex Greenwood (CB) – 7/10: Cracked one off the bar from 25 yards, delivered a couple of nice balls. Not what you'd call 'under pressure'.

Demi Stokes (LB) – 6/10: Also hooked, also not really replaced. Not sure what screams 'we don't respect your attackers' than taking off both of your full-backs and replacing them with a midfielder and a forward.

2. Midfielders

Fran Kirby, Marissa Callaghan
Fran Kirby had a frustrating night against Northern Ireland / Henry Browne/GettyImages

Fran Kirby (CM) – 7/10: Showed some lovely touch to unlock the visiting defence on a number of occasions, but was let down a little by her forwards.

Leah Williamson (CM) – 7/10: Absolutely dominant in the air, should probably have scored at least one first half chance.

Ella Toone (CM) – 6/10: Basically fine, yeah.

3. Forwards

Lauren Hemp had a tidy night at Wembley / ADRIAN DENNIS/GettyImages

Nikita Parris (RW) – 6/10: Constantly probing down the Northern Irish left,

Ellen White (ST) – 6/10: Missed one golden chance when the ball was given her by Burns, and was generally a little profligate.

Lauren Hemp (LW) – 7/10: Hooned one off the bar after about 15 mins, and provided the tricky looped ball for Beth England's goal – which she may still get credit for herself.

4. Substitutes

beth mead
Super-sub Beth Mead was England's hero against Northern Ireland / Chloe Knott - Danehouse/GettyImages

Keira Walsh (45') – 6/10: Was definitely a footballer who was on the pitch for 45 minutes in this game.

Beth England (63') – 7/10: Came on, watched the other Beth score, decided it looked like fun, bopped in Lauren Hemp's looping ball from about half an inch out.

Beth Mead (63') – 10/10: Scored within about five seconds of coming on, can't ask for much more from an attacking impact sub. Oh, except maybe for the second goal she scored ten minutes later. Or the one she scored a couple of minutes after that.

Lucy Staniforth (80') – N/A

Lotte Wubben-Moy (80') – N/A

For more from Chris Deeley, follow him on Twitter at @ThatChris1209!