England interim coach Hege Riise has named a 24-player squad for international friendlies against France and Canada next month that will form an important part of the preparation for the Lionesses’ European Championship campaign next year and Great Britain’s Olympics journey this summer.
There is a mix of youth and experience in the squad, with uncapped Niamh Charles and Millie Turner joining established stars like Lucy Bronze, Jill Scott, Jordan Nobbs, Ellen White and Fran Kirby.
Manchester United’s Ella Toone keeps her place after scoring on her England debut last time out against Northern Ireland, while Arsenal’s Lotte Wubben-Moy also makes the squad again.
There is a place for Beth Mead, who was initially left out of Riise’s first England selection before being added as a replacement later on. Steph Houghton misses out through injury this time and Lyon’s Nikita Parris is still prevented from being included because of the coronavirus situation.
After meeting for training camp at St George’s Park on Sunday 4 April, England will face France in Caen on Friday 9 April, kicking off at 8.10pm (BST). The game against Canada will then be played at Stoke City’s bet365 Stadium on Tuesday 13 April at 7.15m (BST).
24-player England squad for France & Canada friendlies:
Goalkeepers: Ellie Roebuck (Man City), Sandy MacIver (Everton), Carly Telford (Chelsea), Karen Bardsley (OL Reign)
Defenders: Lucy Bronze (Man City), Leah Williamson (Arsenal), Millie Turner (Man Utd), Millie Bright (Chelsea), Lotte Wubben-Moy (Arsenal), Demi Stokes (Man City), Alex Greenwood (Man City)
Midfielders: Georgia Stanway (Man City), Jill Scott (Everton), Jordan Nobbs (Arsenal), Keira Walsh (Man City), Lauren Hemp (Man City), Ella Toone (Man Utd), Niamh Charles (Chelsea)
Forwards: Ellen White (Man City), Fran Kirby (Chelsea), Beth Mead (Arsenal), Bethany England (Chelsea), Chloe Kelly (Man City), Rachel Daly (Houston Dash)
“We have such an exciting group of players; many have enormous major tournament experience and others have proven themselves capable of competing for England at the highest level,” Riise said.
“It was very important for us to secure fixtures against top opponents in France and Canada. France are currently ranked third in the world and Canada are eighth, so this international window will really test our squad against some of the best in the world.
“This is crucial as we move closer to the Tokyo Olympics, but also important as we continue to prepare this squad to compete at the home EURO next year and the World Cup in 2023.
“I look forward to two exciting fixtures and the opportunity of challenging every player to impress us and stake their claim for a place in the shortlist for GB Football. I have also been watching very closely those players from the home nations who are in contention for the GB squad and I will continue to do so right up until we shortlist next month.”