Manchester United Women

Man Utd Women international roundup - Jackie Groenen nets screamer

Jamie Spencer
Jackie Groenen netted a stunning goal for Netherlands on international duty
Jackie Groenen netted a stunning goal for Netherlands on international duty / ANP/GettyImages

Manchester United had 13 players called up for senior international duty by seven national teams across Europe for April's matches.

Several United stars performed well in World Cup qualifiers or friendlies, although it ended up being a disappointing international break for a few others.

Here's a summary of how all of United's internationals fared in April...

Ella Toone, Mary Earps, Alessia Russo, Katie Zelem (England)

Ella Toone shone for England in back-to-back World Cup qualifiers against North Macedonia and Northern Ireland. The 22-year-old started both games for the Lionesses, scoring a hat-trick in the first and getting another goal in the second. She also managed three assists.

Mary Earps has received a boost of confidence from England boss Sarina Wiegman that she is the Lionesses' number one going into Euro 2022. The United goalkeeper sat out the game in North Macedonia but started against Northern Ireland, keeping a clean sheet.

Alessia Russo and Katie Zelem started neither game but both came off the bench for the final 19 minutes plus stoppage time against North Macedonia. They were unused substitutes in Belfast.

Martha Thomas (Scotland)

  • Scotland 0-2 Spain

Martha Thomas was among a number players who publicly called out the Scottish FA for only opening a small section of Hampden Park for a World Cup qualifier against Spain.

She led the Scotland line against a strong Spanish team and did have the ball in the net at one stage but it was ruled out because of an offside flag.

Hayley Ladd, Carrie Jones, Chloe Williams (Wales)

  • Wales 1-2 France
  • Kazakhstan 0-3 Wales

Wales acquitted themselves well this month, losing only narrowly to European giants France, before a comfortable win on a long trip to Kazakhstan in two World Cup qualifiers.

Hayley Ladd played 90 minutes of both games in the centre of defence, as she has done with United in recent club matches.

Carrie Jones impressed in the 'number nine' role against France, causing problems for world class opponents, and appeared off the bench in Kazakhstan. But there were no minutes for Chloe Williams, who has spent much of this season on loan from United to Blackburn.

Vilde Boe Risa, Maria Thorisdottir (Norway)

  • Norway 5-0 Kosovo
  • Norway 2-1 Poland

United pair Vilde Boe Risa and Maria Thorisdottir both saw good game time as Norway won each of their World Cup qualifiers against Kosovo and Poland on home soil - the returning Ada Hegerberg took the headlines in the first games thanks to a hat-trick on her international comeback.

Thorisdottir played two full games at centre-back, while Vilde Boe Risa played 90 minutes against Kosovo, assisting Hegerberg's hat-trick goal on the hour mark. The midfielder didn't start against Poland but did appear from the bench.

Jackie Groenen (Netherlands)

  • Netherlands 12-0 Cyprus
  • Netherlands 5-1 South Africa

United fans are still eagerly awaiting Jackie Groenen's first goal for the club, yet she has something of a reputation for stunning international strikes. Her long-range extra-time winner for Netherlands against Sweden in the 2019 World Cup semi-final stands out and a rasping drive that clipped off the underside of the crossbar got the Oranje off the mark in a friendly win over South Africa.

A few days earlier, Groenen had bagged a hat-trick of assists as Netherlands crushed Cyprus in a heavily one-sided World Cup qualifier, setting up two of Arsenal striker Vivianne Miedema's six, as well as one for veteran midfielder Sherida Spitse.

Ona Batlle (Spain)

  • Spain 1-1 Brazil
  • Scotland 0-2 Spain

Ona Batlle played the full game for Spain in a glamour friendly against Brazil to kick-off La Roja's international break. She didn't make the starting XI for the follow-up World Cup qualifier against Scotland a few days later but was brought on in the closing stages when it was still only 1-0.

It meant that Batlle did get a brief chance to face United teammate Martha Thomas and the pair were seen swapping shirts at the end of the match.

Signe Bruun (Denmark)

  • Malta 0-2 Denmark
  • Denmark 2-0 Azerbaijan

Having missed United's final game before the international break, Signe Bruun joined up with the Denmark squad for back-to-back World Cup qualifiers but was ruled out of facing Malta.

The hope was that the on-loan striker would still remain in contention to feature against Azerbaijan in her country's second match but again was unable to take part.

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