This summer, England Women will compete at Euro 2017 which takes place in the Netherlands. Head coach Mark Sampson named his 23-player squad for the tournament today, over three months before it begins. Women’s Euro 2017 kicks off on 16 July until the 6 August. The Lionesses are in Group D. They will begin their Euros campaign against Scotland in Utrecht on 19 July before facing Spain in Breda on 23 July and Portugal in Tilburg on 27 July.
While it is unprecedented to name a squad this far in advance, Sampson said: “Naming the squad early is something we’ve thought about for a while and it’s something that we think will bring huge benefits to our group as we go into such an important tournament.”
There is no doubt that England Women are going to this tournament with the intention of bringing home the trophy. After their success in the 2015 Women’s World Cup in Canada where they claimed a bronze medal, they are full of confidence.
The Lionesses play two friendly matches against Italy (Friday 7 April) and Austria (Monday 10 April) before they head off to the Euros.
The Euro 2017 squad is as follows:
Goalkeepers: Karen Bardsley (Manchester City), Siobhan Chamberlain (Liverpool), Carly Telford (Notts County).
Defenders: Laura Bassett (Notts County), Lucy Bronze (Manchester City), Alex Greenwood (Liverpool), Steph Houghton (Manchester City), Jo Potter (Notts County), Alex Scott (Arsenal), Demi Stokes (Manchester City), Casey Stoney (Liverpool).
Midfielders: Millie Bright (Chelsea), Isobel Christiansen (Manchester City), Jade Moore (Notts County), Jordan Nobbs (Arsenal), Jill Scott (Manchester City), Fara Williams (Arsenal).
Millie Bright, Isobel Christiansen, Nikita Parris and Demi Stokes are the four players who will take part in their first major senior tournament. The other 19 players all featured in the historic 2015 Women’s World Cup. Mark Sampson and captain Steph Houghton are excited about the upcoming tournament especially since England Women go there as one of the favourites. Every member of the squad that has been chosen deserves their place but the likes of Chelsea’s Claire Rafferty and Eni Aluko as well as Houston Dash forward Rachel Daly will feel particularly disappointed about missing out.
There is a huge sense of togetherness among the current squad, something that they will be able to count on when they travel to the Netherlands for Euro 2017. With team spirit and confidence levels high, anything is possible.