Preview: England vs Northern Ireland

The Lionesses will take on Northern Ireland and Latvia respectively within the three-week international break. Sarina Wiegman has nominated a similar cohort to the initial choices made for her first fixtures at the helm in September.

Captain Steph Houghton and defender Esme Morgan, who were previously selected, now miss out due to injury. Manchester City players Lucy Bronze and Chloe Kelly remain side-lined with longer term recoveries.

Goalkeeper Carly Telford makes way for youngster Hannah Hampton who has impressed with new club Birmingham City thus far. Manchester United’s Mary Earps looks to take the number one spot for this camp with Manchester City’s Ellie Roebuck still not fit enough to play. Everton’s Sandy MacIver takes the third goalkeeper position and will be hoping to earn her second senior cap for her country.

Midfielder, and gifted playmaker, Keira Walsh returns after recovering from a calf injury, yet Arsenal’s Jordan Nobbs is still yet to make the cut for Wiegman’s squad. Despite an illustrious return to the domestic league, there remains a sizeable hole in the midfield that may only be filled with Nobbs’ innovative movement and sharp ability to create.

Arsenal’s Leah Williamson, who was named as captain in Houghton’s absence, remains listed as a midfielder offering another defensive option in the middle third whilst Walsh regains minutes. Wiegman is yet to name her captain for this period, however it is likely Williamson will wear the armband once again following her performances in leading the Lionesses to comfortable victories in their previous two matches.

Racing Louiseville’s Ebony Salmon is replaced by Manchester United’s Alessia Russo, who has enjoyed finding her feet in the early part of the season with the Red Devils. Salmon has since been named as part of the Lionesses Under-23’s squad. Manchester City centre-forward and Ballon D’or nominee Ellen White looks to break the record for the number of goals scored for the Lionesses. White has scored 43 international goals; record holder Kelly Smith has scored 46.

The Lionesses will return to Wembley Stadium to face Northern Ireland on Saturday 23rd October at 5:15pm (BST). Coverage will begin on ITV1 at 4:30pm. 

They will then travel to Latvia to take on the home nation at Daugava Stadium on Tuesday 26th October. Coverage will be available on ITV.

Full Squad:

GK: Mary Earps (Manchester United), Sandy MacIver (Everton), Hannah Hampton (Birmingham City)

DF: Millie Bright (Chelsea), Lotte Wubben-Moy (Arsenal), Alex Greenwood (Manchester City), Demi Stokes (Manchester City), Jess Carter (Chelsea), Niamh Charles (Chelsea), Rachel Daly (Houston Dash)

MF: Leah Williamson (Arsenal), Keira Walsh (Manchester City), Jill Scott (Manchester City), Lucy Staniforth (Manchester United), Georgia Stanway (Manchester City), Katie Zelem (Manchester United)

FW: Bethany England (Chelsea), Lauren Hemp (Manchester City), Beth Mead (Arsenal), Ella Toone (Manchester United), Ellen White (Manchester City), Alessia Russo (Manchester United), Nikita Parris (Arsenal)

Photo: @Lionesses