She Believes Cup: England v USA – qui sont les nouveaux visages des Lionnes?mars 4, 2020
|SheBelieves Cup 2020|
|Dates: 5-11 March Venues: Exploria Stadium (Orlando), Red Bull Arena (New Jersey), Toyota Stadium (Frisco, Texas)|
|Coverage: TV coverage of every England game on BBC Two/BBC Four and BBC iPlayer. Live text coverage on the BBC website.|
Phil Neville has included three uncapped players in the England Women’s squad for the SheBelieves Cup, but who are the young Lionesses and will they get much game time?
West Ham defender Grace Fisk, North Carolina Tar Heels forward Alessia Russo and Everton goalkeeper Sandy MacIver could make their debuts in the USA.
And in-form youngsters Chloe Kelly and Lauren Hemp, with just four caps between them, will look to establish themselves in boss Neville’s long-term plans.
« Until you give young people an opportunity, you never know if they can step up. That’s what we’re going to do at the SheBelieves Cup, » said Neville.
The Lionesses open their campaign against the USA on Thursday in a game you can watch on BBC Two – and the whole tournament can be watched across the BBC.
So who are the new faces? Why have they been included? And should they be given an opportunity?
How to watch England in the SheBelieves Cup
- Thursday, 5 March – USA v England (BBC Two & BBC iPlayer, 23:45 GMT)
- Sunday, 8 March – Japan v England (BBC Four & BBC iPlayer, 19:00 GMT)
- Wednesday, 11 March – England v Spain (BBC Four & BBC iPlayer, 21:00 GMT)
Club: Everton Caps: 1
Everton striker Kelly’s inclusion is no surprise given her form in the Women’s Super League this season.
The 22-year-old, who made her only England appearance in a friendly win over Austria in November 2018, is her club’s top scorer this season with nine goals in 12 appearances.
Only Arsenal striker Vivianne Miedema and fellow England international Bethany England have contributed to more goals for their clubs in the WSL in 2019-20.
Kelly told BBC Sport in December she hoped « to catch the eye of Neville » and she impressed the boss enough to be invited to train with the squad ahead of recent friendlies.
« We have seen a rapid rise in her development, » said Neville. « She is a multifunctional player – she plays on the left, on the right and as a centre-forward.
« I love everything about the kid. She has the determination to succeed at the top and I’m excited by what she can bring to this team. »
Club: Manchester City Caps: 3
Hemp, 19, has scored five goals in her past 10 appearances for Manchester City, continuing the form she showed in a breakthrough year in 2019.
She scored a late equaliser in the 3-3 draw with title rivals Chelsea last month and came on as a substitute to score in May’s FA Cup final.
Hemp’s England debut came in the 1-0 victory over Portugal in October and she was part of the side watched by 77,768 at Wembley a month later.
Her impressive form for club and country could even boost her chances of a call-up for Team GB at the Olympics in July and she will hope to use the SheBelieves Cup to showcase her rising pedigree.
« She seems to turn up and play with no fear, stepping up and showing what she’s about. She gets an opportunity and takes it with both hands, » former Leeds and Doncaster Belles star Sue Smith told BBC Sport in December.
Club: West Ham Caps: 0
Fisk, 22, was part of the England Under-20s squad who won bronze at the World Cup in 2018.
West Ham defender Fisk captained that team and has represented England at every age group, making 30 appearances.
She moved from the University of South Carolina to West Ham in January and Neville has praised her bravery in recent performances when her side have struggled in the WSL.
« She has composure, confidence, courage – that courage, when your team is doing badly, you can see the character, » said Neville.
Club: North Carolina Tar Heels Caps: 0
Another member of the England Under-20s squad 18 months ago, Russo has also spent time in America, having represented the University of North Carolina for the past two years following spells at Chelsea and Brighton.
The 21-year-old was originally selected as a training player but was called up to the squad when Lyon defender Lucy Bronze was forced to withdraw with a calf injury.
Given the competition for places in attack, Russo’s chances may be limited but Neville stressed the inclusion of the young players was « deserved » and they were going to « hunt in packs together » to create opportunities.
Club: Everton Caps: 0
With Neville choosing to leave out Manchester United keeper Mary Earps, who started the defeat by Germany at Wembley in November, the door was open for Everton’s 21-year-old MacIver.
Having spent the past three seasons with Clemson Tigers in the United States, she was called into the England squad for last summer’s friendly internationals against Belgium and Norway but is yet to earn a cap.
« Ultimately it was a choice between [Chelsea goalkeeper] Carly Telford and Mary Earps because I was never going to take a keeper of that experience, just to play them as a third choice and not get them on the pitch, » said Neville, when asked about his decision.
MacIver faces stiff competition at the SheBelieves Cup. Telford has 25 caps for England, while Manchester City’s Ellie Roebuck, 20, is seeking a fifth appearance since making her debut in November 2018.