The England Lionesses Women's Football Team & Their Rise to Success at the 2022 UEFA Women's Euro & 2023 World Cup Final
In 2022, the women did what the men could not manage, bringing home the victory at the 2022 UEFA Women’s Euro. Led to victory by Team Manager Sarina Wiegman, the England Women’s Team beat Germany 2 to 1. Comprised of 23 talented footballers, many iconic names formed the line-up of the England Senior team, including record England goal scorer Ellen White and 2011 FA International Player of the Year, Jill Scott MBE.
The Lionesses also made history when they reached the finals of the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup, having beaten Australia in their semi-finals. Once again, the Lionesses were led to victory by the iconic Sarina Wiegman, however were captained by Millie Bright on this occasion due to Leah Williamson's injury.
With many hailing these victories as a new start for women’s football in terms of inclusion in sport, the real question is, who are The Lionesses?
Who Are The Lionesses?
The Lionesses is the nickname given to the England Women’s Senior Squad, taken from the three lions that can be seen on the English football shirt. A blend of youth and experience, the Team Manager Sarina Wiegman carefully selected the Lionesses to have a perfect mix of energy and experience. With the average age of the team less than 27 for the first time since the 2013 Euros, Sarina took a gamble on younger players, but a gamble that proved worthwhile after they finished victorious.
Who is the Team Manager of the England Women’s Team?
Beginning the role in 2021, Sarina Wiegman is the Manager of the England Women’s National Team. A Dutch football manager, Sarina was selected by The Football Association in August of 2020 to sign a four-year contract for the role of England Women’s Manager. Taking over from Phil Neville, Sarina became the first non-British permanent Lionesses manager.
A former footballer, Sarina forged her success playing for the Netherlands, scoring 104 caps for the Netherland’s Women’s National Football Team. Having also played for Ter Leede, Sarina was a superb player nationally and internationally. Having claimed the titles of The Best FIFA Women’s Coach in 2017 and 2020 and the IFFHS World’s Best Woman National Coach in 2020, it is without question that Sarina is a fantastic influence on the England women’s football team.
Carefully selecting the team for the UEFA Women’s Euro, Sarina’s craft allowed her to guide the Lionesses to victory on home soil, becoming the fourth manager to retain the Euro’s title. Marking her name in the history books, Sarina helped the Lionesses to secure the first trophy since the 1996 FIFA World Cup.
At the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup, Sarina's wisdom once again saw the Lionesses reach the finals of a high profile game. Having led them to success in their group stages, Sarina's expertise helped them to win their semi-final match against Australia - putting them firmly into the final to play against Spain.
Listen to Sarina Wiegman speaking on her first squad selection in this clip:
Who Is On the Current England Women’s Senior Squad?
Substitutes - Alex Greenwood, Nikita Parris, Chloe Kelly, Ella Toone & Alessia Russo
Who Scored for the Lionesses at the 2022 Women’s UEFA Euro?
England claimed two goals to Germany’s one, claimed by midfielder Ella Toone and forward Chloe Kelly.
English professional footballer, Ella Toone has enjoyed a successful career playing in the Women’s Super League for Manchester United and England. Having represented the Under-17, Under-19 and Under-21 England teams, Ella made her senior international debut in February 2021. In 2022, she was selected by Sarina Wiegman to play in the UEFA Women’s Euro, playing in every match as a substitute and scoring twice, once in the final that saw England claim the win of the 2022 UEFA Women’s Euro. Named FA Women’s Super League Player of the Month in December 2021 and Manchester United Player of the Year 2021-2022, Ella is expected to enjoy further success on the football pitch.
Listen to Ella Toone speaking to BBC Sport in this clip:
Talented professional footballer, Chloe Kelly has forged her success playing as a forward for Manchester City and the England National team. Having previously played for Arsenal and Everton, Chloe has marked her prominence in the British football history books. Having represented England in the Under-17, Under-19 and Under-20 teams, Chloe was selected by Sarina Wiegman to join the EUFA Women’s Euro 2022 lineup. Coming off the bench as a substitute, Chloe took England to victory after she scored the final goal in the final of the 2022 UEFA Women’s Euro. A pivotal player in the team, Chloe helped England to secure their first trophy since the 1996 FIFA World Cup.
Listen to Chloe Kelly speaking on Good Morning Britain on inspiring the next generation:
Who Was the Captain of the England Senior Squad at the 2022 UEFA Women's Euros?
Sarina Wiegman carefully selected her Captain for the UEFA Women’s Euros, and after deliberation, Leah Williamson became the Captain of the England National Team.
English professional footballer, Leah Williamson has enjoyed a successful career playing in the Women’s Super League for Arsenal. A truly versatile player, Leah originally played as a midfielder, before switching to play in central defence. Joining the Arsenal Centre of Excellence at age nine, Leah made her senior team debut for Arsenal as a substitution for the famed Rachel Yankey. Having represented England in the Under 15, 17, 19, 20 and 23 teams, Leah claimed the title of England Women’s Youth Player of the Year in 2015. Playing as the Captain in the UEFA Women’s Euro, Leah made the most ball recoveries in the tournament and became the first captain to lead England to a European trophy.
Listen to Leah Williamson speaking on how she became England's Captain in this clip:
Who Was the Goalkeeper for England at the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022?
English professional footballer, Mary Earps has enjoyed success as a goalkeeper in the Women’s Super League for Manchester United. Also representing the England National Team, Mary has played for the Under-17, Under-19 and Under-23 levels. At the 2022 UEFA Women’s Euro, Sarina Wiegman named Mary as the starting goalkeeper, remaining as Sarina’s first choice in eight of the 11 matches England played. Achieving impressive statistics, Mary conceded twice and kept four clean sheets, ultimately named to the Team of the Tournament.
Listen to Mary Earps speaking to BBC Sport in this clip:
What Happened in the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 Final?
On the 31st of July 2022, the final of the UEFA Women’s Euros took place. Played at Wembley Stadium in London, the final battle was between England and Germany to determine the winner of the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022. With 87,192 people in attendance, a record for a women’s international fixture in Europe, England stormed to victory after extra time, claiming two goals to Germany’s one.
After a tense 90 minutes, the game went to extra time, and Manchester City pro Chloe Kelly claimed the final goal for England. Keira Walsh claimed the coveted Player of the Match title, and Sarina Wiegman helped the Lionesses to secure the first trophy since the 1996 FIFA World Cup.
What Impact Has the UEFA Women’s Euro Had on Women’s Football?
The victory at the 2022 UEFA Women’s Euro has had a significant impact on the future of women’s football. Considered a historic event, The Guardian cited that it will ‘change women’s football forever’, increasing the popularity of women’s football with its already record-breaking final attendance.
After she scored, Chloe Kelly removed her top to reveal a sports bra beneath her shirt, which she received a yellow card for. The move was praised as an act of empowering women, showing a topless woman as an image of joy rather than a sexual object. It is expected that women’s inclusion in sports will be improved after this significant moment in history, encouraging more young women to follow their dreams of becoming professional footballers.
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth released a statement addressing the England Women’s Senior Squad:
"The Championships and your performance in them have rightly won praise. However, your success goes far beyond the trophy you have so deservedly earned. You have all set an example that will be an inspiration for girls and women today and for future generations. It is my hope that you will be as proud of the impact you have had on your sport as you are of the result today." - HRH Queen Elizabeth II
2023 FIFA Women's World Cup
Which Players Were in the England Line-Up for the Final of the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup?
Having beaten Australia in the semi-final, Sarina Wiegman selected the following players to start in the final of the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup:
Who was the Captain of the Lionesses at the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup?
Due to a knee injury she sustained playing for Arsenal, Leah Williamson was ruled out of the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup - which forced Sarina to choose another player to replace Leah as Captain of the Lionesses. After careful deliberation, Sarina selected Millie Bright to become the Captain of the Lionesses.
Who Won the Golden Glove Award at the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup?
Mary Earps and her magnificent skills as a goalkeeper earned her the honour of the Golden Glove at the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup. Mary has proved herself to be a decadent player for England, having saved Jennifer Hermoso's penalty during the final of the 2023 World Cup against Spain, continually performing at an exceptional standard for her team. She has also claimed awards such as The Best FIFA Women's Goalkeeper 2022, Women's Super League Golden Glove 2022-23 and Freedom of the City of London.
What Happened in the Final of the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup?
Having reached the final, England took to the pitch to play against Spain. For the first half of the game, Spain was very dominant, with Lauren Hemp creating many of England's chances of success in this half. After Mary Earps saved Jennifer Hermoso's penalty with just 20 minutes left to play, England were unfortunately able to score an equalising point, which allowed Spain to win 1-0.
England had a collection of shots on goal, with players Lauren Hemp and Lauren James coming close to scoring goals.
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Mark has worked closely with some of the world’s most prestigious brands, including F1, Deloitte, American Express, McDonald's, HSBC and Samsung since joining us in 2017. With a degree in Business Management and Sports Science from the University of ... Read more
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