This week, we’ve been telling you about the Messi Training System, which is endorsed by Lionel Messi. And what better time to brush up on footy skills than the summer holidays? Not only is this when children have time to fill, but practice will also keep fans occupied between seasons.
But mainstream football isn’t completely shutting down for summer… There’s the excitement of the summer transfer window. Plus, there are tournaments to keep us entertained through July/August.
What surprises will the summer transfer window throw at us this year?
The transfer window is now open for the Premier League and English Football League, with other leagues soon to follow. Fans will be eagerly awaiting updates on whether their icons will be moving clubs.
- Will Argentinian captain Lionel Messi stay at PSG, return to Barcelona, or move to a Saudi club?
- Is De Gea going to end his career at Old Trafford and move from Man United?
- Has Wrexham’s owner Ryan Reynolds persuaded Gareth Bale to return from retirement for the club?
All these questions and more will be answered ahead of the 1 September.
A football tournament to keep us entertained this summer…
Whilst we stay tuned for transfer window news and wait for the new season to kick off, there are a couple of big football tournaments to enjoy, including the Champions League, which kicks off on 27 June, and the FIFA Women’s World Cup. Here’s a rundown on what we know so far about the latter:
- The Women’s World Cup kicks off on Thursday 20th July 2023.
- This year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup will be held in Australia and New Zealand.
- England are in Group D, which consists of England, Haiti, Denmark and China.
- England’s first match will be held in Brisbane, on Saturday 22nd July, against Haiti.
- The team will be managed by Sarina Wiegman, who led the Lionesses to victory in the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 Tournament.
- Before this April’s friendly against Australia, England had a 30-match unbeaten run.
Key Information Affecting the Squad
- Since the Women’s Euros in 2022, England Women’s all-time leading scorer Ellen White has retired, as too has Jill Scott (who was crowned Queen of the Jungle last year).
- Captain Leah Williamson has been ruled out of the tournament, after rupturing her ACL.
- Wiegman has also said it would be a miracle if Beth Mead – England’s top scorer at the Euros – will be fit to play; she suffered an ACL injury in November.
- So, of the 23 players Wiegman can take, we can expect some changes.
Who are we likely to see in England Women’s Squad?
- Mary Earps (Club: Manchester United)
- Received goalkeeper of the year at the 2022 Fifa Best Awards.
- The 29-year-old was a standout performer at the Euros 2022.
- Ellie Roebuck (Club: Manchester City)
- Likely to be a strong number-two goalie for England.
- Hannah Hampton (Club: Aston Villa)
- After overcoming “personal issues”, the keeper has been recalled to the squad by Wiegman.
- Lucy Bronze (Club: Barcelona)
- This would be Bronze’s third appearance at the World Cup
- The right back has 102 caps and will be one of the most experienced players on the team.
- Alex Greenwood (Club: Manchester City)
- Though she wasn’t a starter in the Euros, she seems to have reclaimed her spot.
- She plays left back as well as centre-back. With Williamson injured, she may play the latter.
- Millie Bright (Club: Chelsea)
- England’s vice-captain and centre back.
- She is currently injured and was unable to play in April’s matches.
- Lotte Wubben-Moy (Club: Arsenal)
- The defender is usually a key figure in England’s squad; though wasn’t in Wiegman’s first selection for the Brazil/Australia friendlies. She later replaced the injured Millie Bright.
- Recognised for her relentless campaigning for equal access to sport for girls in school.
- Jess Carter (Club: Chelsea)
- Carter is respected for her consistency and ability to play across the back four.
- Niamh Charles (Club: Chelsea)
- A versatile defender who is a natural winger and capable of playing in many positions.
- Esme Morgan (Club: Manchester City)
- Another versatile defender who plays in the centre, at right-back, or even as a defensive midfielder.
- Manchester City manager Gareth Taylor tipped her as the future England captain.
- Maya Le Tissier (Club: Manchester United)
- A former England captain at Under 23 level.
- The 20-year-old typically plays centre back, but she is also comfortable at full back.
- Keira Walsh (Club: Barcelona)
- The 26-year-old was named player of the match in the Euros final
- Last August, Barcelona bought her from Man City for a world record fee of around £400k
- Georgia Stanway (Club: Bayern Munich)
- The midfielder started every game in the Euros 2022
- Ella Toone (Club: Manchester United)
- Played the role of “super-sub” during the Euros, scoring a goal in the final.
- The midfielder seems to have earned her place in the starting line-up for the World Cup.
- Fran Kirby (Club: Chelsea)
- She started every game at the Euros but suffered a knee injury; she hasn’t played for Chelsea since February.
- Jordan Nobbs (Club: Aston Villa)
- Nobbs missed the Euros due to injury and her position isn’t secure in the World Cup squad; she wasn’t brought on against Brazil or Australia.
- Laura Coombs (Club: Manchester City)
- The midfielder was selected by Wiegman for the Arnold Clark Cup – the first England call-up in more than two years. However, she didn’t play against Brazil or Australia in the friendlies.
- Chloe Kelly (Club: Manchester City)
- England’s winning goal scorer in the Euros ‘22 final.
- She recently returned from an ACL injury but has had a good season with Man City.
- Praised for an outstanding performed on the left-wing during the Arnold Clark Cup.
- Alessia Russo (Club: Manchester United)
- In 21 appearances, she’s scored 11 goals for England.
- Lauren Hemp (Club: Manchester City)
- Hemp was hyped as the one to watch in the Euros but since then Kelly and James have also gained attention. Nonetheless, her position in the team seems safe.
- Lauren James (Club: Chelsea)
- A box-to-box midfielder, who wasn’t at the Euros, but is likely to make the World Cup squad.
- She won NXGN player of the tournament at the Arnold Clark Cup, this February.
- Katie Robinson (Club: Brighton & Hove Albion)
- Robinson stepped up from Under 23 level to the Senior team, in November.
- Played in the Arnold Clark Cup on the right wing, but if Beth Mead is fit, she is unlikely to make the Squad.
- Rachel Daly (Club: Aston Villa)
- Daly generally plays for England as a left-back defender but hopes to secure an attacking position in the World Cup.
- In February’s Arnold Clark Cup match against Italy Daly scored both of England’s goals.
Other names we could see in the squad:
Goalkeeper: SandyMacIver | Defenders: Lucy Parker; Steph Houghton; Gabby George; Demi Stokes; Ashleigh Neville; Millie Turner | Midfielders: Katie Zelem; Jess Park; Lucy Staniforth | Forwards: Beth England; Nikita Parris; Ebony Salmon; Leah Galton
Other notable football dates for the summer diary
- UEFA Nations League Finals – 14/18 June
- UEFA EURO 2024 Qualifiers – 16/17 & 19/20 June
- UEFA Champions League Qualifying Phase Begins – 27 June
- UEFA Europa Conference League Qualifying Phase Begin – 13 July
- UEFA Europa League Qualifying Phase Begins – 10 August
- Premier League 23/24 Campaign Begins – 12th August