Saturday, July 13, 2024

Preview: England Women vs. Ireland Women – prediction, team news, lineups

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Sports Mole previews Friday’s Women’s European Championship clash between England Women and Ireland Women, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

England Women will resume their Women’s Euro 2025 qualifying campaign when they welcome Ireland Women to Carrow Road on Friday.

Having picked seven points, the Lionness are sitting in third place and outside the top two on goal difference, while the Girls in Green are propping up the table after losing each of their four matches.

Match preview

© Reuters

With two games to play in Group 3, England are at risk of missing out on a top-two finish and automatic qualification, with the Lionesses sitting below Sweden on goal difference and two points adrift of leaders France.

Sarina Wiegman‘s side began their qualifying campaign with a draw against Sweden and a 2-0 win over Ireland, before they gave up a narrow lead to lose 2-1 at home to France at the end of May.

The European champions ultimately avenged that defeat just four days later as they edged out France to record a narrow 2-1 victory thanks to goals from Georgia Stanway and Alessia Russo.

As a result of that victory, England have now eight of their 12 matches (D1, L3) since losing to Spain in the 2023 World Cup final last summer.

The Lionesses will be hoping to experience another successful outing on Friday, as they bid to claim their first home win of their qualifying campaign before they travel to Goteborg for Tuesday’s tricky clash with Sweden.

Republic of Ireland Women's Katie McCabe celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates on July 26, 2023© Reuters

Ireland are looking to qualify for their second major tournament after appearing at last year’s World Cup in Australia.

However, the Girls in Green already know they will have to go through the playoffs if they are to punch their ticket to next summer’s tournament in Switzerland.

As the lowest-ranked team in the group, Ireland have found it tough to trouble the three other nations in the group, having lost all four of their qualifiers without troubling the scorers.

They did look well set to take a point off Sweden in last month’s away fixture, but Magdalena Eriksson‘s 84th-minute winner ensured Eileen Gleeson’s side returned home empty-handed.

Ireland are now winless in six matches, and they will have their work cut out to claim their first win of 2024 in either of their next two games against England and France.

England Women Women’s European Championship form:

England Women form (all competitions):

Ireland Women Women’s European Championship form:

Ireland Women form (all competitions):

Team News

England's Alessia Russo celebrates scoring their first goal on April 5, 2024© Reuters

England are unable to call upon Lauren James, Lotte Wubben-Moy and Kayla Rendell after the trio pulled out of the squad due to injury.

Goalkeeper Mary Earps and defender Niamh Charles are unavailable for selection, but have travelled with the group to continue their rehabilitation.

Wiegman may take the opportunity to select the same lineup that started last month’s 2-1 victory against France, which would see Alessia Russo feature in a front three alongside Beth Mead and Lauren Hemp.

As for the visitors, they are unable to call upon the injured quintet of Chloe Mustaki, Heather Payne, Tara O’Hanlon, Jamie Finn and Kyra Carusa.

With England set to dominate possession, Ireland could line up with a back five of Anna Patten, Caitlin Hayes, Louise Quinn, Aoife Mannion and Katie McCabe.

Meanwhile, Standard Liege forward Amber Barrett could be given the chance to lead the line and make her second start of the qualifying campaign.

England Women possible starting lineup:
Hampton; Bronze, Bright, Williamson, Carter; Toone, Walsh, Stanway; Mead, Hemp, Russo

Ireland Women possible starting lineup:
Brosnan; Patten, Hayes, Quinn, Mannion, McCabe; Agg, O’Sullivan, Connolly, Kiernan; Barrett

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We say: England Women 3-0 Ireland Women

England have taken just one point from their previous two home qualifying games, but we believe they have enough quality throughout the squad to claim a relatively comfortable victory against an Ireland side who could be low on confidence after losing all four of their qualifiers.

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