Smith and Flaherty hope to see  England included in Lionesses squad | The Sun

Smith and Flaherty hope to see England included in Lionesses squad | The Sun

June 2, 2023

KELLY SMITH and Gilly Flaherty hope Bethany England will make Sarina Wiegman’s World Cup squad today. 

The striker, 29, has been in lethal form since her British record-breaking January transfer to Tottenham from Chelsea. 

She became their all-time leading scorer in the top tier, netting 12 goals in 12 WSL appearances following her move for a reported fee of £250,000. 

Her efforts helped the team win their battle to avoid relegation from the WSL with Tottenham finishing ninth in the table this season.

England was not included Wiegman’s last squad before her team’s Women’s Finalissima win against Brazil and 2-0 friendly loss to Australia in April.

Lionesses legend Smith, 44, who made 117 senior international appearances during her playing career,  believes a recall is deserved. 

She said: "I expect Bethany England to be in there. I think she’s a player that needs to be in that set up. 

Retired WSL ace Gilly Flaherty, 31, agreed, adding: "Beth deserves a call-up. 

"She helped keep Tottenham up (in the WSL) with so many important goals. 

"I would love to see her on that plane and I hope to see England do as well as they possibly can (at the tournament).” 

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At 2:00 pm today England boss Wiegman will pick her 23-strong squad ahead of the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand which starts on July 20th. 

The announcement will be made at the home of grassroots football club Boldmere St. Michaels FC in Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham.

Smith also thinks Rachel Daly can help fill the void left up front, with Fran Kirby out with a knee injury and Beth Mead a big doubt. 

This month the Arsenal forward told Sky Sports she is doing all she can to be fit but acknowledged the World Cup may be too soon for her return

Villa striker, Daly, 31, finished this season as the WSL’s top scorer — bagging 22 goals in 22 games.

This saw the Lioness, who has played for England as a full-back, equal the record set by Arsenal ace Vivianne Miedema in the 2018-19 

Smith, who is now a Barclays WSL ambassador, added: "I want to see Rachel as a striker, not as a left-back, given her performances and goal ratio this season. 

"I also want to see Millie Bright in there for her leadership, grit and determination. Hopefully England will have a good showing."

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