England and Scotland will go head-to-head in their Women’s World Cup opener on June 9.
Here, Press Association Sport looks at five players from across the two squads who could catch the eye at the tournament in France.
It will be interesting to see how Parris fares this summer at her first senior World Cup in the country set to become her home. She scored 19 Women’s Super League goals in 2018-19, is the division’s all-time top-scorer and England’s highest scorer in qualifying – and in May the forward, having left Manchester City, confirmed she was joining powerhouses Lyon. With the semis and final taking place at the Groupama Stadium where the six-time Women’s Champions League winners play some of their matches, things are set up intriguingly for the FWA Women’s Footballer of the Year.
The right-back has been a Lyon player for the past two seasons – winning five trophies – and in April she admitted England lifting the World Cup at the Groupama Stadium was something she had been visualising daily. Bronze, who scored winners in the last 16 and quarter-finals during the Lionesses’ Canada 2015 campaign, is well-established as a force at international level. What is new is the Ballon d’Or nominee playing for her country in midfield some of the time, which boss Phil Neville has said will continue this summer. In March he described Bronze as “the best player in the world”.
The PFA Women’s Young Player of the Year, 20-year-old Stanway is looking to make a mark this summer having already demonstrated her exciting talent at a World Cup in France as she finished joint top-scorer – with six goals – in last year’s under-20s tournament. As well as netting on her senior England debut in November, Stanway’s excellent season saw her register 11 times for Manchester City in the WSL and score their second at Wembley in the 3-0 FA Cup final win over West Ham.
Scotland midfielder Little has long been a star but played no part for them at Euro 2017 after being ruled out by a knee injury. Little heads into what is her country’s debut Women’s World Cup finals having scored three times in qualifying and the winning goal against Brazil in April – her 53rd goal for the team. The Arsenal player, who made a return to action in January after suffering a fractured fibula in October, helped her club win the 2018-19 WSL title.
The 20-year-old, scorer of one of Scotland’s two goals at Euro 2017, was nominated for both the PFA Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year awards in April. Cuthbert scored eight WSL goals for Chelsea during the season and four times in their Champions League campaign, including in the quarter-finals against Paris St Germain and semis against Lyon. She fired in a superb effort from 30 yards out as the Scots beat Jamaica 3-2 at Hampden Park in their final pre-World Cup friendly.
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