International news is very much the order for the day as England's men prepare to face the Netherlands, whilst Lionesses boss Mark Sampson has named his squad for their next two games.
Injury forces Sampson's hand
Promising young midfielder Isobel Christiansen misses out through injury, as do new Arsenal favourite, Jodie Taylor, and Chelsea stalwart Claire Rafferty.
Notts County fan-favourite, Amy Turner returns to the squad, Turner giving Sampson another option in defence, the Sheffield-native having recently turned full-time pro can play anywhere across the back line. Higher up the pitch Josanne Potter and Ellen White, who boast nearly 80 caps between them, return to the England set-up, both having been left out for the recent SheBelieves Cup.
No place for Beth Mead
The glaring omission that already has fans questioning the England boss is current U23, Bethany Mead. At just 20, the Sunderland no.9 has proved she’s capable of taking on and besting some of the best defences in WSL1 and fans are wondering what more she has to do to be capped. As it stands, Mead is still available for selection for Marieanne Spacey’s U23 squad, as Spacey is assistant coach to the senior squad she will be able to monitor Mead’s ability at the international level and no-doubt keep Sampson informed.
The 23 selected will train together before first taking on Belgium at the New York Stadium in Rotherham on the Friday 8 April (7.55pm kick-off), tickets are still available through the FA website. Then the Lionesses will once again face Bosnia and Herzegovina, a team who’s dogged determination saw England restricted the first time these two met last year in qualifying, England only able to register a hard-fought and rain-soaked 1-0 win. The latter game taking place in Zenica at the NFSBiH Training Centre on Tuesday 12 April (3pm BST kick-off).
Qualifying for the Women’s 2017 European Championships will resume first in June against Serbia both home and way then in September at home to Estonia then away to Belgium.
Goalkeepers: Karen Bardsley (Manchester City), Siobhan Chamberlain (Liverpool), Carly Telford (Notts County).
Defenders: Lara Bassett (Notts County), Lucy Bronze (Manchester City), Gilly Flaherty (Chelsea), Alex Greenwood (Liverpool), Steph Houghton (Manchester City), Alex Scott (Arsenal), Casey Stoney (Arsenal), Demi Stokes (Manchester City), Amy Turner (Notts County).
Midfielders: Katie Chapman (Chelsea), Jordan Nobbs (Arsenal), Josanne Potter (Birmingham City), Jill Scott (Manchester City), Fara Williams (Arsenal).
Attackers: Eniola Aluko (Chelsea), Karen Carney (Chelsea), Gemma Davison (Chelsea), Toni Duggan (Manchester City), Fran Kirby (Chelsea), Ellen White (Notts County).