England squad: Injured forward Beth Mead unlikely to make World Cup, says Sarina Wiegman

Injured forward Beth Mead is unlikely to be named in England’s World Cup squad, manager Sarina Wiegman has said.

The World Cup begins on 20 July, with England’s first group game against Haiti two days later.

“It’s being realistic, and she was very realistic,” said Wiegman, who named her final pre-World Cup squad on Tuesday.

“What we said now is, she’s not in our plans now, just to really take the time to get back well,” she added.

“If a miracle happens and she goes [through recovery] so fast, we will reconsider it, but at this moment I don’t expect that.”

The Lionesses host South American champions Brazil at a sold-out Wembley on Thursday, 6 April, before playing Australia at Brentford’s Gtech Community Stadium on Tuesday, 11 April.

The friendlies are scheduled to be England’s last fixtures before the start of this summer’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

Speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live, Wiegman added: “She’s done really well in her rehabilitation. But if you look at the timescale you normally have with an injury like this she would not make the World Cup.

“We had that discussion. We’re not going to push or take risks that will cause this injury again. Of course she wants to play, but she knows.”

‘The right moment’ for Hampton return

England boss Wiegman said Aston Villa goalkeeper Hannah Hampton had “sorted out” personal issues to earn a recall to the squad for the Brazil and Australia games.

Hampton, absent since England won Euro 2022 after being dropped reportedly because of poor attitude, returns to the latest 25-player squad.

“She needed to sort out some personal issues. She has done that, shown great performances and consistency at her club. I thought this was the moment to bring her in,” said Wiegman.

Hannah Hampton

The 22-year-old’s Villa team-mate Jordan Nobbs has retained her spot after replacing injured Chelsea midfielder Fran Kirby in the Arnold Clark Cup squad.

Tottenham forward Beth England misses out despite being in superb form, scoring five goals in her past six Women’s Super League appearances.

“We chose to select less centre-forwards,” added Wiegman, who has named Villa’s Rachel Daly – a regular full-back for England – as an attacking option.

“The competition in that position is so high so I just chose these two and kept it as that.”

Other players not included are Everton’s Emily Ramsey, Arsenal’s Lotte Wubben-Moy, Manchester United’s Katie Zelem and Houston Dash’s Ebony Salmon.

West Ham defender Lucy Parker is named and in line to win her first cap for England, having been called up in October but withdrawing through injury.

“It starts with quality and performance. You also want some experience too. [Parker] has played a few different positions in the last few games but she did well,” said Wiegman.

“We see things in her we really like. We want to see that in our environment.”

Chelsea defender Millie Bright is included despite sustaining a knee injury in the first leg of the Champions League quarter-final against Lyon on Wednesday.

Chelsea’s Kirby has also struggled with injuries this season and could face a battle to be fit for the World Cup.

“I am concerned. I want to keep this opportunity open. Hopefully she gets fit, gets on the pitch again and gets playing,” added Wiegman.

“You need to show form and fitness. We have less time now [than the home Euros]. It’s a little concern, but also we just need to see how she progresses.”

England squad

Goalkeepers: Mary Earps (Manchester United), Hannah Hampton (Aston Villa), Sandy MacIver (Manchester City), Ellie Roebuck (Manchester City)

Defenders: Millie Bright (Chelsea), Lucy Bronze (Barcelona), Jess Carter (Chelsea), Niamh Charles (Chelsea), Alex Greenwood (Manchester City), Maya le Tissier (Manchester United), Esme Morgan (Manchester City), Lucy Parker (West Ham), Leah Williamson (Arsenal)

Midfielders: Laura Coombs (Manchester City), Jordan Nobbs (Aston Villa), Georgia Stanway (Bayern Munich), Ella Toone (Manchester United), Keira Walsh (Barcelona)

Forwards: Rachel Daly (Aston Villa), Lauren Hemp (Manchester City), Lauren James (Chelsea), Chloe Kelly (Manchester City), Jess Park (Everton), Alessia Russo (Manchester United), Katie Robinson (Brighton)

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