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Beth Mead returns to England squad for Nations League fixtures

Beth Mead returns to England squad for Nations League fixtures
© Reuters
Arsenal attacker Beth Mead earns her first England call-up since November 2022 after recovering from her devastating ACL injury.

Arsenal Women forward Beth Mead has earned her first England Women call-up since November 2022 for the Lionesses final two Nations League group-stage fixtures in December.

The Euro 2022 Golden Boot winner has not been seen donning an England jersey since suffering her devastating ACL injury this time year, missing the 2023 Women's World Cup as a result.

Mead has slowly been making strides in her recovery, though, and the 28-year-old made a huge impact on her comeback appearance last month, coming off the bench to set up a last-gasp Alessia Russo strike in a 2-1 win over Aston Villa.

Mead subsequently made her first competitive start of the season at the weekend, as the Gunners cruised past Brighton & Hove Albion 3-0 in the Women's Super League on Sunday, which came exactly 12 months to the day that she sustained her injury against Manchester United.

The attacker had not been deemed ready for international action by Sarina Wiegman for September or October's fixtures, but she will represent her country again next month, where England will round off their inaugural Nations League campaign against the Netherlands and Scotland.

Beth Mead celebrates scoring for England Women on July 11, 2022© Reuters

Speaking about Mead's recall in a press conference after naming her squad, Wiegman said: "That was a very nice phone call, she was very happy.

"We've had phone calls all the time, since September, and October too, because she was training and getting some minutes, but I wanted to see more. Her health now is really good, she can just go. We hope she keeps improving, but she showed enough for me to bring her in.

"She is a character who brings positive energy on and off pitch, her experience, the way she plays, she is different to other players on the wing. We expect on and off pitch it gives us extra energy."

With Mead back in the ranks, Manchester City striker Jess Park has dropped out of the squad, while there is also no space for Brighton's Katie Robinson, who was last called up in September.

Park is one of three players called up for October's fixtures to have been omitted this time around, as Man City goalkeeper Ellie Roebuck and Aston Villa defender Lucy Parker - who withdrew injured from the most recent set of matches - are also out of contention.

England Women coach Sarina Wiegman on October 27, 2023© Reuters

Roebuck's absence opens the door for her 19-year-old Citizens colleague Khiara Keating to hold her place in the squad, though, while fellow uncapped player Grace Clinton of Tottenham Hotspur is also included again.

"We know we'll need to win our last two games of 2023 and we'll give everything we have for that outcome. This group have shown resilience and strength of character time and time again and I have absolutely no doubts we'll be ready to go when the whistle blows for both fixtures," Wiegman told

"We always embrace the opportunity to play at Wembley, it's been home to some of our biggest and happiest occasions. We'll need the crowd to play their part and continue the incredible backing they've shown for the team.

"They've always been there when we need them and we'll need them once again. An away fixture against Scotland is also an occasion we'll all look forward to, but we'll take it one game at a time."

England sit third in League A Group 1 of the Women's Nations League with six points from their opening four fixtures, three worse off than group leaders Netherlands, who visit Wembley on December 1.

The Lionesses then have three full days to recuperate before closing their Nations League campaign away to basement side Scotland at Hampden Park on December 5.


Goalkeepers: Mary Earps (Manchester United), Hannah Hampton (Chelsea), Khiara Keating (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), Lotte Wubben-Moy (Arsenal)

Midfielders: Grace Clinton (Tottenham Hotspur, loan from Manchester United), Fran Kirby (Chelsea), Georgia Stanway (Bayern Munich), Ella Toone (Manchester United), Keira Walsh (Barcelona), Katie Zelem (Manchester United)

Forwards: Rachel Daly (Aston Villa), Lauren Hemp (Manchester City), Lauren James (Chelsea), Chloe Kelly (Manchester City), Beth Mead (Arsenal) Alessia Russo (Arsenal)

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Beth Mead celebrates scoring for England Women on July 11, 2022
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