Following their Women’s World Cup opener against Haiti, the European champions face the toughest opponents in their group – a Denmark side who sit just nine places below England in the FIFA Women’s Rankings.
The last meeting between the two nations was in 2019, where goals from Nikita Parris and Jill Scott were enough to seal a 2-0 win.
England’s Rachel Daly admitted she was frustrated at not starting in England’s World Cup opener against Haiti and insisted she would continue to push to replace Alessia Russo as first-choice striker.
Read more of Daly’s comments HERE.
What and when?
England will face Denmark in their second Women’s World Cup match on July 28 at 9.30am (BST).
Where is the game played?
The game is played at Sydney Football Stadium.
How to watch
The match will be broadcast by the BBC.
Who are Denmark?
Denmark are currently ranked 13th in the world and recently finished second in the Tournoi de France earlier this year.
What does Denmark say?
Speaking to Fifa ahead of the tournament, Danish manager Lars Sondergaard called England “one of the greatest nations”, but later added that the growing investment in women’s football across Europe is making it difficult to pick a winner.
He said: “This development is why you can’t say one team is the overwhelming favourite.”
What does England say?
Most people expected Daly to start ahead of Russo, given that she was given the number 9 shirt by manager Sarina Wiegman and also started the team’s final friendly against Portugal earlier this month.
But it was Arsenal’s new signing who was chosen for the opener with Haiti, with Daly coming off the bench in the second half and Chelsea’s Beth England an unused substitute.
Russo worked hard and led the line well in Brisbane, but she also missed opportunities and after going three games without a goal, in open play, there is an argument to be made that Daly, the WSL’s top scorer last season, deserves an opportunity.
Russo still hasn’t done enough to prove she can definitely fill the boots of Ellen White, who started ahead of her at the Euros last summer but retired last year. The 24-year-old emerged as one of the stars of this tournament, but was mainly used as an impact player coming off the bench against tired defences.
When asked if she was frustrated, Daly replied, “I think anyone would be. No one is happy to sit on the bench.
“If you are, then you’re in the wrong place, not in the right career. It’s a tough place for Sarina to pick the team. I respect her decisions and will support Alessia all the way and of course I know Beth will do the same.”
This response alluded to the fact that Russo was told she would be the first choice and that Wiegman tends to stay with the same team, rather than tinkering with rosters and formations, during a tournament.
But Daly is not ready to meekly accept a supporting role and Wiegman will come under pressure to make changes in Denmark given the uninspiring display against Haiti.
“I think that’s the beauty of having a competitive team [that there is not a first choice striker]added Daly, who scored 22 goals in an Aston Villa side that finished outside the WSL top four last season.
“I think everyone is looking for a job. It’s a headache that Sarina must have in several positions. I wouldn’t like to be in his place and make such important decisions before the tournaments. But he is a fantastic manager, we respect all his decisions. It proved tonight that it works, so we’re happy.
“I mean you could put it [ the lack of goals at the moment] a number of things, but I think we’re a fairly new team, a relatively new team.
“We lost a lot of players to injuries, to retirements. We’re still building, but I don’t think that’s a worry and concern right now. Hopefully more will come.
“Obviously we’re coming off a bit of free time after the season, but no, I wouldn’t say that. [we are rusty]. I think Haiti were a fantastic team and a force to be reckoned with. I think they will do damage. I think you also have to give credit to the opposition, they were brilliant.
Russo, however, had a different response when asked about being rusty, as did manager Wiegman in her post-match comments.
“Yeah, I think so,” Russo said, when asked if the team took a long time to get the game started because they were rusty after so long without a competitive game. “We as players are the first to recognize that.
“We will return to training this week and train hard to continue, but tournaments are always about winning. This is the most important thing.
“I never worry about a lack of goals or a win with this team. I think we have a very special and talented team. I know people show up at the right time.
Who else is in the English group?
England’s last match in Group D will be against China, who complete the group with Haiti and Denmark.
What are the other World Cup groups like?
Group A: New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Switzerland
Group B: Australia, Ireland, Nigeria, Canada
Group C: Spain, Costa Rica, Zambia, Japan
Group E: United States, Vietnam, Netherlands, Portugal
Group F: France, Jamaica, Brazil, Panama
Group G: Sweden, South Africa, Italy, Argentina
Group H: Germany, Morocco, Colombia, South Korea
What are the fixtures?
Who is in the England squad?
Guardians: Mary Earps (Manchester United), Hannah Hampton (Aston Villa), Ellie Roebuck (Manchester City)
Defenders: Millie Bright (Chelsea), Lucy Bronze (Barcelona), Jess Carter (Chelsea), Niamh Charles (Chelsea), Alex Greenwood (Manchester City), Esme Morgan (Manchester City), Lotte Wubben-Moy (Arsenal)
Midfielders: Laura Coombs (Manchester City), Jordan Nobbs (Aston Villa), Georgia Stanway (Bayern Munich), Ella Toone (Manchester United), Keira Walsh (Barcelona), Katie Zelem (Manchester United)
Forwards: Rachel Daly (Aston Villa), Bethany England (Tottenham Hotspur), Lauren Hemp (Manchester City), Lauren James (Chelsea), Chloe Kelly (Manchester City), Katie Robinson (Brighton & Hove Albion), Alessia Russo (Manchester United)
England face their biggest danger of the group in Denmark. Support them to always come out on top with these Women’s World Cup free bets.
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