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Published 26 February 2024 5 min read
England Women's Senior Team

Match Report: England Women 5-1 Italy

Written by:

Ben Hart

  • L. Wubben-Moy (1′)
  • L. Hemp (21′) (34′)
  • E. Toone (69′)
  • R. Daly (79′)
Women's International Friendlies 1
Tuesday 27 February, 05:00 PM Estadio Nuevo Mirador
5 1
HT: 3 - 1
  • M. Cambiaghi (48′)
  • A. Caruso (73′)
  • E. Severini (81′)
28 Feb 2024 6:55

Highlights: England 5-1 Italy

The Lionesses beat Italy in Spain thank to five-star performance as they prepare for their forthcoming EURO qualifying campaign

Keira Walsh in control against Italy during the game at Coventry City FC in February 2023
Keira Walsh in control against Italy during the game at Coventry City FC in February 2023

England v Italy
Women's International
5pm GMT, Tuesday 27 February 2024
Live on ITV4
Estadio Nuevo Mirador, Algeciras, Spain

Kiera Walsh believes the current England camp in Spain has helped showcase the ‘special’ squad’s strength in depth.

Head coach Sarina Wiegman made several changes to the Lionesses’ starting line-up for Friday night’s 7-2 win over Austria.

One of those alterations saw Georgia Stanway start in the deeper role which is usually occupied by Walsh and 20-year-old Grace Clinton make her senior team debut, which the Tottenham Hotspur loanee marked with a goal and an impressive display.

Speaking in the press conference looking ahead to Tuesday night’s friendly with Italy, Walsh said: “We don’t want to be predictable in the way we play and we don’t want to be predictable in who is playing. That is something which is very special about this England team because we have such good squad depth and anyone could play at any time.

“For Sarina to try that (Stanway in the deeper role) is very important and it was a good game where we got a good result. We are hoping to do the same against Italy.”

On Tuesday at the Estadio Nuevo Mirador in Algeciras, England will face an Italy side who finished second in their UEFA Women’s Nations League group after beating Switzerland twice, defeating world champions Spain 3-2 and drawing with World Cup semi-finalists Sweden.

The Lionesses beat Italy 2-1 at last year’s Arnold Clark Cup but the head coach has since changed, with Andrea Soncin taking over in September.

Wiegman said: “They have had a great Nations League campaign. They play a little differently because they changed coaches. They have different shapes they have played in and they want to have a really high press on us, so that is something that we will have to be aware of tomorrow and a challenge for us, plus they really want to play the game.

“You can see the competition in Italy has really improved over the years already, the team is doing well and they did well in the Nations League, so we are really excited about tomorrow.”

Walsh added: “They are a good team, with strong, physical players and it will be interesting for us to figure out how to play out of their high press.

“So I am looking forward to that and I am looking forward to the game.”

The Spain trip has seen the England women’s senior team and under-23s on camp together, which has given staff the opportunity to promote youngsters as required.

Naomi Layzell had trained with the senior team in the build-up to the Austria match and on Sunday she was back with the Lionesses again, alongside Aggie-Beever-Jones, Laura Blindkilde Brown and Jessica Naz.

And Walsh said the senior players are happy to see the young players being promoted and welcome the increase in competition for places.

The Barcelona midfielder said: “It is the hope that they do [one day] come in and take our place. It is really nice for them to be in and around us.

“Four of them trained with us yesterday and they had a really good session.

“Us working closer with them gives us a chance to share ideas on football and the idea is that they will be coming in [one day] and taking our shirts off us.”

Keira Walsh in control against Italy during the game at Coventry City FC in February 2023
Keira Walsh in control against Italy during the game at Coventry City FC in February 2023

Italy in profile

Nickname: Le Azzurre
Andrea Soncin
Captain: Christiana Girelli
UEFA Women's EURO best performance: Runners-up in 1993 and 1997
FIFA Women's World Cup best performance: Quarter-finals in 1991 and 2019
Last encounter: England 2-1 Italy, 19 February 2023
20 Feb 2023 9:08

Highlights: England 2-1 Italy

See the best of the action from England's last game against Italy at the 2023 Arnold Clark Cup

Match Stats

● England have lost just one of their last seven matches against Italy in all competitions (W5 D1), and are unbeaten in four against them (W3 D1) since 3-1 loss in the Cyprus Cup back in March 2012.

● The Lionesses will take on Italy for a second time under Sarina Wiegman, with the previous meeting taking place in last year’s Arnold Clark Cup in February (a 2-1 win for England courtesy of a brace from Rachel Daly).

● None of the previous seven meetings between England (four wins) and Italy (three wins) to be played outside of either country has ended level, with the Lionesses winning four of the last five such encounters, including the most recent one in March 2014 (a 2-0 win in the Cyprus Cup in Cyprus).

● England have scored 13 goals across their last two games (Six v Scotland & seven v Austria), scoring six-plus goals in back-to-back matches for a second time under Wiegman, with the previous instance coming in her first two games in charge of the Lionesses (8-0 v North Macedonia & 10-0 v Luxembourg). They’ve never scored six-plus goals in three successive games previously.

● Having lost four of five games between July-October 2023 in all competitions (W1), Italy have since gone unbeaten in four (W2 D2), keeping a clean sheet in each of their last two matches.

● The Lionesses have lost just one of their last ten friendlies (W6 D3), with that defeat coming against Australia in April last year (0-2).

● Italy have won just two of their last eight friendlies (D3 L3), failing to score in five of those matches. Their two wins during this run came against Colombia (2-1 in April 2023) and New Zealand (1-0 in July 2023).

● England have won just two of their eleven matches on Spanish soil across all competitions (D6 L3), however those two victories have come in their last three such games (4-0 v Japan in November 2022 & 7-2 v Austria last time out).

Beth Mead has scored 24 goals from just 35 shots on target for England under Wiegman – netting eleven goals more than her xG total would suggest (12.9) – with the Lionesses going on to win all 13 games in which she’s found the back of the net in this time. Overall, she’s been involved in 43 goals in just 27 appearances under the Dutchwoman (24 goals, 19 assists), netting a brace last time out against Austria.

● Against Austria last time out, Grace Clinton became just the second player to make her England debut under Wiegman and score, after Jessica Park v Japan in November 2022. The last player to score in each of her first two appearances for the Lionesses was Danielle Carter under Mark Sampson in September 2015-16, who netted back-to-back hat-tricks in her first two games.

06 Mar 2013 4:51

From the archive: England 4-2 Italy

A look back to our game with Italy at the Cyprus Cup back in 2013, which featured a debut goal from Jordan Nobbs

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Follow the game live on the day, with our team news, stats and commentary

Sarina Wiegman has made five changes to England Women’s starting line-up against Italy.

The Lionesses head coach made a number of alterations for Friday night’s 7-2 victory over Austria and tonight’s game at the Estadio Nuevo Mirador, Algeciras, has seen the return of several familiar faces.

Mary Earps is back in goal, with Lucy Bronze returning to a back four which also includes Lotte Wubben-Moy.

Kiera Walsh will captain the team from midfield and Chloe Kelly will also return.

England: 1 Mary Earps (Manchester United), 2 Lucy Bronze (Barcelona), 3 Niamh Charles (Chelsea), 4 Kiera Walsh (Barcelona) ©, 5 Lotte Wubben-Moy (Arsenal), 6 Alex Greenwood (Manchester City), 7 Chloe Kelly (Manchester City), 8 Georgia Stanway (Bayern Munich), 9 Alessia Russo (Arsenal), 10 Grace Clinton (Tottenham Hotspur on loan from Manchester United), 11 Lauren Hemp (Manchester City)

Substitutes: 13 Hannah Hampton (Chelsea), 21 Khiara Keating (Manchester City), 12 Jess Carter (Chelsea), 14 Ella Toone (Manchester United), 15 Esme Morgan (Manchester City), 16 Lauren James (Chelsea), 17 Beth Mead (Arsenal), 18 Maya Le Tissier (Manchester United), 19 Rachel Daly (Aston Villa), 20 Jess Park (Manchester City), 22 Millie Turner (Manchester United)

Match Line Up

England players celebrate Lotte Wubben-Moy's opening goal against Italy
England players celebrate Lotte Wubben-Moy's opening goal against Italy

A first England women’s senior team goal from Lotte Wubben-Moy helped the Lionesses to a convincing 5-1 friendly victory over Italy in Spain.

Sarina Wiegman’s side came flying out of the traps and took an early lead through Wubben-Moy’s header.

Hemp ensured England’s dominance was rewarded with two goals before the break but the deficit was cut late in the half by Italy's Michela Cambiaghi.

Italy had some chances at 3-1 but then substitutes Ella Toone and Rachel Daly struck to add a late gloss to the scoreline, setting England up nicely ahead of their first Euro 2025 qualifiers in April.  

The Lionesses made a fast start in the 7-2 victory over Austria on Friday and made an even quicker one here.

Bang on 60 seconds, Wubben-Moy – one of the five changes to the side – stooped to head home an Alex Greenwood corner.

The Arsenal centre-half was clearly in the mood and came close to a second just moments later but a more conventional downward header was well saved by Laura Giuliani.

The set-piece chances kept coming for England, with Greenwood’s in-swingers causing havoc inside a crowded Italy penalty area.

Then from a particularly devilish Greenwood cross into the six-yard-box, an attempted clearance diverted back goalwards off Hemp’s foot and went past Giuliani.

The Villa striker’s second was far more intentional and arrived from yet another corner. Kelly’s initial delivery was cleared but Georgia Stanway kept the ball alive and volleyed expertly into the box where Hemp timed her run brilliantly to loop a header into the top corner.

 Sarina Wiegman made five changes to her starting line-up against Italy
Sarina Wiegman made five changes to her starting line-up against Italy

Hemp even had a chance for a first-half hat-trick before the break but snatched at a loose ball before Kelly and the in-form Alessia Russo were denied by a double save from Giuliani after a wonderfully disguised pass from the lively Grace Clinton.

Before the half was out, Le Azzurre pulled one back. Mary Earps was alert to the first moment of danger, getting down quickly to deny a close-range shot from the speedy Sofia Cantore, but the England stopper was helpless moments later when Cambiaghi poked home.

The Lionesses did not allow that concession to throw them off their stride and continued to probe after the break.

Clinton went closest in the early knockings of the second period, heading just over from a whipped Kelly cross.

 Grace Clinton kept her place in the team and impressed once again
Grace Clinton kept her place in the team and impressed once again

Italy enjoyed more possession as the half wore on and had their chances but so did England, as substitute Lauren James forced Giuliani into a flying save.

James was in the groove and then laid on England’s fourth for fellow substitute Toone, who cushioned a brilliant volley into the roof of the net just five minutes after her arrival on the pitch.

And Daly made an equally instant impact off the bench, capitalising on a poor back-pass to round Giuliani and tap into an empty net.

Next up for England is the start of their Euro 2025 qualifying campaign and they will discover their opponents when the draw is made next Tuesday.

Match Line Up

England: 1 Mary Earps (Manchester United), 2 Lucy Bronze (Barcelona), 3 Niamh Charles (Chelsea), 4 Kiera Walsh (Barcelona) ©, 5 Lotte Wubben-Moy (Arsenal), 6 Alex Greenwood (Manchester City), 7 Chloe Kelly (Manchester City), 8 Georgia Stanway (Bayern Munich), 9 Alessia Russo (Arsenal), 10 Grace Clinton (Tottenham Hotspur on loan from Manchester United), 11 Lauren Hemp (Manchester City)

Substitutes: 12 Jess Carter (Chelsea) for Charles 46’, 16 Lauren James (Chelsea) for Russo 46’, 14 Ella Toone (Manchester United) for Stanway 64’, 20 Jess Park (Manchester City) for Clinton 64’, 19 Rachel Daly (Aston Villa) for Kelly 71’, 22 Millie Turner (Manchester United) for Greenwood 80’

Substitutes not used: 13 Hannah Hampton (Chelsea), 21 Khiara Keating (Manchester City), 15 Esme Morgan (Manchester City), 17 Beth Mead (Arsenal), 18 Maya Le Tissier (Manchester United)

Goals: Wubben-Moy 1’, Hemp 21’, 34’, Toone 69’, Daly 79’