Phil Neville Sticks to What He Knows in England World Cup Squad Announcement

England head coach Phil Neville at a postgame news conference at the 2019 SheBelieves Cup.

England head coach Phil Neville has announced his squad for the 2019 World Cup with few surprises in a familiar looking Lionesses squad.

Led by captain Steph Houghton, Neville has stuck to what and who he knows ahead of his first major tournament as a head coach.

Ellie Roebuck, Chioma Ubogagu, and Gemma Bonner miss out of those who were in the last squad for games against Canada and Spain, while Lyon’s Izzy Christiansen has also not been selected after injury in the SheBelieves Cup back in February put her hopes of a first World Cup in doubt.

It leaves Neville with 23 players who have regularly played under him during his opening 15 months in charge, with eight players going to their first major senior tournament and another three going to their first World Cup.

One of Neville’s toughest choices was narrowing his goalkeeping options down from four to three, and it’s the least experienced of the foursome in Roebuck who has been left out of the squad in favor of Wolfsburg’s Mary Earps, who was a non-squad player at Euro 2017 under Mark Sampson.

It leaves Karen Bardsley and Carly Telford to bring the experience of major tournaments with the pair set to battle it out for the number one shirt.

Alongside the experienced defensive foursome of Lucy Bronze, Steph Houghton, Millie Bright, and Demi Stokes, Neville has selected Manchester United captain Alex Greenwood along with Abbie McManus and Leah Williamson, both of whom are going to their first major tournament.

In midfield, Jade Moore’s return from injury has been a timely one with options thin on the ground, with Keira Walsh, Lucy Staniforth, and Georgia Stanway all making the cut for the first time alongside Karen Carney and Jill Scott.

There’s a more familiar look about Neville’s attack with the likes of Toni Duggan, Fran Kirby, Ellen White, Nikita Parris, and Jodie Taylor all selected, while Beth Mead’s impressive performances have earned her a spot.

Full Squad

Goalkeepers: Karen Bardsley (Manchester City), Mary Earps (Wolfsburg), Carly Telford (Chelsea)

Defenders: Millie Bright (Chelsea), Lucy Bronze (Lyon), Rachel Daly (Houston Dash), Alex Greenwood (Manchester United), Steph Houghton (Manchester City), Abbie McManus (Manchester City), Demi Stokes (Manchester City), Leah Williamson (Arsenal)

Midfielders: Karen Carney (Chelsea), Jade Moore (Reading), Jill Scott (Manchester City), Lucy Staniforth (Birmingham City), Georgia Stanway (Manchester City), Keira Walsh (Manchester City)

Forwards: Toni Duggan (FC Barcelona), Fran Kirby (Chelsea), Beth Mead (Arsenal), Nikita Parris (Manchester City), Jodie Taylor (Seattle Reign), Ellen White (Birmingham City)