All eyes will be on England manager Sarina Wiegman as she names her 23-player World Cup squad on Wednesday – 50 days before the tournament begins in Australia and New Zealand.

Wiegman will announce her final squad at community club Boldmere St Michaels at 2pm and it is expected she will also name around five stand-by players.

A raft of injuries to key players, including captain Leah Williamson, has given the Lionesses’ boss some dilemmas over the last few months. With England looking to follow-up their Euro 2022 success Down Under, Mail Sport takes a look at the five big decisions facing their manager.

Sarina Wiegman is facing major decisions due to a raft of injuries to England star players

Sarina Wiegman is facing major decisions due to a raft of injuries to England star players

England captain Leah Williamson has been forced out of the World Cup due to a knee injury

England captain Leah Williamson has been forced out of the World Cup due to a knee injury

Does Wiegman gamble on Beth Mead?

It has been six months since Arsenal forward Mead tore her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). Wiegman said in March that she would need a ‘miracle’ to make the World Cup and while it seems Mead has become resigned to not being fit in time, she has not given up hope.

The forward won the golden boot at the Euros and was in fantastic form for Arsenal when she suffered the serious knee injury. She is back running and ahead of schedule in her recovery but there are doubts over whether she would be match-fit in time for England’s first game.

Had FIFA allowed managers to name a bigger squad of 26, Wiegman would likely have included Mead on the off chance she could have played 10 or 15 minutes if needed. But it is unlikely she will risk naming her in a 23-player squad.

It could also be detrimental to Mead to try and rush her back too early given it could risk setting her back in her recovery.

Beth Mead is recovering from an ACL injury but the World Cup is likely to come too soon

Beth Mead is recovering from an ACL injury but the World Cup is likely to come too soon

Who will take the final GK spot?

With Mary Earps set to be the No 1 and Ellie Roebuck the first back-up choice, it’s likely to be a straight shoot-out between Hannah Hampton and Emily Ramsey for the third goalkeeper spot.

Hampton was part of the Euro 2022 squad but was dropped from the next three camps before a recall in April.

Ramsey, who spent the season on loan at Everton from Manchester United, was given her first call-up in February but had to withdraw through injury and does not have a senior cap to her name.

Hannah Hampton was part of England's Euro 2022 squad

Emily Ramsey is yet to be capped by England but could make the squad

Hannah Hampton and Emily Ramsey will hope to take the third goalkeeper spot in the squad

Who will fill the defensive void?

Williamson’s injury means Alex Greenwood will likely play alongside Millie Bright at centre back, but that would mean playing a right-footed player at left back. Greenwood is the only recognised left-footed player Wiegman has picked in defence. The other options in that area – Jess Carter, Niamh Charles and Esme Morgan, are all right-footed. Rachel Daly, who played left back during the Euros, is now primarily a forward for Wiegman but is also right-footed.

One option could be to bring back former captain Steph Houghton, who could play centre back alongside Millie Bright, allowing Greenwood to play left back. The 35-year-old is the most experienced option available to Wiegman but the pair’s relationship has been fragile since Houghton was left out of the Euros squad last summer.

England’s other centre back options are all young and have few caps between them. Maya Le Tissier has had the best season by far but has only two senior appearances. The fact Houghton was left out of the April squad would indicate Wiegman will continue to favour the more rookie options.

Alex Greenwood looks set to cover Williamson's absence by moving into central defence

Alex Greenwood looks set to cover Williamson’s absence by moving into central defence

Man United's Maya Le Tissier is likely to be named in the squad to provide defensive cover

Man United’s Maya Le Tissier is likely to be named in the squad to provide defensive cover

Youth or experience?

There are a couple of places in the forward areas that could go to trusted and experienced players or up and coming youngsters.

Bethany England and Nikita Parris were both members of the Euro-winning squad but have been in and out of the set-up since. England has not been picked since September but finished the season with more goals than Alessia Russo after a January move to Tottenham.

The forward scored 13 goals in 11 appearances in a struggling Spurs team. Parris, meanwhile, finished the campaign strongly for Manchester United and is a well-liked member of the squad.

But both Parris and England could miss out for young Brighton winger Katie Robinson. The 20-year-old managed six assists and four goals for the Seagulls and has been in Wiegman’s last three squads. She is clearly a player that the England boss admires but she will have to decide whether she could make a bigger impact off the bench than one of the more experienced options.

Bethany England scored 13 goals in 11 appearances for a struggling Spurs side

Nikita Parris finished the season strongly for Man United

Bethany England, left, and Nikita Parris, right, have made their cases for inclusion in the squad

Midfield cover?

Keira Walsh and Georgia Stanway will be the starting central midfielders for England but Wiegman must decide who she should be their cover.

Manchester City’s Laura Coombs seems to have moved ahead of Manchester United captain Katie Zelem in the last few months. Coombs received her first call-up since 2018 back in February and was named in the last squad in April while Zelem was dropped.

Both players have different qualities. Coombs is a tidier player who will spray the ball about but can also burst forward into the box to score. Zelem, meanwhile, is stronger and harder to knock off the ball and is one of the best set-piece takers in the WSL.

Jordan Nobbs is a more attack-minded midfielder and is likely to be the back-up No 10 choice to Ella Toone. Nobbs flourished in the second half of the season after joining Aston Villa from Arsenal but has struggled for game time under Wiegman, meaning her place is not a certainty. Jess Park is also an option there and is another young player who has impressed Wiegman during a handful of appearances.

Man City's Laura Coombs, right, is among the midfielder's under consideration for inclusion

Man City’s Laura Coombs, right, is among the midfielder’s under consideration for inclusion

England Squad – Players set to be included:

Goalkeepers: Mary Earps, Ellie Roebuck

Defenders: Lucy Bronze, Millie Bright, Alex Greenwood, Jess Carter

Midfielders: Keira Walsh, Georgia Stanway, Ella Toone

Forwards: Alessia Russo, Rachel Daly, Lauren James, Chloe Kelly, Lauren Hemp

Likely: Hannah Hampton, Lotte Wubben-Moy, Maya Le Tissier, Niamh Charles, Jordan Nobbs, Laura Coombs

Could go either way: Esme Morgan, Katie Robinson, Jess Park, Katie Zelem, Nikita Parris, Bethany England, Lucy Parker, Emily Ramsey, Beth Mead

Post source: Daily mail

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