National Coach Hope Powell has recalled three of her star players - Kelly Smith,
National Coach Hope Powell has recalled three of her star players - Kelly Smith, Faye White and Katie Chapman - to the England women's squad for their internationals against Australia and Germany next month...
England are set to face Australia for the first time in their 31-year history at Burnley FC on Thursday September 4th - a game which will be televised live on Sky Sports. England will then travel to Darmstadt to face European champions Germany a week later on Thursday September 11th.
Smith has not played for the England squad since the 4-1 away victory at Holland in April 2003 after sustaining a cruciate knee ligament injury and then injuring her ankle just months after her return to action in the world's only professional league, WUSA, in America.
Fulham midfielder Chapman returns to the squad after giving birth to her first child, Harvey, in April this year, while Faye White has made the return to action for Arsenal this month after also recovering from cruciate knee ligament damage.
Local Burnley born and bred goalkeeper Rachel Brown is in the squad as expected and will return to league action with Everton prior to the game, after the Icelandic season finishes this weekend.
Also called to the squad is 18-year-old goalkeeper Karen Bardsley who is based in California, but qualifies to play for England through parentage. Bardsley had a trial with England when they played the USA in May 2003, before debuting for the Under-19s side in the European Championships last month where they reached the semi-finals.
Following the Australia game, the England medical team will assess the fitness of White and Everton midfielder Sammy Britton before taking a call on whether to take them to Germany for the second international.
Charlton Athletic midfielder Fara Williams, while missing from the Australia squad, will travel with the team for the Germany game.
Powell has also placed on stand-by for the two fixtures a number of girls involved in the recent England Under-19 European Championship squad. This includes promising 16-year-olds Eniola Aluko and Hayley Kemp, as well as central defender Jo Traynor of Liverpool.
The squad will meet up on Sunday 31st August following The FA Nationwide Premier League programme and will disperse after the Australia game, before meeting up again after their club fixtures on Sunday September 7th. An open training session and press conference will be held in Lancashire ahead of the Australia game, with full details to follow.
Tickets for the England v Australia match are set to go on sale next week. For further details check out TheFA.com or www.burnleyfootballclub.net