Team GB women’s football head coach Hege Riise has announced her 18-player squad for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Women’s Super League runners-up Manchester City are well represented, with 11 of their players making the final cut.
Out of the 18, a total of 15 players are from England, with just two from Scotland and one from Wales. Northern Ireland are not represented in Team GB this time around.
Sophie Ingle will make history as the first Welsh player to represent Team GB at the Olympic Games.
Riise, highlighting the importance of selecting players with experience in major tournaments, said:
“Being in an Olympics is special. Having players with experience of it, they can almost be coaches on the field, in training, in the meetings – it is so important.”
As such, five London 2012 Team GB veterans are listed in the squad. England skipper Steph Houghton (Manchester City), American-born English keeper Karen Bardsley (Manchester City), Scotland midfielder Kim Little (Arsenal), midfielder Jill Scott (Manchester City) and striker Ellen White (Manchester City) will all be adding experience to the ranks.
Rachel Daly of the Houston Dash and Olympique Lyonnaise striker Nikita Parris are the only two players to be registered at clubs outside of Great Britain.
Riise is no stranger to Olympic success, having won gold with Norway at Sydney 2000. The interim England head coach will aim to keep raising the bar.
“(Gold) is what we are planning for," added Riise. "Of course, you can never take away a dream and if you dream big then it is better to achieve it.”
Team GB kick off their Olympic campaign against Chile in Sapporo on July 21. They will then face host nation Japan on the 24th before heading south to Kashima for the final group stage match against Canada on the 27th.
Team GB full squad
Goalkeepers: Karen Bardsley (Manchester City), Ellie Roebuck (Manchester City)
Defenders: Millie Bright (Chelsea), Lucy Bronze (Manchester City), Rachel Daly (Houston Dash), Steph Houghton (Manchester City), Demi Stokes (Manchester City), Leah Williamson (Arsenal)
Midfielders: Sophie Ingle (Chelsea), Kim Little (Arsenal), Jill Scott (Manchester City), Keira Walsh (Manchester City), Caroline Weir (Manchester City)
Forwards: Lauren Hemp (Manchester City), Fran Kirby (Chelsea), Nikita Parris (Olympique Lyonnaise), Georgia Stanway (Manchester City), Ellen White (Manchester City)
Reserves: Sandy MacIver (Everton), Lotte Wubben-Moy (Arsenal), Niamh Charles (Chelsea), Ella Toone (Manchester United)