News Update


All you need to know about the Women’s World Cup 2023 final between England and Spain.

The Lionesses will attempt to win the championship for the first time, as well as becoming the first England side to do so since 1966.

A Spain side, also in their first final, stands in their way, with 75,000 supporters anticipated at Stadium Australia (11:00 BST kick-off).

Millions more will tune in to BBC One to watch the action live, with build-up from Australia beginning at 09:45.

The victors will be the fifth different country to be crowned world champions in the tournament’s ninth edition.

The only other winners are the United States (four times), Germany (twice), Norway, and Japan.

“Everyone’s talking about 1966, so let’s be at our best on Sunday and try to be successful,” England manager Sarina Wiegman said.

“Making a final is special, but with this team and the challenges we had, how we find a way to solve problems all the time has been amazing – [it’s] very special being in a final, but now we want to win it too.”

The Lionesses will compete in their blue outfit 13 months after overcoming Germany at Wembley to win the European Championship for the first time.


Watch the Women’s World Cup final between Spain and England live on BBC One.
Sarina Wiegman is the driving force behind the Lionesses’ success.
Choose your England starting XI for the World Cup final vs Spain.
Will the Lionesses overcome the final hurdle?
While England’s route to the Euro 2022 title was relatively straightforward, their trip to the World Cup final has been anything but.

Prior to this tournament, they lost three stars from that triumph to knee injuries – Leah Williamson, Beth Mead, and Fran Kirby – while they have also been tested in Australia, losing key players Keira Walsh and Lauren James to injury and suspension, respectively, and coming through a penalty shootout against Nigeria.

But Wiegman’s team has remained composed under duress, and they have only trailed for seven minutes – against Colombia in the quarter-finals.

Meanwhile, Walsh only missed one game since her injury was not as severe as initially thought, while James is eligible for the final after serving a two-game suspension for stamping on Nigeria’s Michelle Alozie.

Wiegman will have to decide whether to remain with the lineup that defeated Australia 3-1 in the semi-finals, or to bring back James, who was England’s greatest player before her red card.

“It’s a dream come true to be in the World Cup final,” said captain Millie Bright, who was awarded the armband following Williamson’s injury. It’s a great sensation to lead the girls out.

“We have a game plan that we must put into action.” Everyone understands how significant this is. We know how fervently our country back home wishes for us to win.”

‘Wiegman is elevating all women’s hopes.’
How England and Spain made it to the World Cup final
Listen: Where it all began – the first Lionesses La Roja put controversy aside
Against a backdrop of turbulence, discord, and a 4-0 defeat by Japan in the group stage, Spain, rated sixth in the world – two places below England – has made it to the final.

Reports of a schism between manager Jorge Vilda and his players have dogged La Roja throughout this campaign.

La Roja, who are competing in their third World Cup, have improved since their crushing setback by Japan, defeating Switzerland, the Netherlands, and Sweden.

“Spain has always been a football-loving country, but it was not our space, or so they made us feel,” said centre-back Irene Paredes.

“We want to play football, and [those before us] pushed for more investment in women’s football.” We have the possibility to compete in a World Cup final. It’s time to have fun.”

The majority of their roster is built up of Champions League winners Barcelona players, including Ballon d’Or winner Alexia Putellas in 2021 and 2022.

Salma Paralluelo, a 19-year-old striker, has stolen the show, scoring against Sweden in the semi-finals after coming on as a replacement after scoring against the Netherlands in the quarter-finals.

The contentious Spain’s coach is aiming for World Cup victory.
Alexia Putellas has been named the finest female footballer in 2022.
Listen: ‘We always thought’ Spain would reach the World Cup final.
Wiegman vs. Vilda, a boss battle
During Euro 2022, Jorge Vilda and Sarina Wiegman
Sarina Wiegman triumphed against Jorge Vilda in their most recent meeting at Euro 2022.
While England’s Wiegman has earned great acclaim for unifying her side and bringing them to the next level, Spain’s Vilda has been dogged by controversy since a player mutiny last September.

The Dutchwoman has reached a fourth major event final in a row, having won back-to-back Euros with the Netherlands and England, either side of a World Cup final failure with her home country in 2019.

Wiegman’s only setback with the Lionesses came in an April friendly against Australia at Brentford, and she has won 18 of 19 major tournament matches as a manager.

Meanwhile, Vilda has been embroiled in a fight with 15 of his players, after claims of concerns over training techniques and insufficient game preparation.

A standoff developed, and just three of those players were named to his World Cup team, leaving some world-class talent at home, including Champions League winners Patri Guijarro, Mapi Leon, and Claudia Pina.

Ella Toone of England celebrates scoring against Spain at Euro 2022.
Ella Toone scores in the 84th minute as England comes from behind to defeat Spain 2-1 and win the Euro 2022 championship.
England and Spain have never met in a World Cup, and the Lionesses have only lost two of their last 13 games versus La Roja (winning seven and tying the other four).

Their most recent match was in the Euro 2022 quarter-finals, when England required a late equalizer from Ella Toone and an extra-time winner from Georgia Stanway to advance to the semi-finals.

“It was a game where we knew we were ahead, but the outcome is what matters,” Vilda remarked. “[Sunday] will be a tactical match, and it’s a final that we’re going to fight with everything.”

There was royalty in attendance.
The final, which has a capacity of 75,784, begins at 20:00 local time in Australia, which is nine hours ahead of England.

La Roja will be cheered on by royalty in Sydney, with Spain’s Queen Letizia in attendance.

Kensington Palace has announced that Football Association President Prince William would cheer on the England squad from the United Kingdom.

In anticipation of the Lionesses’ encounter, football fan zones in London have already sold out.


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