November spells two international games for the England Lionesses. As well as testing themselves, the team will also be looking to extend their no-loss streak under Sarina Wiegman.
The game, which is set to take place at Pinatar Arena in Spain, will see England facing Japan for the first time since 2020. The two sides last met in the SheBelieves Cup. At the time, former England captain Steph Houghton guided England to a 1-0 win in New Jersey, US.
However, Futoshi Ikeda’s Japan will be looking for revenge as well as their 14th win consecutive win ahead of their FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 group stage.
In the upcoming World Cup, Japan has been sorted into Group C, alongside Spain, Costa Rica and also Zambia. Meanwhile, England has been drawn into Group D with The People’s Republic of China, Denmark, and whoever wins the Group B playoffs next year.
What does Sarina Wiegman think of the November friendlies?
As per England Football, Wiegman said that she is really pleased that this international friendly is going ahead.
“I am really pleased we can continue to test ourselves against strong opposition, especially as we are fully focused on our preparation for the World Cup,”
“Japan are one of the best teams in Asia and offers a different style of play to what we are used to,” she continued. “I hope a change of scenery and good climate for that time of year can contribute to keeping the players fresh after what has been an exciting and at the same time intense year for all.”
This match against Japan will be England’s penultimate of 2022. The final will therefore be their game against Norway on Tuesday 15 November.
England v Japan start time
England, with 2051.61 points, is considered the fourth-best team in the world, according to the recent FIFA Women’s World Rankings. Japan however sit in 11th place with 1918.16 points.
So, if you’re wanting to watch the world number four vs the world number 11 on Friday 11 November, you can tune in for kick-off at 7 pm GMT.
England v Japan TV channel
On Friday, fans across the country will have the chance to watch the game live. It will be broadcasted via ITV4 and ITV Hub.
Women’s football coverage is set to begin at 6:15 pm, with kick-off coming at 7 pm on ITV4 and also via ITV Hub as mentioned above.
Which venue will host England v Japan?
As previously mentioned, the England v Japan match will take place at the Pinatar Arena, in Murcia, south-eastern Spain.
According to England Football, the U23 squad are the latest England women’s team to play in the arena.
In April, they played a doubleheader against the Netherlands. The two sides drew 0-0 in the first match. However, the Young Lionesses emerged victorious from the second with a 3-0 victory.
The Pinatar Arena is a 3,000-seat stadium and is expected to be heaving for the upcoming clash between England v Japan.
Who’s playing in the England v Japan match?
Earlier this month, England manager Wiegman announced the 25-strong England team she would be taking to the November friendlies.
The original team saw UEFA Women’s Euros 2022 winners Lucy Bronze, Keira Walsh and Beth Mead returning to the England squad, alongside Niamh Charles, Maya Le Tissier and Katie Robinson getting their first senior callups.
However, since the announcement on November 1, there have been a few injuries and illnesses forcing several players to withdraw from the England camp.
Fran Kirby, Lauren Hemp and Jordan Nobbs have all withdrawn from the team. Following their departure, Jess Park and Gabby George have been called up.
Bronze and Manchester City defender Alex Greenwood will also no longer play in the England v Japan match. This is due to Bronze testing positive for COVID and Greenwood sustaining “a minor injury”.
However, they will both remain at camp. It’s thought they will play in the England v Norway match next Tuesday.
It should also be mentioned that The Lionesses are still without their captain, Leah Williamson.
Since sustaining a foot injury in October, she has been unable to play in England’s recent friendlies.
It’s thought that Chelsea’s Millie Bright will continue to wear the captain’s armband in Williamson’s absence.
The England v Japan Squads:
Mary Earps, Sandy McIver, Ellie Roebuck, Millie Bright, Lucy Bronze, Rachel Daly, Alex Greenwood, Lotte Wubben-Moy, Esme Morgan, Maya Le Tissier, Jess Park, Gabby George, Georgia Stanway, Ella Toone, Keira Walsh, Katie Zelem, Lauren James, Chloe Kelly, Beth Mead, Nikita Parris, Alessia Russo and Ebony Salmon.
Shu Ohba, Momoko Tanaka, Ruka Norimatsu, Shiori Miyake, Aoba Fujino, Ayaka Yamashita, Kiko Seike, Hana Takahashi, Moeka Minami, Honoka Hayashi, Hini Sugita, Saori Takarada, Jun Endo, Hinata Miyazawa, Mina Tanaka, Riki Ueki, Nanami Kitamura, Saki Kumagai, Hikaru Naomoto, Fuka Nagano, Mana Iwabuchi, Yui Hasegawa and Risa Shimizu.
You can watch England v Japan on Friday 11 November on ITV4 and also on ITV Hub from 6:15 pm onwards.
Feature image credit: Getty