England will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the women’s team at the USA match in October

England will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the women’s team at the USA match in October

England women's training session, 1972
The England women played their first full international match against Scotland in November 1972 with England claiming a 3–2 victory.

England will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the senior women’s team during the international match against the United States at Wembley next month.

Members of the inaugural England squad from 1972 will line up with the current Lionesses before kick-off.

More than 100 former internationals are expected to attend the sold-out match on Friday 7 October.

“It’s great that we can say thank you to the legends of the Lionesses,” England coach Sarina Wiegman said.

“We are all grateful to the previous generation of players who paved the way for today’s growth and success.”

Players from the 1972 squad, which featured in England’s first senior international against Scotland (a 3-2 victory at Greenock, near Glasgow), will also receive a personalized England cap as part of the evening’s celebrations.

the The FA banned women’s football in 1921a time when women’s football drew 53,000 spectators, and it wasn’t until nearly 50 years later that the FA rescinded that ban in 1970.

Wiegman, who led England to victory in the 2022 European Women’s Championship this summer, added: “They all represented their country with so much talent, but they also fought very hard on and off the pitch to break down barriers and make women’s football what is now”. it is.

“Today’s players also know the challenges they faced and appreciate everything that has been done to give them the opportunities they now have.”

At halftime, all of the former players, who have been identified through a program of research commissioned by the FA, will be invited onto the pitch to be celebrated by the crowd.

Also in keeping with the 50th anniversary, the England women’s team adopts the men’s tradition of legacy numbers, in which players who have represented the country at a senior level are awarded their own exclusive number.

These legacy numbers will be announced in November and will be used on matchday jerseys from 2023.

FA Women’s Head Coach Kay Cossington said: “The USA game will be a fantastic opportunity to celebrate and thank all the Lionesses who have worn the jersey with pride since 1972.

“The FA is indebted to all the former players, all of whom are valued members of the ‘England family’. The success of the summer and the sell-out Wembley Stadium would not be possible without them and we hope they can reflect on the role they played. They have played and are enjoying their evening.

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