Arsenal and England legend Kelly Smith has backed Lauren James to become a key figure for the Lionesses over the next few years.
James has already begun to make a name for herself at Chelsea and Smith believes the 21-year-old will also have a big impact at the World Cup:
“Lauren James is such a superstar in the making and I’m excited to see her perform on the big stage. In the next few years, I think she will be the number ten for England because of her creativity and vision.”
James had an excellent season for the Blues, scoring eight goals in 33 appearances for Emma Hayes’ side. The forward also made her debut at senior level for England back in September.
She came on for the final ten minutes of England’s World Cup qualifier against Austria, before getting her first goal for her country in a 4-0 win over South Korea in the Arnold Clark Cup earlier this year.
After being included in Sarina Wiegman’s 23-player squad for the World Cup, there is every chance that James will set the tournament alight with her performances.
England’s group stage schedule
James’ team played a behind-closed-doors friendly against Canada earlier this week as they step up their preparations for the World Cup. The Lionesses were held to a 0-0 draw but almost every player in the squad was given a run-out.
It is not long now before England kick off their first game. They take on Haiti in Brisbane next Saturday before travelling to face Denmark at the Allianz Stadium in Sydney six days later. Their final group fixture will be versus China in Adelaide on August 1st.
Wiegman’s team are favourites to top the group. They will be hoping that there are no slip-ups in their opener versus Haiti before facing two tougher opponents.