Beth thrilled with England call-up for Nordic challenge

Beth Mead
Beth Mead
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BETH Mead is thrilled that her “hard work has paid off” after being picked for England Under-23s for the annual Nordic Tournament.

Mead, who has scored four goals for Sunderland Ladies in the Women’s Super League this term, has been named as one of the five strikers in Julie Chipchase’s squad.

England go to Norway at the end of the month when the Young Lions will play the host nation on May 27, Sweden on the 29th and the USA on the 31st.

Mead has already represented the Under-23s this year after being picked in the party which played two games in La Manga, in Spain, at the end of February.

The striker’s selection for the Nordic Tournament is no great shock. Mead has not only bagged four goals but had a hand in five of the other six goals the Lady Black Cats have scored in WSL1.

Chipchase will be assisted by former Sunderland boss Mick Mulhern, who was at Hetton on Saturday when Mead scored after just 25 seconds and then set up Brooke Chaplen for the home side’s second in a 3-0 win over Birmingham City.

“I’m glad that my hard work has paid off recently and I have got a call up for the Under-23s,” said Mead.

“I just hope I can be successful out there with them.”

Mead will be joined by a former Sunderland youngster, Lucy Staniforth.

The Liverpool midfielder, one of the young talents brought through by Mulhern, is highly-rated but has been through some terrible injury troubles.

Mead’s selection is not the only good news for Sunderland on the international scene.

Keeper Rachael Laws is on stand-by for England’s senior World Cup squad going to Canada next month.

Boss Mark Sampson has selected Siobhan Chamberlain, Karen Bardsley and Carly Telford as his stoppers and should anything happen to any of the trio, the Lady Black Cats vice-captain would get the call.

ENGLAND U23 SQUAD: Keepers: Mary Earps (Bristol Acad), Alex Brooks (Man City)

Defenders: Hannah Blundell (Chelsea), Millie Bright (Chelsea), Meaghan Sargeant (Birmingham),Martha Harris (Liverpool), Aoife Mannion (Birmingham), Jemma Rose (Arsenal)

Midfielders: Sherry McCue (Aston Villa), Kasia Lipka (Doncaster) Jess Sigsworth (Notts County), Jade Bailey (Arsenal), Drew Spence (Chelsea), Hannah Dale (Liverpool), Lucy Staniforth (Liverpool)

Forwards: Nikita Parris (Man City – on loan from Everton), Kirsty Linnett (Birmingham), Dan Carter (Arsenal), Beth Mead (Sunderland), Mel Lawley (Birmingham)