England play their penultimate fixture of 2022 on Friday evening as they face Japan in an international friendly in Murcia, Spain.
The two sides have made a recent habit of bumping into one another at major tournaments. England and Japan have played in each of the last three World Cups; the Lionesses came out on top in their group stage encounters in 2011 and 2019, either side of Japan’s last gasp semi-final victory in 2015.
Who will emerge victorious on Friday? Here’s everything you need to know about the fixture.
When is kick off? Friday 11 November, 19:00 (GMT)
Where is the match being played? Pinatar Arena
TV channel/live stream? ITV4
What time does coverage start? 18:15 (GMT)
England are without a number of key first team players for Friday’s fixture. Captain Leah Williamson was unavailable for selection for the squad due to a foot injury sustained during the last England camp, while Lauren Hemp and Jordan Nobbs have had to withdraw due to injury.
Fran Kirby has also been forced to pull out of the squad because of illness. Everton’s Jess Park and Gabby George have been subsequently called up.
Lucy Bronze is unavailable after testing positive for Covid-19, while Alex Greenwood is also out after picking up a small injury during last Sunday’s outing for Manchester City. Youngsters Park, Maya Le Tissier and Katie Robinson will make their senior England debuts if they feature on Friday.
England (4-3-3): Earps, Morgan, Bright, Wubben-Moy, Daly; Walsh, Stanway, Toone; James, Russo, Mead.
Japan have a proud recent history in the women’s game, lifting the 2011 World Cup and winning back to back Asian Cup titles in 2014 and 2018. However, they were eliminated at the semi-final stage by eventual champions China during the most recent 2022 tournament.
A number of familiar faces for WSL fans could line up for Japan, with Arsenal’s Mana Iwabuchi, Manchester City’s Yui Hasegawa and West Ham pair Risa Shimizu and Honoka Hayashi all named in their November squad.
England underwhelmed against Czech Republic last time out and injuries have left the Lionesses particularly short defensively. However, they should have enough to edge past Japan.