The Football League Paper - - WOMEN'S FOOTBALL WEEKLY -

HE­LEN WARD The Read­ing and Wales in­ter­na­tional striker chooses her favourite XI, made up from play­ers she played with in her football ca­reer.


Marie Houri­han – Chelsea I have played with Marie since I was about 15. She is one of the hard­est­work­ing play­ers that I have had the plea­sure of work­ing with. She’s had a lot of set­backs in her ca­reer in terms of in­juries but she al­ways comes back fight­ing and it proves how good she is.


Loren Dykes – Bristol Academy I have played with Loren for Wales and she orig­i­nally started as a winger. She gets up the pitch bril­liantly and de­fends well. She is a great player but you can tell she wants to get for­ward!


Claire Raf­ferty – Chelsea Claire proved how good a player she was at the World Cup. She is great in de­fence and at­tack, and her best as­set is the at­tack­ing threat she poses – it’s like hav­ing another winger at times. She is a great fighter as well, she never gives up.


Kylie Davis – Read­ing Kylie is un­be­liev­able. Peo­ple think she is not tall enough as a cen­tre-back but she proves time and again that she is a great de­fender. She puts her en­tire body on the line for what­ever team she is play­ing for. She would also prob­a­bly be my cap­tain as she is such a hard worker.

Ciara Grant – Re­tired I played with Ciara at Ar­se­nal and she made de­fend­ing look ef­fort­less. She won ev­ery­thing in the air. She may not have had as much pace as peo­ple would like to see but she was great with her po­si­tional work and lead­er­ship.


Jess Fishlock – Seat­tle Reign Jess’ record speaks for it­self. She will find ways of cre­at­ing chances and scor­ing goals, she is a good run­ner and will make things hap­pen in a game no mat­ter what. Kim Lit­tle – Seat­tle Reign Kim and Jess form a midfielder part­ner­ship for Seat­tle so they can for my team! Kim is fan­tas­tic on the ball and she can cer­tainly fin­ish when given the chance. I would say she is one of the best play­ers in the world at the mo­ment.


Natasha Hard­ing – Manch­ester City Tash has im­proved mas­sively. She works ex­tremely hard in ev­ery as­pect of her game. She has re­cently signed with one of the big­gest teams so it shows how highly she is val­ued in the game and how tal­ented she is.


Rachel Yankey – Ar­se­nal Rachel is able to pass the ball for fun and she whips in crosses dur­ing games like no one else and works ex­tremely hard. I think the longevity of her ca­reer is a tes­ta­ment to her. She is one of the lead­ers in women’s football as she has been there since the start. The way she is with other play­ers and the fans is great; she is so hum­ble given how great she is.


Ellen Maggs – Re­tired I played with Ellen at Wat­ford. The amount of goals she scored and put on for me was in­cred­i­ble. She had great move­ment and that made my two sea­sons along­side her re­ally en­joy­able. She is some­thing else; she didn’t have as long as a ca­reer as she could have but she was phe­nom­e­nal.

Kelly Smith – Ar­se­nal I didn’t play with Kelly for long at Ar­se­nal but it was a plea­sure. The amount of times she looks like she is in trou­ble when, ac­tu­ally, she isn’t speaks for it­self. She is an amaz­ing player and an amaz­ing tal­ent.

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