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Friday 04 Jun 2021
Shiels chooses 22-strong panel for training camp and friendly against Scotland

Northern Ireland senior women’s team manager Kenny Shiels has named a 22-strong squad for next week’s friendly against Scotland.

His panel is the usual blend of youth and experience and features one newcomer, young Cliftonville Ladies midfielder Fi Morgan, who makes the step up from the U19s having played for the U17s previously.

And returning to the panel after not featuring in the last squad are Lisburn Rangers defender Ella Haughey, Glentoran Women forwards Casey Howe and Lauren Wade plus Glentoran Women midfielder Joely Andrews.

Experienced defender Ashley Hutton is not available for the camp after rupturing an anterior cruciate ligament in her knee while playing for Linfield Ladies last week, while Everton Women striker Simone Magill is also unavailable. 

And Shiels is still without a handful of players who are recovering from long term injuries, including Rachel Furness, Demi Vance, Megan Bell, Caragh Hamilton and Abbie Magee.

The challenge match against Scotland is being staged at Seaview next Thursday (10 June) with a 7pm kick-off. The game will be played in front of supporters.

The camp and game marks the start of preparations for Northern Ireland’s FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 qualification campaign, which begins with two home games in September.

Scotland are currently ranked 23rd in the world, while Northern Ireland are 48th, although they are expected to rise up the FIFA listings given their Women’s Euro 2022 play-off success against Ukraine in April. 

Northern Ireland’s opening encounter in six-team Group D in the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 qualifiers will be a home game against Luxembourg on 17 September, followed by another home match against Latvia on 21 September.

Goalkeepers – Jackie Burns (Glentoran Women), Becky Flaherty (Blackburn Rovers Women). 

Defenders – Julie Nelson (Crusaders Strikers), Rebecca McKenna (Linfield Ladies), Rebecca Holloway (Birmingham City Women), Laura Rafferty (unattached), Toni-Leigh Finnegan (Cliftonville Ladies), Ella Haughey (Lisburn Rangers). 

Midfielders – Marissa Callaghan, Louise McDaniel and Fi Morgan (all Cliftonville Ladies), Nadene Caldwell, Joely Andrews and Sam Kelly (all Glentoran Women), Chloe McCarron (unattached), Sarah McFadden (Durham Women), Ciara Watling (unattached).

Forwards – Kerry Beattie, Casey Howe and Lauren Wade (all Glentoran Women), Kirsty McGuinness (Cliftonville Ladies), Emily Wilson (Crusaders Strikers).