Top 5 Greatest Female Players to Play Over 100 Times for England

Following on from the success of the recent women’s World Cup, in which England made it to the semi-finals for the second tournament in a row, we look to celebrate five women who have helped shape our national game.

Some no longer feature for the Lionesses, but all have earned over 100 caps for their country and are rightfully amongst the most iconic and recognisable female footballers in the country.

Fara Williams

Fara Williams
At just 5ft 5in tall, the diminutive Fara Williams is the most capped England player of all time. In an illustrious career that’s seen her play for Chelsea, Arsenal, Everton and Liverpool she’s also won 170 caps for her country and counting.

Williams has an inspirational story to tell. A Guardian article explains how she was homeless for six years during the early part of her football career. She’s battled adversity to become one of the finest England internationals of her generation.

Kelly Smith

Kelly Smith
A feature by Coral on Britain’s most iconic sports stars describes Kelly Smith as one of England’s most decorated players. She is still England’s top goalscorer with 46 goals in 117 games.

She announced her retirement in January 2017, but during her playing career, she not only featured for Arsenal on three occasions; she also spent time in the US with Boston Breakers, New Jersey Wildcats and Philadelphia Charge.

Smith is a four-time Premier League winner, a UEFA Women’s Cup winner and a three-time FA Cup winner too. She was awarded an MBE in 2008 for her services to the women’s game.

Karen Carney

Karen Carney
Carney is another player who, like Smith, flitted between the US and England for her domestic football. Having made her name with Arsenal, the winger moved over to the States to play for Chicago Red Stars.

She returned to the UK to play for Birmingham City, the club with which she began her career, where she bagged a late equaliser in the 2012 FA Cup Final, as reported by the Independent.

That was her first piece of domestic silverware, but in 2018 she lifted a league and cup double in the blue of Chelsea. She retired after the World Cup in France, after which the BBC wrote a tribute article on her calling her one of English football’s greatest names.

Jill Scott

32-year-old Scott has 143 caps to her name, with 25 goals from midfield for her country. She played the bulk of her career for Everton, before securing a move to Manchester City in 2014.

She scored in the recent World Cup, bagging as the Lionesses beat Norway 3-0. Fellow England midfielder Jordan Nobbs called Scott one of the standout performers in France, in an interview with the Telegraph.

Rachel Yankey

Rachel Yankey
Credit: Wikipedia / Katie Chan | Photo source | (CC BY-SA 4.0)
Yankey is the current manager of the London Bees, but turned out 129 times for her country between 1997 and 2013. She became the first female professional in the UK when she signed for Fulham under Mohamed Al-Fayed in 2000.

She won seven Premier League titles, six with Arsenal and one with Fulham, as well as two WSL titles with the Gunners. She also lifted an unprecedented 11 FA Cups; two of those triumphs came with Fulham, the other nine with Arsenal.


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