Women's World Cup - England squad announced
Powell unveiled her selection at London’s Somerset House on Friday afternoon and there was a place for inspirational captain Faye White, despite her recent struggles with a knee injury.
Everton goalkeeper Rachel Brown, first choice at the World Cup in China in 2007, was also included despite fitness concerns but there was no place in the squad for Everton’s Lindsay Johnson or the experienced Sue Smith.
“It was a very challenging decision, but a challenging decision in a positive way,” Powell said.
“The standard of top-level women’s football in this country has definitely improved and we are in a better place now in terms of players than we have ever been.
“I have got a really talented bunch of players to choose from and this choice has been made even more difficult in recent times by the emergence of some of the younger players who have come to the fore and have done really well. They deserve an opportunity to be part of something really great, which is what this World Cup will be.”
Sophie Bradley, Dunia Susi, Claire Rafferty, Steph Houghton and Ellen White will be playing in a senior international tournament for the first time but the squad boasts a total of over 1,000 caps and no less than 13 players travelled for the finals in China four years ago, as England were knocked out in the quarter-finals.
Goalkeepers: Karen Bardsley (New Jersey Sky Blue), Rachel Brown (Everton), Siobhan Chamberlain (Bristol Academy)
Defenders: Sophie Bradley (Lincoln Ladies), Claire Rafferty (Chelsea), Alex Scott (Boston Breakers), Casey Stoney (Lincoln Ladies), Dunia Susi (Birmingham City), Rachel Unitt (Everton), Faye White (Arsenal)
Midfielders: Anita Asante (New Jersey Sky Blue), Laura Bassett (Birmingham City), Jess Clarke (Lincoln Ladies), Steph Houghton (Arsenal), Jill Scott (Everton), Fara Williams (Everton), Rachel Yankey (Arsenal)
Forwards: Eniola Aluko (New Jersey Sky Blue), Karen Carney (Birmingham City), Kelly Smith (Boston Breakers), Ellen White (Arsenal)