Bronze starts for England in new position

Lucy Bronze in action for England.
Lucy Bronze in action for England.

Alnwick’s Lucy Bronze is in the starting line-up for England’s World Cup opener against France, but in an unfamiliar position on the left of a five-woman midfield.

The 23-year-old usually plays as a defender, having started her most recent games for Manchester City at right-back. However, she has played across the back four for England and previous club Liverpool Ladies and was expected to be used by head coach Mark Sampson primarily as a centre-back.

It will be a tough test for the whole England team against a French side ranked third in the world, three places above Sampson’s side.

And the Lionesses don’t have a good tournament record against tonight’s opposition, having lost 3-0 in Euro 2013 and going out on penalties in the quarter-finals at the 2011 World Cup.

France v England is live on BBC Two and kicks off at 6pm.