England vs Spain: BetUK's Women’s World Cup final stat-pack

England World Cup Winner

England’s Lionesses are on the cusp of history.

A stunning win over co-hosts Australia in the semi-finals has propelled Sarina Wiegman’s side into the promised land. If they beat Spain, they would become the fifth team in history to win both the European Championship and the World Cup back-to-back.

The pantheon of great sides to land this achievement includes the men’s national sides of West Germany (1972 Euros, 1974 World Cup), France (1998 World Cup, 2000 Euros), and Spain (2008 and 2012 Euros and the 2010 World Cup) as well as Germany Women (three consecutive European championships and back-to-back World Cups between 2001 and 2009).

Can they get it over the line? We take a look at their journey so far and whether they have what it takes to win it with our Women’s World Cup final stat-pack…

Route to the final

England didn’t begin the tournament looking like potential finalists.

Wiegman’s side struggled in their opening game against Haiti, requiring a penalty to topple the 53rd-ranked side, while a sixth-minute strike from Lauren James was all that separated them from Denmark on matchday two.

Everything finally clicked during the final game of the group stages — a 6-1 domination over China. However, despite differing performances, one thing remained consistent throughout the opening portion of the tournament for England: possession.

They averaged over 73% of it per game and accompanied that dominance with the second-highest pass completion percentage (81.9%) behind fellow finalists Spain.

The Lionesses also encountered turbulence in the knockout stages, after a 87th-minute red card to James left them hanging on for a 0-0 draw and requiring a penalty shootout to knock out Nigeria. This marked England’s first ever penalty shootout victory at a Women’s World Cup.

Victories over both Colombia and Australia followed, with Lauren Hemp and Alessia Russo stealing the headlines with goals in both matches.

Small sample size though tournament football is, both have managed to outperform their xG of 2.2 by registering three each throughout the competition. Back either of them to find the net for a third consecutive game with BetUK here.

As for Spain, they have navigated their way to the final with an attack that few have been able to stop, only failing to score in one game throughout the tournament.

Since the group stages, Spain have become the highest scorers at the tournament with 16 goals and rank second in goals per 90 minutes (2.53). You can back Spain to register over 2.5 goals in the final at 7/1 with BetUK.

Alongside producing the best offensive output, Spain are also the most accomplished passing side at the Women’s World Cup. They have the highest pass completion at the tournament (82.3%) but more notably they carry the highest xA created in the competition with 13, six more than the next closest team and underlining their threat.

TeamAve possessionExpected Assists

Players to watch

England’s success is built from the back and it begins with Mary Earps.

The Manchester United goalkeeper has been immense for the Lionesses throughout the tournament, keeping a clean sheet in 50% of her matches.

She also lands in the top five for save percentage in the entire World Cup with 87.5%. You can back her to keep a clean sheet in the final with Spain Under 0.5 goals at 2/1.

Beyond Earps, Wiegman has a selection nightmare in midfield between James and Ella Toone. James began the tournament as a shining light, netting three goals in the final two group games to fire England through. She also led the way in goal-creating actions for her nation.

Although in James’ absence, Toone has staked her claim for a starting spot in England’s midfield. After finding the net in the Euro 2021 final and the Finalissima, Toone continued to prove she’s the woman for the big occasion with a stunning strike in the semi-final against Australia.

Spain’s midfield doesn’t hold such questions with Aitana Bonmati, Teresa Abelleira, and Alexia Putellas forming a formidable trio in the middle of the pitch for La Roja.

Abelleira in particular has caught the eye of fans with her pinpoint accurate passing in the final third. She is the tournament leader in expected assisted goals with 2.2, as well as providing the highest number of key passes within the tournament with 23.

The Real Madrid midfielder has been providing for one of the more fruitful frontlines in the tournament — both Jennifer Hermoso and Alba Redondo have both registered three goals each.

But, in the knockout stages, it’s been a youngster off the bench stealing the headlines: Salma Celeste Paralluelo Ayingono.

Barcelona’s 19-year-old forward has scored in consecutive rounds en route to the final for Spain. She usually starts the games on the bench but with her scintillating form she could be a dark horse to net in the final at 17/5 with BetUK.

What we expect

Both of these teams have had to overcome obstacles to reach the final.

Spain had to bounce back from a devastating 4-0 defeat to Japan in the group stages while England had to navigate a mountain of injuries just to make it this far. Wiegman even had to change from her trusted 4-3-3 to a five at the back formation.

Both sides have an eye for goal, though, and have each score in all but one of their games during the entire tournament.

However, the Lionesses are riding the wave of momentum entering the final. With a squad that has slightly more experience in bigger games – not to mention a manager who has already led her team to a European Championship win already – we think England will come out on top.

BetUK Women’s World Cup final tip – England to win and both teams to score @ 23/4

Take Time to Think | | 18+

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