With little over a week until the tournament kicks off, football fans are now counting down the days until the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 tournament gets underway in England.
As the growth of the women’s game continues to snowball, excitement for the competition has been seen a number of games across the tournament have already completely sold out.
The Euro 2022 opener between England and Austria on July 6 is set to break the attendance record for a women’s European Championship opener, with tickets to the game at Old Trafford already selling over 70,000 tickets, while the Wembley final sold out in less than an hour .
One of the most competitive groups at the European Championship will be Group A, with hosts and one of the tournament favourites, England, set to clash with dark horses Norway, while first timers Northern Ireland and 2017 semi-finalists Austria are looking to spoil the party for the home nation.
However, if you’re new to the women’s game and looking to learn more ahead of the tournament, we’ve put together a handy guide to preview the tournament, group by group, which we will be releasing day by day in the run up to the tournament.
So, without further ado, here is our list of each Group A side, including our tips for key player, full squad, tournament odds and loads more.
Euro 2022: Here are 16 of the best players to catch at this summer’s tournament…
The Manchester City winger is one of football’s most exciting young talents, despite being only 21-years-old. She’s a four time winner of the PFA Women’s player of the year and has already tallied close to 100 league appearances in the Women’s Super League.
Hemp offers world-class delivery into the box, blistering pace, trickery and a keen eye for a goal that will ensure every team she faces in Euro 2022 see her as the Lionesses biggest threat.
While not a guaranteed starter at present, the Manchester United talent has all the tools to shine on the big stage and become the name of everybody’s lips come the end of July.
Goalkeepers: Mary Earps (Manchester United), Hannah Hampton (Aston Villa), Ellie Roebuck (Manchester City).
Defenders: Millie Bright (Chelsea), Lucy Bronze (Barcelona), Jess Carter (Chelsea), Rachel Daly (Houston Dash), Alex Greenwood (Manchester City), Demi Stokes (Manchester City), Lotte Wubben-Moy (Arsenal).
Midfielders: Fran Kirby (Chelsea), Jill Scott (Unattached), Georgia Stanway (Bayern Munich), Ella Toone (Manchester United), Keira Walsh (Manchester City), Leah Williamson (Arsenal).
forwards: Beth England (Chelsea), Lauren Hemp (Manchester City), Chloe Kelly (Manchester City), Beth Mead (Arsenal), Nikita Parris (Arsenal), Alessia Russo (Manchester United), Ellen White (Manchester City).
July 6 – England v Austria (Old Trafford, Manchester 8pm)
July 11 – England v Norway (Amex Stadium, Brighton 8pm)
July 15 – England v Northern Ireland (St. Mary’s, Southampton 8pm)
Best ever Euro’s finish: Runners-up 2017
Tournament odds: 4/1 to win Euro 2022
Keyplayer: Ada Hegerberg
It had been a tough couple of years for the 2018 Ballon d’Or winner. Her refusal to play for the national team due to a dispute over the Norwegian Football Federation combined with long-term injury meant the international stage had not been graced with talent for many years, however, her return to fitness – and the Norway squad – at the back end of last season has proven exactly why so many still hold her in such high regard.
The Norwegians have an abundance of talent in their ranks, such as Guro Reiten, but no one can take control of a game quite like Lyon forward Hegerberg, who will be the difference maker for a Norway side seen as dark horses in the tournament.
One to watch: Caroline Graham Hansen
Like the aforementioned Hegerberg, the Barcelona winger is another world class talent that is capable of dismantling some of the world’s best defenses.
Goalkeepers: Guro Pettersen (Valerenga), Sunniva Skoglund (Stabaek), Aurora Mikalsen (Brann).
defenders: Tuva Hansen (Brann), Maren Mjelde (Chelsea), Anja Sonstevold (Inter), Julie Blakstad (Manchester City), Maria Thorisdottir (Manchester United), Synne Skinnes Hansen (Rosenborg), Guro Bergsvand (Brann).
Midfielders: Vilde Boe Risa (Manchester United), Amalie Eikeland (Reading), Ingrid Syrstad Engen (Barcelona), Frida Maanum (Arsenal), Elisabeth Terland (Brann), Guro Reiten (Chelsea), Thea Bjelde (Valerenga).
forwards: Anna Langas Josendal (Rosenborg), Karina Saevik (Avaldsnes), Sophie Roman Haug (Rome), Celin Bizet Ildhusoy (PSG), Caroline Graham Hansen (Barcelona), Ada Hegerberg (Lyon).
July 7 – Norway vs. Northern Ireland (St. Mary’s, Southampton 8pm)
July 11 – Norway v England (Amex Stadium, Brighton 8pm)
July 15 – Austria vs. Norway (Amex Stadium, 8 p.m.)
Best ever Euro’s finish: Winners 1987
Tournament odds: 1/14 to win Euro 2022
Keyplayer: Rachel Furness
The Liverpool midfielder offers plenty of quality, experience and – most importantly – passion for the shirt. The former Sunderland player was crucial to her club side as they lifted the Championship title to secure a place back in the WSL, but she is even more important to her national side, who she has represented for almost two decades.
It’s the Northern Irish team’s first ever major tournament, and while they come into the tournament as a rank outsider, there is an inevitability that ‘Furney’ will have to say at the Euros in one way or another.
The tough tackling defender comes into the tournament on the back of a title winning season at Rangers, and will offer her side quality set-piece deliveries with her wicked left-foot.
Goalkeepers: Jackie Burns (BK Hacken), Becky Flaherty (Brighouse Town), Shannon Turner (Wolverhampton Wanderers)
defenders: Kelsie Burrows (Cliftonville), Rebecca Holloway (Racing Louisville), Ashley Hutton (Linfield), Abbie Magee (Cliftonville), Sarah McFadden (Durham), Rebecca McKenna (Lewes), Julie Nelson (Crusaders Strikers), Laura Rafferty (Southampton), Demi VanceRangers
Midfielders: Nadene Caldwell (Glentoran), Joely Andrews (Glentoran), Chloe McCarron (Glentoran), Marissa Callaghan (Cliftonville), Louise McDaniel (Cliftonville), Rachel Furness (Liverpool)
forwards: Simone Magill (unattached), Caitlin McGuinness (Cliftonville), Kirsty McGuinness (Cliftonville), Lauren Wade (Glentoran), Emily Wilson (Crusaders Strikers)
July 7 – Northern Ireland vs Norway (Amex Stadium, Brighton 8pm)
July 11 – Northern Ireland v Austria (St Mary’s, Southampton 5pm)
July 15 – Northern Ireland v England (St Mary’s, Southampton 8pm)
Best ever Euro’s finish: First time qualified
Tournament odds: 250/1 to win Euro 2022
Forecast: Exit at group stage
Every team needs a potent striker in order to succeed, and with the Hoffenheim forward in their ranks, Austria will back themselves to at least give Norway and England a run for their money in qualifying from the group stages.
Billa’s prolific form at club and international level make her the star all Austrian hopes are pinned on.
One to watch: Sarah Zadrazil
The defensive midfielder plays a vital role for German giants Bayern Munich and equally important to her national side, with her ability to break up play vital to the Austrian set-up.
Goalkeepers: Isabella Kresche (St. Polten), Jasmin Pal (FC Koln), Manuela Zinsberger (Arsenal)
defenders: Celina Degen (FC Koln), Marina Georgieva (Sand), Verena Hanshaw (Eintracht Frankfurt), Katharina Naschenweng (Hoffenheim), Katharina Schiechtl (Werder Bremen), Viktoria Schnaderbeck (Arsenal), Carina Wenninger (Roma), Laura Wienroither (Arsenal)
Midfielders: Barbara Dunst (Eintracht Frankfurt), Jasmin Eder (St. Polten), Laura Feiersinger (Eintracht Frankfurt), Julia Hickelsberger-Fuller (Hoffenheim), Marie-Therese Hobinger (Zurich), Maria Plattner (Turbine Potsdam), Sarah Puntigam (FC Koln ), Sarah Zadrazil (Bayern Munich)
forwards: Nicole Billa (Hoffenheim), Stefanie Enzinger (St Polten), Lisa Kolb (Freiburg), Lisa Makas (Austria Wien)
July 6 – Austria vs England (Old Trafford, Manchester 8pm)
July 11 – Austria vs Northern Ireland (Amex Stadium, Brighton 5pm)
July 15 – Austria vs Norway (Amex Stadium, Brighton 8pm)
Best ever Euro’s finish: Semi-final 2017
Tournament odds: 66/1 to win Euro 2022
Forecast: Exit at group stage