England 1-1 Brazil: Lionesses continue to flip the script with shootout win over Brazil

England Lionesses made it three trophies in under a year after defeating Brazil in an exhilarating penalty shoot in front of 83,132 fans at Wembley Stadium.

Ella Toone of England celebrates after scoring the team’s first goal during the Women´s Finalissima 2023.Ella Toone of England celebrates after scoring the team’s first goal during the Women´s Finalissima 2023.
Ella Toone of England celebrates after scoring the team’s first goal during the Women´s Finalissima 2023.

It looked like Ella Toone’s 23rd minute strike would be enough after some resolute England defending, however, a 93rd minute goal from Brazil’s Andressa Alves meant they had to do it the hard way to lift another trophy under the guidance of Sarina Wiegman.

There were few surprises in the head coach’s team with Alex Greenwood replacing the injured Millie Bright in defence and Chelsea’s Jess Carter given the nod ahead of Manchester United’s Maya Le Tissier at full back. Alessia Russo was prefered to Rachel Daly in attack as the Dutch head coach gave fans the clearest hint yet of how her World Cup starting XI may look.

A raucous Wembley crowd saw the Lionesses take charge of the opening stages of the clash with Russo is particular causing issues for the Brazilian back line with her pace and power. However, the first goal of the game almost came from the unlikely source of Lucy Bronze, who’s zinger from the edge of area stung the palms of Letícia Izidoro.

Brazil would soon have a chance of their own though when they fashioned a neat break which allowed Geyse a sight at goal but her curling effort would sail wide via a deflection from Carter, much to the relief of Mary Earps.

However, it wouldn’t be long until England took a deserved lead thanks a wonderful team goal. One touch play between Leah Williamson, Bronze and Lauren James opened up the Brazilian defence with ease and allowed Toone to place home from close range - the goal would have Wiegman purring on the sidelines as she could be seen screaming “what a goal” on TV replays - and the fans certainly agreed!

James would then slam home an excellent second for the Lionesses as England continued to dominate before it was pulled back for an offisde - and replays showed there could be little argument. The Chelsea winger would once again terrorize the Brazilian backline shortly afterwards but Lauren Hemp couldn’t quite get enough power on her header to put England two up.

Early in the second period, the away side almost caught the Lionesses cold through Alves , however, Earps was more than equal to the drive. The chance handed Brazil the initivative after a quiet first half and they once again tested Earps with a low drive from the edge of the area shortly afterwards.

And they would hit the bar on the hour mark when Toone was dispossed too easily, allowing Geyse to fire a thunderbolt at the England goal. Earps would get a hand to it but could only tip it onto the bar as the opposition grew into the game. England would regain control of the match though shortly afterwards and a trademark long range effort from Georgia Stanway almost put the game to bed with 25 minutes to play.

Chloe Kelly would be introduced alongside Daly with 15 minutes to play as England looked to close out the game and the latter almost thought she had sealed it seconds after coming on as she raced through on goal only to blaze over - thank fully the offside flag would save her blushes.

Then, in 93rd minute, Brazil would eventually find their deserved equaliser with one of the final kick’s off the game after the England defence failed to clear their lines and allowed Alves to blast home from three yards out to force penalties.

Successful penalties from Georgia Stanway, Rachel Daly and Alex Greenwood combined with some Earps heroics the shootout were enough as England won a dramatic shoot.

It was nervy in the end but, much like they did at last year’s Euro 2022 final, Wiegman’s England side continue to rip up the script by having the nerve to win a penalty shoot out and lift yet another trophy - and few would against England adding a fourth piece of silverware in Australia and New Zealand this July.

Player ratings

Mary Earps: Didn’t have to deal with much but what she did have to deal with she did with minimal fuss - up until that 93rd minute equaliser. But - tonight’s hero. 8/10.

Lucy Bronze: Great on the overlap during the opening period and played a huge part in England’s opener. 7/10.

Jess Carter: Nothing flashy but the versatile defender was calm in position and solid in defence. Her ability to play across the back line will be seen as a huge positive by Wiegman. 6/10.

Leah Williamson: Started multiple attacks from centre back and was solid as a rock at the back. What a player she is for England. 8/10.

Alex Greenwood: An experienced and calm head. Her composure was important as Brazil pushed to get back into the game in the second period. 7/10.

Keira Walsh: Standard performance from the Barcelona midfielder. Composed, calm and classy. 7/10.

Georgia Stanway: A quiet night from the Bayern midfielder, but kept the game ticking over in the centre of midfield as Brazil pushed on in the earl stages of the second half. 6/10.

Lauren James: Always busy and seemed to have the Brazilian defence worried every time she ran at them. Growing in stature with every game and her importance to the Lionesses is growing. 8/10.

Lauren Hemp: Lively first half but far more reserved in the second as Brazil pushed forward. 6/10.

Ella Toone: Got her goal and is developing wonderfully in the number 10 role with Fran Kirby still missing. Quiet second period but will be happy with her overall performance. 7/10.

Alessia Russo: Caused problems for the Brazil defence from the off with her pace and power and gave England a great outball in the second 45. 7/10.


Chloe Kelly (for James 74): Brought much needed energy as England saw the game out against Brazil. 6/10.

Rachel Daly (for Russo 74): As above, Daly gave Brazil something to think about. 6/10.

Katie Robinson (for Hemp 86): A late sub.

Player of the match

Leah Williamson

The captain just edges Lauren James to our player of the match after an outstanding display both offensively and defensively. A fantastic leader.