England players who have been sent off in World Cup knockout games

By Sports Desk August 07, 2023

Lauren James became the fourth England player to be sent off in a World Cup knockout match after her red card against Nigeria.

The 21-year-old suffered the same fate as David Beckham, Wayne Rooney and Millie Bright on the world stage.

Here, the PA news agency looks back at those who saw red in white.

David Beckham v Argentina, 1998

England were drawing 2-2 with their fierce rivals from South America when, two minutes after half-time, Beckham was shoved to the ground by Argentina henchman Diego Simeone.

As he was lying face down on the pitch, the Manchester United midfielder petulantly swung his right leg at the perpetrator.

It was hardly the crime of the century but it occurred right in front of referee Kim Morten Nielsen, who booked Simeone before swapping cards and giving Beckham his marching orders.

The 10 players of England managed to hold out for a 2-2 draw but lost on penalties, with Beckham made the scapegoat for their exit in the last 16.

Wayne Rooney v Portugal, 2006

Rooney was tussling for the ball with Ricardo Carvalho when he left the sole of his boot in the groin of the Portugal defender.

Cristiano Ronaldo, Rooney’s then-Manchester United team-mate, led the protests towards referee Horacio Marcelo Elizondo, who initially looked set to take no further action after awarding a free-kick.

Rooney shoved Ronaldo away before Elizondo brandished the red card, prompting the famous wink towards the bench from the Portugal superstar.

Again, England held out for more than half an hour a player down to force penalties after a goalless draw. And again, they lost the shoot-out to exit in the quarter-finals.

Millie Bright v USA, 2019

England were 2-1 down, had seen a goal disallowed and missed a penalty when, in the 86th minute, centre-half Bright made another heavy challenge on USA goalscorer Alex Morgan.

Having already been booked for a crunching tackle on the striker in the first half, Bright was shown a second yellow to become the first woman to be sent off for England at a World Cup.

It was a deflating semi-final exit for the Lionesses, while the USA went on to lift the trophy in France, with England eventually finishing fourth.

Lauren James v Nigeria, 2023

There were echoes of Beckham and Rooney when England’s brightest young star, Chelsea forward James, trod on the back of Nigeria’s Michelle Alozie.

James was initially booked for the 87th-minute incident but the replays were not pretty and, after a VAR review, it was upgraded to a red card.

England held out through extra time for a goalless draw and, for a change, won the penalty shoot-out to go through to the quarter-finals.

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    The Argentina international saved two penalties in the 4-3 quarter-final shootout victory over Lille, but earned a yellow card for his trademark gamesmanship and baiting the home crowd.

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    However, after also picking up a booking in the first leg against Lille, he will now miss the semi-final first leg with the Greek side on May 2 for three yellows on the totting-up process.

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    “To say something about this is when he’s being successful individually and collectively with his club here at Aston Villa and his national team,” boss Unai Emery said.

    “He’s being successful with Argentina, he’s being successful and progressively getting better here with Aston Villa.

    “And individually he’s being successful because he’s saving a lot of matches as a goalkeeper.

    “Of course, he’s one of the best goalkeepers in the world – the first, the second, the third.

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    Villa will have a quick turnaround after playing 120 minutes in northern France on Thursday, with Bournemouth’s visit to Villa Park on Sunday.

    Emery will assess his side after Saturday’s training session to see how they recover, with Nicolo Zaniolo going off injured in the first half against Lille.

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    “We would want to encourage as many of the Premier League clubs to participate in this Under-17 competition. As it is now, most of the clubs will be participating,” Ricketts said.

    “We thought that it was very important that we capture those that are probably on the verge of getting out of high school and have them in a formal setting so that they can make a transition from U-17s to U20s and, ultimately, the senior set up,” he added.

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    The agonising penalty shoot-out defeat by Real ended City’s hopes of winning the treble for a second season in succession.

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