Bright suffers injury ahead of key England fixtures

ENGLAND captain Millie Bright has been forced to withdraw from the squad for the Lionesses’ upcoming UEFA Nations League fixtures against the Netherlands and Scotland.

The Chelsea defender will miss the crunch games due to a knee injury and has been replaced in the squad by Manchester United’s uncapped defender Millie Turner.

To progress to the Nations League finals next year, England will realistically have to win both of those games, and the loss of their captain will undoubtedly be a major blow.

Team GB’s hopes of qualification for the 2024 Olympics in Paris also hinge on the Lionesses reaching the Nations League finals.

Bright has been serving as England’s captain in the absence of Arsenal’s Leah Williamson, who is also injured.

The 30-year-old took the armband for the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand in 2023 and helped England reach the final, where they were beaten 1-0 by Spain.

England currently trail the Netherlands by three points and are a point behind Belgium too, having suffered a surprise 3-2 defeat to the Belgians in Group A1.

Turner, her replacement in the squad, has been capped at both under-19 and under-23 level and has been called up by the senior team, but she is yet to make her full debut for the Lionesses.