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A look at Ellen White’s international career as she closes in on England record
Her 51st and 52nd international goals left her on the verge of beating men’s captain Harry Kane to the record held since 2015 by Wayne Rooney.
Ellen White’s brace against Norway on Monday took her within one of the all-time England goalscoring record.
Her 51st and 52nd international goals left her on the verge of beating men’s captain Harry Kane to the record held since 2015 by Wayne Rooney, who finished his career with 53.
Here, the PA news agency looks at White’s international career.
White stormed past Kelly Smith’s Lionesses record of 46 goals earlier this year with a run of 22 in 24 games – no mean feat for a player who admits she is “screaming” inside when faced with a sight of goal.
She told England team-mate Jill Scott’s Coffee Club podcast in April: “You can probably see how excited I am when I score. I always look quite shocked, which I am – you want to be in my head when I’m near a goal, I am screaming in my head.”
Having scored on her debut against Austria in 2010, White notched 17 goals in her first 26 caps to the end of 2013 before a spell out of the team and a goal drought.
Her goals in back-to-back European Championship qualifiers against Serbia in June 2016 were her first for England in nearly three years but sparked a major return to form.
White netted six times as England reached a second-consecutive World Cup semi-final in 2019 and had a potentially-crucial seventh disallowed by VAR in that loss to the United States.
Her prolific form continued through the 2020 SheBelieves Cup and the ongoing World Cup qualifiers, where she has 10 goals in eight appearances including a hat-trick against Latvia and doubles against North Macedonia and Luxembourg.
She then went four international appearances without scoring but ended that run in style as Norway were dispatched 8-0 in a breathtaking display, and her next goal will bring her alongside Rooney’s tally.
While not part of her England total, she also scored six goals for Great Britain at the Tokyo Olympics and two more in a warm-up friendly.
Record looms large
Rooney scored 53 England goals, with White now looking sure to beat Kane to that landmark as Sarina Wiegman’s side are assured of at least two more games at Euro 2022, and up to four, before the men’s side play again.
White’s 50th goal came against North Macedonia in her 105th cap, two fewer than Rooney took to reach the landmark, and she now has 52 in 110 – exactly on pace with Rooney, scored against Australia in his 110th cap. He added one more in his ensuing 10 appearances, in the stunning Euro 2016 defeat to Iceland.
The humble White told ITV Sport after her 50th goal, which moved her ahead of Kane and Sir Bobby Charlton and behind only Rooney: “It’s an incredible feeling to be among those amazing players, it’s really lovely.”
She may soon have to get used to seeing her name at the top of the illustrious list.