England Women's player ratings vs Spain: Lucy Bronze blunder blows Lionesses' chances of World Cup final glory

Lucy Bronze England Women 2023
The Barcelona defender had to watch many of her club-mates celebrate glory instead after a poor error in the first half allowed Olga Carmona to score

Olga Carmona's strike went down in history on Sunday as the goal that delivered Spain their first Women's World Cup title, the Real Madrid star breaking England hearts after profiting from a mistake from Barcelona's Lucy Bronze as La Roja beat the Lionesses 1-0 at Stadium Australia.

England had chances before that, with Lauren Hemp most notably hitting the bar, but Bronze lost the ball in the middle of the park before half-time and Ona Batlle's clever switch of play over to her vacated right side allowed Spain to capitalise on the space left, Carmona firing across Mary Earps to find the bottom corner.

Spain could've doubled their lead was it not for Earps saving Jennifer Hermoso's penalty, and though that raised the roof in Sydney with so many England fans in attendance, the closest the Lionesses came to levelling the scores was when Lauren James' effort was tipped over by Cata Coll.

The European champions might've defeated Spain on their way to Euros glory last year, but La Roja got their revenge in the sweetest way on Sunday as they became champions of the world.

GOAL rates England's players from Stadium Australia...

  1. Goalkeeper & Defence
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    Goalkeeper & Defence

    Mary Earps (8/10):

    Penalty save was superb, as was her stop to deny Redondo from close range in the first half.

    Jess Carter (7/10):

    Defensively solid, again, and did well to adapt to a change of position at half-time when England moved to a back four. Huge block to deny Hermoso in the second half.

    Millie Bright (6/10):

    Positioned herself well to deal with Paralluelo's pace.

    Alex Greenwood (6/10):

    Stood up tall at the back and was excellent in possession.

  2. Midfield
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    Lucy Bronze (4/10):

    Her mistake in the middle of the park led to the first goal and she never seemed to recover from that.

    Keira Walsh (6/10):

    Kept the ball well and scrapped well to thwart Spain.

    Georgia Stanway (7/10):

    Battled well in midfield and covered well for the centre-backs when they needed it, too.

    Ella Toone (6/10):

    Did her defensive work well and set up Hemp nicely for her shot off the bar.

    Rachel Daly (5/10):

    Had a tough time defensively, always outnumbered, but did create when she got forward. Came off at half-time.

  3. Attack
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    Alessia Russo (5/10):

    Did what she could to create for others but lacked the pace to exploit Spain in transition. Replaced at half-time.

    Lauren Hemp (7/10):

    Was a real nuisance with her pace and directness. Looked the most likely to score for England, even hitting the bar.

  4. Subs & Manager
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    Subs & Manager

    Lauren James (6/10):

    Replaced Russo at the break. Forced Coll into a great save but didn't showcase her magic as much as usual.

    Chloe Kelly (7/10):

    Came on for Daly at half-time and was immediately England's best outlet down the right. Made a real impact.

    Beth England (N/A):

    Introduced late on, without much time to make an impact.

    Sarina Wiegman (7/10):

    Hard to disagree with Wiegman's decisions despite the result. Game plan was strong early on but Spain grew into the game and targeted England's wing-backs well. Wiegman changed the system at half-time to counter this and was positive with her substitutions, but England just couldn't create much in the second half, having not taken their chances in the first.