England women vs Denmark player ratings: Lionesses rely on James’ wonder-strike

England women recorded their second 1-0 win in the 2023 World Cup. Once again, the Lionesses lacked cutting edge and were far from convincing but they did enough to edge Denmark. An early goal from James proved enough with the rest of the game evenly matches. England defended well all game. Here are our England women vs Denmark player ratings and also our Player of the Match.

England vs Denmark player ratings
Photo by Icon sport
  • James put England in front very early on.
  • Late in the opening period, the Lionesses lost the influential Walsh due to a nasty injury and with this, they lost the initiative too.
  • Denmark should have found a deserved equaliser late on when England were barely hanging on. The woodwork helped the Lionesses too when denying Vangsgaard.

The Lionesses Player Ratings: James helps the Lionesses roar

GK Mary Earps 7/10 – Made 4 vital saves. Played well and never panicked even when the pressure on her goal became constant late on.

DF Lucy Bronze 5/10 – Kept venturing forward without need. Lost the ball in crucial areas numerous times too. Overall, a poor display.

DF Alex Greenwood 6/10 – Solid but far from excellent. Late on had serious problems dealing with the Danish threat.

DF Millie Bright 6/10 – Played better than in the first game. Still, looked shaky when put under pressure though. Her long absence is still showing as she looked rusty at times.

DF Rachel Daly 8/10 – Produced the assist for the goal that won the match. Defensively played very well too.

MF Georgia Stanway 7/10 – Played well all match. Her passing was excellent but had to be criticised for not helping much defensively when the Lionesses needed it late on.

MF Keira Walsh 6/10 Started well but after just over 30 minutes had to be stretched off injured.

MF Ella Toone 6/10 – Lost too many 50-50 balls. Didn’t pass the ball very well either.

FW Chloe Kelly 5/10 – Looked lively only very early on. Never did much past the half-hour mark. Very quiet all of the second half.

FW Alessia Russo 5/10 – Used her body well outside the box to protect the ball. Had zero impact inside the penalty area and was never on time to attack several inviting crosses. Didn’t look like scoring.

FW Lauren James 8/10 – The most influential player on the pitch. Scored early and her confidence grew after that. All match she was the woman taking the battle to the Danish defenders and more often than not James was prevailing.


MF Laura Coombs 6/10 – Came on in place of the injured Welsh and did well enough. Didn’t impact the game that much though.

The other 2 substitutes were made inside the final 15 minutes, so there was no time for those players to be ranked.

Denmark Player Ratings: Should Vangsgaard have come on earlier?

GK Lene Christensen 6/10 – Despite conceding early she remained confident for the rest of the game. Made 3 strong saves as the match progressed.

DF Rikke Sevecke 4/10 – Outplayed by James and never found a way to slow down the England winger.

DF Simone Boye 6/10 – She was late helping teammates a few times. Also, gave away possession cheaply on 5 occasions. Dominant in the air though.

DF Stine Ballisager 6/10 – Struggled early on but got better as the match progressed. Got tired in the second half.

DF Katrina Veje 5/10 – Not good defensively and not very good offensively either. Her crosses kept flying wayward. Her forays forward exposed her zone for attacking and only sloppiness on England’s part helped her on numerous occasions.

MF Josephine Hasbo 6/10 – Very energetic and aggressive. Didn’t pass the ball very well though.

MF Karen Holmgaard 7/10 – Dominant in the middle of the park. Very strong both defensively and with her forward passes.

MF Janni Thomsen 7/10 – Caused the main problems for England in the first half. Also, went close to scoring herself twice after the interval. Dominated in her zone all match.

MF Kathrine Kuhl 6/10 – Sloppy in possession. Her inaccurate passes ruined several promising attacks for the Danes.

MF Rikke Marie Madsen 5/10 – Struggled to impact the game. Got quieter and quieter as the game progressed.

FW Paernille Harder 7/10 – Led the line well. Had 2 big chances and really should have scored. Engaged both of England’s centre-backs with her purposeful runs.


All 4 substitutes were made inside the final 15 minutes, so there was no time for those players to be ranked. However, Vangsgaard’s late introduction saw her hit the post and test the keeper so in a very short space of tie she had the 2 best chances for the Danes.

Player of the Match: Lauren James

England’s winger James scored the only goal of the game very early on. As it turned this proved the only difference between the teams in an otherwise very evenly matched contest. James dominated down the left channel with 11 of England’s 15 dangerous attacks in this game coming from the left. That’s why our choice for Player of the Match has to be Lauren James.

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