As the dust settles on international football for another year, it’s the perfect time to reflect on record breaker and history maker Ellen White.
She left it until the final game of 2021 to break Kelly Smith’s all-time goal scoring record for the Lionesses and unsurprisingly did it with a trademark tap in much to the delight of her teammates. Not only did she equal the record with her first goal of the evening but she went on to score two more, capping off an impressive display with a hat-trick.
In a senior international career of 101 appearances spanning over a decade, half of Ellen White’s record-breaking goals have come in the last 4 years (33 appearances), one of which included significantly less fixtures due to the global pandemic (and let’s not forget the 6 goals she scored for Team GB at the Olympics this summer). Not always a prolific goal scorer for England, it was only when she was put into that traditional number 9 role in early 2019 and developed a ruthless edge to her game that we really saw her flourish and become one of Lionesses most reliable players.
Dogged, determined and deadly, White has always been known as one of the hardest working players on the pitch, whatever her position. Chasing down every ball and harassing back-lines, she never stops running. Her pride at playing for her country is evident every time she pulls on the jersey and she continues to inspire those around her. In every press conference, she is humble and reticent to speak about her own performance and achievements; it is always those around her that she insists on praising.
‘We don’t need to talk about it anymore’, she said after breaking the record, ‘I feel very proud to represent my country. We have some incredibly talented players coming through so I feel very lucky to be surrounded by them.’
She may not like the limelight and may want us to move on but it’s only right that she is lauded with praise for the impact she has had on this Lionesses team so far. Her star continues to shine brightly for England and she is only 5 goals away from Wayne Rooney’s record of 53. There is certainly a few more tournaments left in those legs and we have no doubt that when she does decide to hang up her boots, she will do so as England’s all time top-scorer across genders.
However long is left in Ellen White’s illustrious career, there is no doubting her influence on English football and we’re sure we will be seeing fans sharing her trademark celebration for many, many years to come. 🤓