England’s Lauren James is undoubtedly one the top young stars at the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
James, 21, is a star for the Chelsea FC women’s team and the sister of Chelsea men’s star Reece James.
Her dynamic mix of physical skill and impressive technique makes her one of the world’s top prospects and a player who could one day be the best women’s player in the world.
James announced herself to the world with a fantastic goal in England’s 1-0 win over Denmark in the second game of the group stage.
WHAT A STATEMENT 🏴
21-year-old Chelsea forward Lauren James puts England up 1-0! pic.twitter.com/126SEFmFjm
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) July 28, 2023
She then followed it up with a breathtaking performance against China, scoring two more incredible goals and notching two assists in a 6-1 victory.
A truly lovely first-time finish from Lauren James to make it three for England 🏴 pic.twitter.com/TDHAVB1cKF
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) August 1, 2023
LAUREN JAMES. AGAIN.
— B/R Football (@brfootball) August 1, 2023
With the knockout rounds still to play and England as one of the World Cup favorites, James was making a serious push to win the Golden Ball as the tournament’s best player.
But that push got derailed on Monday.
The Lionesses squared off against Nigeria in the round of 16 and were heavy favorites. But it was the Super Falcons who dominated much of the match, despite not being able to find a goal.
In the 87th minute, with extra time approaching, James made her mark on the match. Though it wasn’t in the way you’d expect.
The England star was shown a red card after a blatant stomp on the ribs of Nigeria’s Michelle Alozie.
Lauren James is seeing red and will be sent off 🟥
The Lionesses are now down to 10 players! pic.twitter.com/5xatvleQQj
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) August 7, 2023
The disgusting act put the Lionesses a player down and put their World Cup lives in peril. Soccer fans around the world were none too pleased with the stomp.
Absolutely shocking behavior from Lauren James. This is clear as day and she thought she could get away with it as well.
This sort of red card should be more than just a game suspension. Stepping on an opponent is wildly distasteful.
Shame on her. pic.twitter.com/yFy3OxturY
— EiF (@EiFSoccer) August 7, 2023
So disappointing with Lauren James. She deserve that red card. https://t.co/mLjIqa8HKO
— 🐰🐺🦋 (@ainGEEKY) August 7, 2023
I knew there’s a reason why I didn’t like her https://t.co/hQvauAduHF
— ❦ ❀ 🅒🅘🅝🅓🅨 ❀ ❦ (@Cindyxo27) August 7, 2023
— Louise C (@LouiseColes13) August 7, 2023
Thankfully for James, England survived and won the match in penalty kicks. But she’ll still be suspended for her next match against either Colombia or Jamaica.
James made her case as one of the world’s top players. But should England go out in the quarterfinals, she’ll have a lot of explaining to do.