Spain is ready to go: It released its lineup almost two hours before kickoff, and the only change is notable. But so is England: It wasn’t far behind.
Part of that might be that neither team had any surprises in their lineups. The most notable choices, in fact, are two players who are NOT starting.
England’s team is unchanged from the semifinals, meaning Lauren James, a starter who missed the last two games because of a red-card suspension for stamping on a Nigerian opponent in the round of 16, will be on the bench to start. But so will Alexia Putellas of Spain, the reigning Ballon d’Or winner as world player of the year. She sits after a disappointing semifinal in favor of the tournament’s breakout Spanish star, Salma Paralluelo.
She slots in up front in its starting XI:
Cata Coll; Olga Carmona, Laia Codina, Irene Paredes, Ona Batlle; Jenni Hermoso, Teresa Abelleira, Aitana Bonmatí; Mariona Caldentey, Salma Paralluelo, Alba Redondo.
England is visual form here, with outside backs Rachel Daly and Lucy Bronze listed as midfielders in a 3-5-2:
Mary Earps; Jess Carter, Millie Bright, Alex Greenwood; Lucy Bronze, Georgia Stanway, Keira Walsh, Ella Toone, Rachel Daly; Lauren Hemp, Alessia Russo.