Tessel Middag picks her Dream Team!
Netherlands international Tessel Middag selects the strongest XI from her illustrious career…
GK: Karen Bardsley
I’ve been fortunate enough to play with some great goalkeepers. I’m finding it hard to pick but I’m going to go with Karen Bardsley from Manchester City. Her reactions on the goal-line are some of the best I’ve ever seen.
RB: Lucy Bronze
I’ve played with and against Lucy and she is an incredible player. She’s with Lyon now and, although she’s a defender, it sometimes feels like she’s a second right-winger too. She is a brilliant footballer who also had a fantastic World Cup.
CB: Stefanie van der Gragt
Stefanie plays for Barcelona and I played with her for the first time when I was 14. We’ve known each other for a very long time and, although she’s had some injuries, she has always done a great job in defence.
CB: Gilly Flaherty
Gilly is the perfect example of what a captain should be, both on and off the pitch. She is a natural leader and she is a very consistent player too. An excellent centre-back.
CB: Steph Houghton
I have to include Steph. Off the pitch, Steph has not had the easiest time, with her husband Stephen Darby being diagnosed with motor neurone disease, but the way she’s conducted herself and continued playing is a real inspiration to me.
LB: Demi Stokes
Demi is very focused, never makes mistakes, and is a very capable defender. I never saw Demi lose the ball and she is one of the hardest-working left-backs I’ve ever seen.
CM: Cho So-hyun
I will always remember Cho scoring the winning penalty in that FA Cup Semi-Final shoot-out win over Reading last season, taking us to the Final, and smiling the whole time!
CM: Jill Scott
I really enjoyed playing with Jill. She’s very tall and she is a real box-to-box player. She is a really thin player but deceptively strong and a really talented midfielder.
CM: Daniëlle van de Donk
Arsenal call her ‘DVD’ but we call her ‘Dan’, and she is one of the smartest players I’ve played with. She is very intelligent and a joy to share the pitch with.
CF: Nikita Parris
Nikita is so quick! She has a lot of energy and brings so much pace. You will always hear her shouting and she always gets something extra out of her teammates.
ST: Vivianne Miedema
Miedema was the top scorer in the league last season. She joined us with Netherlands at 18 and she started scoring goals immediately. She’s already our top goalscorer and she’s only 23!