Beth Mead - the future of English women's football
Updated: Apr 10, 2020
24 year old English footballer who plays as a forward for Arsenal and England women's national football team.
Beth Mead is the type of player you can't take your eyes off from, even for a moment. I must admit that I didn't become Beth's fan until about a year ago. I honestly regret all those earlier years when I hadn't followed her career yet.
Beth Mead joined Middlesbrough F.C in 2005. In 2011, at age of 16, she moved to Sunderland. Already in her first season in the club she proved that she is a huge talent. Mead scored 23 goals in the league, and ended the season with 29 goals in all competitions. The following season, she played 28 matches in which she scored … 30 goals. It is worth adding that she was only 17 years old at the time. Next season she scored 15 goals and lead Sunderland to promotion to WSL 1. On 25th of March 2013, in her first match at the top level she scored a goal and also she won the penalty kick for her team . Sunderland won 2-1 over Liverpool. A few months later, on 19th of July 2015, Beth Mead scored a hat-trick against Chelsea. She needed only 18 minutes to complete that hat-trick. What's worth noticing, 2 days before the game Mead had a car accident. During the way back from training, she swerved to avoid a deer, her car rolled over three times. Fortunately, it ended only with fear and a few scratches and bruises. Hardly anyone gave her a chance to play in this match. She not only played, but she also scored 3 goals. A true warrior. She finished the season as league-leading goalscorer with 12 goals in 14 apps. Not so surprising that after such a good season Arsenal became interested in her. The recognition she fully deserved. On 24th of January 2017 Beth Mead signed for Arsenal Ladies. She joined Arsenal at the age of 21. By that time, she had already scored 77 goals in 78 games for her former club - Sunderland. At Arsenal, her role on the pitch changed due to the fact that Arsenal signed Vivanne Miedema. Beth began to play as a winger. As she says, at first it was quite annoying, but she got used to it and began to enjoy it. Her career at Arsenal began brilliantly. Arsenal won the FA WSL Continental Tires Cup. Meado finished the 17/18 season as Arsenal's top goalscorer, with 8 goals in the league. In addition, she was voted Arsenal's player of the season. Beth, who had played in Sunderland as No 9, perfectly adapted to the new role in Arsenal. Her cooperation with Miedema gave Arsenal a huge number of goals. She built a great connection, good relationship on the pitch with the Dutch striker. During the 18/19 season Beth Mead broke the record for most assists in a single season. She ended WSL season with 7 goals, 12 assists and also created more chances than any other Arsenal player. Her importance for Arsenal is therefore invaluable.
Speaking about international career. Beth Mead has represented England at every age level from under-15. She played at the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup in 2014. On 6th of April 2018 she made her debut for the senior England women's national football team. It was a 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup qualification game vs Wales, she came as a substitute. On 4th of September 2018 she started her first match. She scored twice, England won 6-0 over Kazakhstan. At the turn of February and March 2019, England won the SheBelieves Cup, an invitational women's football tournament held in the United States. Beth has scored 2 goals, one of them was a real breathtaking one. A stunner.
How can we describe Beth Mead in one sentence? In my opinion, Beth Mead - a player who only scores beautiful goals. And I think it's not hard to agree with that. Meado has already scored a lot of beautiful goals in her career. But for this I'm going to devote a separate paragraph. Beth Mead is still a bit underrated player. And this is surprising, because at such a young age she is already a player who has everything to become the best in the world. In Sunderland, she was great as No 9, and now at Arsenal as a winger, she still shines. Her great advantage is the fact that she is very confident on the pitch. She is not afraid to take risks. She bravely enters 1 on 1 duels with opponents. She has very strong sense of awareness. It's easy to notice that she knows exactly where her teammates are and where opponents are before she makes any move. Her strong point is also that she looks around and assesses the situation before receiving the ball. We can say, she's already one or two steps ahead of the opponent in her planning. Her technique is also amazing. She dribbles well because of her incredible ball control abilities. I'm very impressed with her technique, she is extremely precise in her passes and crosses. You can see that these perfect delivery from corner kick is the result of many hours of work devoted to this element during training sessions. That's a mentality of a true athlete. It also seems that Arsenal's playing style really suits Mead. The style of play introduced by Montemurro gives players a lot of freedom to move inside and swap flanks. The exchangeability of positions on the pitch is very high. Arsenal operate with players who distribute the ball from deep positions and perfectly operate through balls sent between defenders. Mead finds herself perfectly in that style of play. She honestly admits that she actually enjoy assisting as much as scoring goals. Beth Mead signed a new long-term contract a few weeks ago. And I think everyone's happy about that, because she's a key player to this team.
Writing previous articles about several world-class female footballers, in none of them did I devote a separate paragraph to the description of the beautiful goals that these players scored. When planning this article, I knew from the very beginning that such a paragraph would arise. So it is. A little tribute to Beth Mead and her breathtaking goals. What a surprise, I will start with the goal after which Beth began to be called the master of the cross-shot. She has created her very own signature finish - the 'crot'. During the She Believes Cup 2019 tournament in the USA, Beth scored a goal whose beauty cannot be described in words, you just have to see it. It was a game against Brazil. Fran Kirby created free space for Beth on the right wing, Mead picked up the ball outside the box and fired a shot from a tight angle. It's a goal that you can watch over and over and it never cease to delight you. Another goal I want to mention is the goal from the match against Brighton from the 18/19 season, after which Arsenal celebrated the Women’s Super League championship title. Beth Mead received the ball on the Brighton's half, ran down inside and hit the ball from about 30 meters. The ball landed straight into the right top corner of the goal. I'm sure nobody expected that in such a situation she would shoot on goal, I remember watching this match, I thought to myself "what the hell is she doing", but she just looked quickly towards the goal and left me speechless with her outstanding long-range strike. She has won the WFA Goal of the Year with this brilliant strike. Very well deserved. On October 20, 2019, in a 4-0 win at the Continental Cup match against Charlton Women, she scored a goal that left me personally in a dilemma whether physical laws really exist. That was a delightful finesse shot. She fired the shot from the edge of the box, the ball curled straight into the back of the net. Bend it like Beth Mead. She showed the genius of her individual brilliance in a match against Chelsea from the 18/19 season. On April 1, 2018, in the derby match at Meadow Park, in the 45th minute of the match, Mead got the ball on the right wing, easily dribbled throught two Chelsea's defenders, with the ball close to the foot, she ran into the penalty box and she just put the ball in the net. If it's still not enough, then you can always look at YouTube, search for Beth Mead and find there, for example, beautiful goal from the season opening match against West Ham from September this year or another beautiful, precise strike from England's game against Czech Republic, November this year. Just type on Youtube: "Beth Mead" and trust me, you'll never be disappointed. Let's go back in time, until July 12, 2015, 20-year-old Beth Mead gives Sunderland a victory after a great individual action ending with a brilliant shot to the right upper corner of the goal in added time of the game. Holding the ball close to her foot, she didn't let opponents to take the ball from her, with the body balance she misled the rivals and finished the action with a precise shot from behind the penalty area.
In my opinion, but I think there is a lot of people who agree with me as well, Beth Mead is a role model both on and off the pitch. I read articles about her and interviews with her and I think that she has so much wisdom and knowledge about football that it is impossible not to admire her. In one of the interviews given to the English newspaper DailyMail she mentioned comparing women's and men's football and said: "The men's boot room is probably bigger than our changing room at the training ground, but you don't need a fancy room to make you a better footballer ". And I can only agree with that sentence, because that's 100% true. She shows not only her wisdom, but also self-confidence. Not only on the pitch, but as we can see, also off the pitch. The attention and love she give to her fans after every game is amazing. Always coming to meet fans, she always finds time to take picture or have a little chat. A few days ago I've seen a video on Twitter, Beth Mead playing with kids after the game. She took a moment to even take kids on the pitch and have a little run with them. For her it's just a small gesture, but for these children it's definitely an unforgettable feeling that put a smile on their faces. For these children, and not only for them, she becomes an inspiration. In an interview with The Telegraph, she herself admitted: "It's crazy for people to be looking up to us because in my head I’m me. I'm just normal Beth Mead. I'm nothing special. It's nice - but it's weird ". That passion, great talent and modesty. It's such a pleasure to watch her doing some magic on the pitch. Everything in her movements is harmonious and thought out. Let's hope that Beth Mead will continue to grow up as a player so that her potential will be appreciated, because I have the impression that her talent is still slightly underrated.
A note from the author
I'm extremely happy that I can publish my articles here, but I want to leave the name of my own blog here because this is where I always publish them first: usualunusualmotivation.sport.blog