Ahead of Monday night's Ballon d'Or awards hosted in Paris, nominee Georgia Stanway expresses disappointment at not being able to attend due to international games: "If it was planned a little bit better, then maybe it would be easier for a lot of female footballers to be there"
Tuesday 31 October 2023 07:09, UK
Georgia Stanway expressed disappointment at not being able to attend the Ballon d'Or ceremony, calling it a "once-in-a-lifetime opportunity".
Stanway is part of an England quartet including Mille Bright, Rachel Daly and Mary Earps named as nominees for the women's Ballon d'Or, awarded to the best female footballer in 2023.
All four players contributed to the Lionesses reaching the World Cup final this year, where Spain defeated England 1-0.
The awards are set to be announced on Monday evening in Paris, but due to the Lionesses being away to Belgium in a Nations League match, the England nominees will not be able to attend.
Stanway says it is frustrating the Ballon d'Or ceremony was not "planned a little bit better".
"It's unfortunate we couldn't be there," Stanway said. "That's something we spoke as a player group (about), and we just kind of said it would be nice in the future if it wasn't on a matchday minus one, so that we could enjoy the experience.
"It is (frustrating), because it's potentially a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. You never know if you're ever going to get selected for such an accolade like that again, so it would be really nice to enjoy the experience and be there and feel like a star amongst the stars.
"If it was planned a little bit better, then maybe it would be easier for a lot of female footballers to be there."
Stanway also expressed her delight regarding her nomination, she said: "It's very cool, and nice to get the accolade as well as a lot of the team-mates in the Lionesses.
"There's a few people I would also add to the list who have had very, very successful years. It's a real achievement to be amongst those names."
Asked for her additional thoughts on the matter, and on there only being a single female Ballon d'Or category, England boss Sarina Wiegman added: "You hope that develops too.
"We talk about the planning now. Everyone is working so hard and of course, we have to do a job, that's what we're here for.
"So you can't attend that, and it would be really nice if things like that are organised so that players have the opportunity to join too."