Thursday, 2 May 2019

Women's World Cup: Ada Hegerberg not in Norway squad for France 2019

Ballon d'Or winner Ada Hegerberg has not been included in Norway's squad for the Women's World Cup.

The 23-year-old striker's absence for the tournament in France this summer was expected because she has refused to play for the national side since 2017.

Hegerberg has taken a stand against what she describes as a lack of respect for female players in Norway.

"We tried to solve it, we had meetings, but she decided not to play," coach Martin Sjogren said.

The Lyon player's sister, Paris St-Germain midfielder Andrine, is also absent from the squad.

Chelsea's Maria Thorisdottir, a defender, and Maren Mjelde, a midfielder, are included, as is Wolfsburg forward Caroline Graham Hansen.

Speaking to BBC World Service, Sjogren added: "As a coach, you need to focus on the players who want to be a part of the team and Ada doesn't.

"We respect that and we have been working hard with the other players and they have been doing a great job."

Three-time Champions League winner Hegerberg's decision to step away from international football came just months before the Norwegian Football Association (NFF) and the nation's player' association (NISO) signed an historic equal pay agreement.

But she has maintained her reasons for quitting, later saying it was an "easy choice" for her.

BBC Sport will broadcast the Women's World Cup, which runs from 7 June until 7 July.

Ada Hegerberg has been nominated for BBC Women's Footballer of the Year 2019.

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