England ace Nobbs explains why world-class Smith is "best I’ve ever faced"

England and Arsenal midfielder Jordan Nobbs has named Lionesses legend Kelly Smith as the "best she's ever faced" during her career as a footballer.

The 29-year-old, who narrowly missed out on a spot in Sarina Wiegman's team in the Women's Euro 2022 due to injury, said Smith has "unbelievable talent".

Nobbs has been cheering on the Lionesses from the stands, after missing out through injury, and recently shared the two players rivals should look out for during the major tournament.

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And now in an interview with Daily Star Sport, the England footballer discussed the moment she came face-to-face with one of the greats in women's football.

Asked who the best opponent she ever faced was, Nobbs told us: "I think if she [Kelly Smith] played football in this era, she'd be world class and up for a Ballon d'Or. She's got an unbelievable amount of talent.

"When I came to Arsenal, I think she showed that over the years of how to be so technical and gifted at that level."

Smith enjoyed three spells with the WSL club and was part of Arsenal's Quadruple winning season of 2006/07 where she recorded a phenomenal 30 goals in 34 games across the four competitions.

However, in that season the legend missed both legs of the UEFA Women's Cup final through suspension after being sent off for giving the finger to opposition fans in the semi.

She has spoken about her previous alcohol addiction in her book Kelly Smith Footballer: My Story in which she also details the reason behind her infamous goal celebration where she took off her boot and kissed it.

And Smith often speaks highly of her Arsenal teammate as she claimed Nobbs' injury was a "huge blow" for England in the last Women's World Cup 2019 which was hosted in France.

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Despite facing injuries in her career, Nobbs has still managed to be a role model to recovering players.

She told Daily Star Sport: "I still wasn't in that selected phase [for the Women's Euros] but I'll always be humble about it. I just wanted to be fit to be in the selection but my injury took that away from me.

"But I think with me, I've always been a role model and I've had a lot of experiences that I talk to with other players, but when you come to the football world you are one big football family and we do support and look after each other."

The Lionesses started their Women's Euro 2022 campaign in style after nabbing all 9 points from group stages when playing Austria, Norway and Northern Ireland.

Wiegman's team are set to face Spain in the quarter-finals tonight (Wednesday, July 20) and there's no idea if the Spanish will make any changes to her starting XI.

Footie viewers were stunned when they noticed "shades of Dennis Bergkamp" in Alessia Russo's goal against their UK opponents last Friday.

The England striker came off the bench to replace Ellen White at half-time in which she netted a header and pulled off a breathtaking turn to place the ball in the back of the net.

Fans were in awe as the Manchester United forward netted the goal which looked incredibly similar to Arsenal star Bergkamp's against the Magpies in 2002.


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