Ashley Lawrence, is a player who can play the full-back or the midfielder position for both Chelsea F.C. Women and the Canadian women’s soccer team. The 5’6” player made a big impact for Canada and also made a big impression in the professional club game.
Ashley Lawrence: CanWNT’s Important Midfielder and Full-Back
Lawrence was born on June 11, 1995 in Toronto and grew up in Caledon East, Ontario. Her mother was born in Nova Scotia, while her step-father was born in Nigeria. Her hobbies include reading and her role model growing up was Lionel Messi. She also attended Mayfield Secondary School in Caledon East, Ontario.
The place where Lawrence grew up now has a place as a special celebrity known within the city of Caledon. She currently has a decorated career with both the national team and also with her accomplishments in the club level.
What is interesting about Lawrence when looking at her college career was her ability to create scoring chances for her teammates as a midfielder during her time with the West Virginia University. This can be clearly seen in the 3-0 win over Texas Tech on October 14, 2016, where she was with two of the three assists for that game. This is what West Virginia head coach, Nikki Izzo-Brown, said about Lawrence and Buchanan in 2016 (they were both co-captains of the college team in 2016).
“Both are worth No. 1 picks,” Izzo-Brown said. “And I’ve been blessed to have both of them. So, I think it’s a matter of what coaches need, but there’d be no question if I had the No. 1 draft pick that I would pick either one of them,” (source: Neil Davidson of the Canadian Press).
Ashley Lawrence: Her Success with Paris Saint-Germain (2017-23)
Lawrence in the club game really made her name with Paris Saint-Germain. The full-back and midfielder played with the club team seven years. During that period, she has won the Division 1 Féminine by finishing first in the 2020-21 season. Lawrence also won twice championships with the Coupe de France trophy twice. Lastly, in her first year with PSG, her team finished runners-up in the UEFA Women’s Champions League competition.
She has created quite a reputation. Her success with the national team, including scoring goals and delivering assists makes her a dangerous player to go up against. This can be seen in the quote below in Hidayah Ali’s article for the PSG Post:
“Lawrence became a crucial part of the team and one of the most loved players by fans. The defender has played her whole European career in Paris and now heads over to England, as reports have confirmed she has signed a three-year deal with Chelsea.”
Ashley Lawrence: Her Success with the CanWNT
Lawrence is one of Canada’s best players. In the Olympics, she did a fantastic job in creating turnovers in favour of her team and winning those midfield battles. Lawrence also made a big clearance out of her own goal line to prevent a potential Sweden game-winner as Canada would win the match and also Olympic gold in penalties.
Also, from Alexandre Gangué-Ruzic’s OneSoccer article, Priestman had a lot of praise for Lawrence:
“I think she’s one of the best full-backs in the world, if not the best,” Priestman told OneSoccer back in April. “Working with her, and seeing her live at training, she’s unbelievable, and doesn’t get the recognition that she deserves. “She’s one of the most humble players that you’ll ever meet as well; she doesn’t go shouting about who she is.”
In 2021, because of her success with the national and club team, she was a finalist in the Ballon d’Or for the BBC Women’s Footballer of the Year 2021. Even though she did not win the award, it shows the importance she has with her national team as Canada won Olympic gold in that same year.
She also made some key defensive plays to preserve the 0-0 draw with Nigeria in the FIFA Women’s World Cup, which helped get a point in their first game.
Games Coming up For CanWNt
Canada has a big game coming on Monday at 6:00 AM ET as they face the hosts, the Matildas at Melbourne Rectangular Stadium in Melbourne, Australia. The game will be televised nationally in Canada on TSN and it will also be shown on RDS.