Mel C joins 11-strong team of music stars for Lionesses' World Cup song

England's Rachel Daly, Georgia Stanway, Kiera Walsh and Ella Toone celebrate. Credit: PA

Spice Girl Melanie C, Self Esteem and Olivia Dean are among the stars to record a track for the Lionesses ahead of the World Cup on Thursday.

The song, titled Call Me A Lioness, features an 11-strong side of artists who have come together to form Hope FC.

Released on Wednesday, the day before the tournament kicks off, the track will raise money for charities that support grassroots girls’ and women’s football.

Living up to her 'Sporty Spice' moniker, former Spice Girl Melanie C said: “It’s been amazing to see the popularity of women’s football grow and their incredible win last year was a huge inspiration for this new song for the World Cup.

“I’m so privileged to be involved with a whole host of amazing female artists, cheering on our women’s team to bring it home again!”

Mel C Credit: PA

Mercury-prize nominee Self Esteem described the recording process as “very fun”, adding: “The Lionesses are the future and I am so proud and excited to get behind them this summer.”

They are joined by Wolf Alice singer Ellie Rowsell, Sports Team’s Al Greenwood, Marika Hackman, Rachel Chinouriri, Shura, Jasmine Jethwa, Rose Gray and Highlyy on the track.

Songwriter Glen Roberts conceived the idea for the song after he realised the Lionesses did not have a song of their own while he was celebrating their Women’s Euro 2022 victory last year.

He called up rising star Dean and producer Joel Pott to help write a song dedicated to the female squad.

The track also takes inspiration from Gabby Logan’s commentary at the 2022 Euros when she said: “The Lionesses have brought football home.

“Now it’s down to the rest of us to make sure it stays here. You think it’s all over? It’s only just begun.”

Olivia Dean Credit: PA

Dean said: “When Glen rang me with the idea of writing a song for the Lionesses I said yes instantly.

“It felt important that they have their own anthem as they are creating their own legacy.

“We wanted to make a song that gives girls a soundtrack to their pride of the Lionesses and of being a woman, and to unite everyone in that pride.”

She added that they wanted to capture the feeling of “togetherness” in the song and felt the project was a “beautiful way” for the artists to team up.

The Hope FC name is a tribute to former England player, coach and manager Hope Powell and is also meant to represent “Hope For Change”.

Lyrics in the track also include mentions for England manager Sarina Wiegman and players Alessia Russo, Chloe Kelly and Ella Toone.

“A Russo back heel, and crowd was chanting, then Kelly dropped the mic, started dancing, Toone had the finish, we were in it to win it, and life would never be the same,” sing Hope FC.

England's first 2023 World Cup group stage match against Haiti will be broadcast live on ITV1 and ITVX on Saturday July 22. Kick-off is scheduled for 10.30am BST.

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