Rachel Unitt

Last updated

Rachel Unitt
London Bees v Tottenham Hotspur LFC, 10 February 2019 (02).jpg
Personal information
Full name Rachel Elizabeth Unitt [1]
Date of birth (1982-06-05) 5 June 1982 (age 39)
Place of birth Walsall, England
Height1.72 m (5 ft 7+12 in) [2]
Position(s) Left-back
Club information
Current team
London Bees
Number 33
Senior career*
1998–2000 Wolves Women
2000–2001 Everton Ladies
2001–2004 Fulham Ladies
2004–2011 Everton Ladies
2005 New Jersey Wildcats 3 (2)
2010 Leeds City Vixens
2012–2013 Birmingham City 11 (1)
2014–2016 Notts County 5 (0)
2016–2017 Solihull Moors
2018– London Bees 5 (1)
National team
2000–2013 England 102 (8)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league onlyand correct as of 09:08, 19 December 2018 (UTC)
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 12:54, 30 January 2014 (UTC)

Rachel Elizabeth Unitt (born 5 June 1982) is an English footballer who plays for FA Women's Championship club London Bees. After beginning her club career with Wolves, Unitt began a long association with Everton in 2000. This was intersected by a three-year spell at Fulham between 2001 and 2004 and a summer on loan to New Jersey Wildcats in 2005. She left Everton in 2012 for a two-year stint at Birmingham City and later played for Notts County in 2014. A sturdy left back, Unitt has won over 100 caps for the England women's national football team since her debut in August 2000. She represented England at the 2001, 2005 and 2009 editions of the UEFA Women's Championship as well as at the FIFA Women's World Cup in 2007 and 2011. She was ruled out of both the 2013 UEFA Women's Championship and the Great Britain squad for the 2012 London Olympics due to injury. In 2004 and 2006 Unitt was named The Football Association's (FA) International Player of the Year. In 2016, she was inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame at the National Football Museum. [3]


Club career

Unitt started her footballing career with Wolves Women as a 14-year-old. [4] She joined Everton Ladies for 2000–01, before signing a professional contract with Fulham L.F.C. the following season. After a successful spell at Fulham, she returned to Everton in 2004. Her achievements to date include winning the domestic treble with Fulham in the 2002–03 season and the 2010 FA Women's Cup with Everton.

In July 2005, Unitt joined American W-League side New Jersey Wildcats for the last seven games of their season, teaming up with England and former Fulham teammate Rachel Yankey. The Wildcats eventually won the W-League championship, beating the Ottawa Fury by 3–0 in the championship match with Unitt scoring the first goal. Unitt also trained with Malmö FF in December 2005, but, fearing burn-out, rejected a contract offer from the Swedish club. [5]

With Everton dormant ahead of the 2011 FA WSL season, Unitt played for Leeds City Vixens in the FA Women's Premier League Cup. [6]

At the end of the 2011 FA WSL season, Unitt put in a transfer request after eight years at Everton. [7] Following negotiations a move to Birmingham City was announced in February 2012. [8] After her time at the club was disrupted by injury, Unitt rejected Birmingham's offer of a contract extension in January 2014 and left the club as a free agent. [9] She signed for Notts County on 30 January 2014, [10] only to suffer an injury to the cruciate ligament in her other knee during the 2014 FA WSL season. [11] In December 2014 she agreed to stay with Notts County, combining her rehabilitation with a place on the club's coaching staff. [12]

In 2016, Unitt played for Solihull Moors L.F.C., a women's football club in the West Midlands, in the FA Women's Premier League. [13]

International career

Unitt first played for England in 2000, after 16 appearances for the U18s. Her senior debut came in August 2000, in a 1–0 friendly defeat to France, before 50,000 spectators at Stade Vélodrome. [14] [15] She scored her first international goal in England's victory over the Netherlands in September 2004, [16] and scored twice more in her home town of Walsall during England's 4–1 friendly win over the Czech Republic in May 2005. [17]

Unitt was named the Nationwide International Player of the Year at the 2004 The FA Women's Football Awards. She won the same award in 2006, voted for by the fans on the FA website. [18]

In May 2009, Unitt was one of the first 17 female players to be given central contracts by The Football Association. [19]

At the 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup in China, Unitt was the only outfield member of the England squad who remained unused. On the occasion of her 90th cap, she eventually made a World Cup debut in June 2011, starting England's 1–1 draw with Mexico in Wolfsburg. [20] In March 2012 a Euro 2013 qualifier in Croatia saw Unitt win her 100th international cap. Captain for the day, Unitt scored England's third goal in a 6–0 victory, with a diving header. [21]

A foot injury kept Unitt out of contention for a place in the Great Britain squad for the 2012 London Olympics. During her absence Steph Houghton became the first choice left–back for the national team. [22] In May 2013 Unitt suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury in Birmingham's 1–1 FA WSL Cup draw with Lincoln, which ruled her out of UEFA Women's Euro 2013. [23]

International goals

Scores and results list England's goal tally first.
122 September 2004Sportcomplex Hollandia, Tuitjenhorn Flag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands 1–0 Friendly 1
326 May 2005 Bescot Stadium, Walsall Flag of the Czech Republic.svg  Czech Republic 4–1 Friendly 2
49 February 2006 Dasaki Stadium, Achna Flag of Sweden.svg  Sweden 1–1 Friendly 1
525 October 2009 Bloomfield Road, Blackpool Flag of Malta.svg  Malta 8–0 2011 FIFA World Cup qual. 1
626 November 2009 Buca Arena, İzmir Flag of Turkey.svg  Turkey 3–0 2011 FIFA World Cup qual. 1
719 June 2010 Aranda de Duero Flag of Spain.svg  Spain 2–2 2011 FIFA World Cup qual. 1
831 March 2012Sajmište, Vrbovec Flag of Croatia.svg  Croatia 6–0 2013 UEFA Championship qual. 1


2001–02, 2002–03, 2009–10, 2011–12
2001–02, 2002–03, 2007–08
2002–03, 2003–04
2003–04, 2005–06

Related Research Articles

Karen Carney English international footballer and sports journalist

Karen Julia Carney is an English sports journalist and former professional footballer who played as a winger and midfielder. Carney has been a regular broadcaster for live football on Sky Sports and Amazon Prime, including Women's Super League and men's Premier League matches since 2019. She is also a sports columnist for BBC Sport, BBC Radio 5 Live and BBC Television.

Rachel Yankey

Rachel Aba Yankey, OBE is an English former footballer who played for the England national team. She played as a left winger or forward. She left Arsenal after 13 years in December 2016 at the end of her contract. She is ranked among the Arsenal Ladies Legends.

Everton F.C. (women) Football club

Everton Football Club is an English women's association football team based in Liverpool, England, that competes in the FA Women's Super League, the top division of English women's football. Formed in 1983 as Hoylake W.F.C., it is now part of Everton F.C. and has played home games at Walton Hall Park in Walton since February 2020. The team has won the Premier League National Division once, the Premier League Cup once, and the Women's FA Cup twice.

Fara Williams English footballer

Fara Tanya Franki Merrett MBE is an English former footballer who played as a central midfielder for multiple clubs, as well as the English national team. A consistent goalscorer and set-piece specialist, Williams was considered one of England's leading players. After making her senior debut in 2002, Williams earned 172 caps for the England Women's Team, making her their highest capped player. She played at the 2005, 2009, 2013 and 2017 European Championships, as well as the World Cups in 2007, 2011 and 2015. Williams also featured for Team GB at the 2012 London Olympics.

Siobhan Chamberlain English footballer, sports pundit, and commentator

Siobhan Rebecca Chamberlain is a retired English professional footballer who last played as a goalkeeper for FA WSL club Manchester United and the England national team. She is also a sports pundit and commentator.

Laura Bassett English footballer

Laura Bassett is an English former football defender who represented England internationally. She played for FA WSL club Notts County, Birmingham City, Arsenal, Leeds Carnegie, Chelsea, and Australian W-League club Canberra United.

Dunia Susi English footballer

Dunia Susi is an English international footballer. She plays for FA WSL club Notts County and has also represented Great Britain at the World University Games.

Rachel Williams (footballer) English footballer

Rachel Louise Williams is an English international women's footballer playing for Tottenham Hotspur in the FA WSL. Before rejoining Birmingham City in May 2017, Williams spent 2 years at Notts County Ladies, one year at Chelsea Ladies and three years at her first spell at Birmingham City, where she was converted from an attacking midfielder to a striker. Williams made her senior England debut in July 2009 but had to wait two years for her next appearance, missing out on selection for Women's Euro 2009 and the 2011 Women's World Cup. She was selected in the Great Britain squad for the 2012 London Olympics.

Danielle Hill English footballer

Danielle Marie Hill is an English football goalkeeper who plays for Blackburn Rovers of the FA Women's Championship. She briefly played for Doncaster Rovers Belles in the FA WSL 2. Born in Liverpool, she began her career with Everton Ladies and had a previous spell with Blackburn Rovers. Hill also played for ÍBV of the Icelandic Úrvalsdeild and in Norway for Toppserien club Avaldsnes IL. She has represented England up to Under 23 level.

Natasha Dowie English footballer

Natasha Khalila Dowie is an English footballer who plays as a striker for Women's Super League club Reading. She represented the England women's national football team at the youth level before making her senior international debut in 2009. Dowie played for the London teams Watford, Fulham and Charlton Athletic, and then spent five years with Everton before transferring to FA WSL clubs Liverpool Ladies in November 2012 and Doncaster Rovers Belles in 2016. She also spent three periods on loan with Melbourne Victory of the Australian W-League in 2015, 2016, and 2017 and played for Boston Breakers in the National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) in 2016 and 2017.

Fern Whelan English footballer

Gabriella Fern Whelan is an English footballer who plays for Brighton & Hove Albion W.F.C.. She previously played for both Liverpool and Everton in her native Merseyside and Notts County. She has represented England women's national football team at youth and senior level. A quick central defender, Whelan was named the FA Women's Young Player of the Year in 2008.

Ellen White (footballer) English international footballer

Ellen Toni White is an English international footballer who plays as a forward for Manchester City and the England national team. With England, she has competed at three FIFA Women's World Cup tournaments: in the 2011, 2015 and 2019, reaching the semi-finals in 2015 and 2019 and finishing third in 2015. White earned the Bronze Boot award at the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup in France. She represented Great Britain team at the 2012 and 2020 Summer Olympics.

Ann-Marie Heatherson English footballer

Ann-Marie "Annie" Heatherson is an English footballer who plays as a forward and Captain for Yeovil Town of the FA Women's National League. She began her career with Charlton Athletic and played for rival London clubs Fulham, Millwall Lionesses and Chelsea Ladies after Charlton folded their women's team in 2007. Heatherson also enjoyed short spells in Iceland and the United States before joining Bristol Academy ahead of the inaugural 2011 FA WSL season, where she was also employed by the club as an ambassador. Heatherson represented England up to Under-21 level and was named in senior squads but never capped. She was named the FA Women's Young Player of the Year in 2004.

Sophie Bradley-Auckland English footballer

Sophie Elizabeth Bradley-Auckland is an English international football defender who plays for Sheffield United. She previously played for her local club Nottingham Forest, moving to Leeds United in 2006 and Lincoln Ladies in 2010.

Toni Duggan English footballer

Toni Duggan is an English footballer who plays as a winger or forward for Everton and the England national team. She has previously played in England for Everton and Manchester City, and in Spain for Barcelona and Atlético Madrid.

2010 FA Womens Cup Final English football cup final

The 2010 FA Women's Cup Final was the 40th final of the FA Women's Cup, England's primary cup competition for women's football teams. It was the 17th final to be held under the direct control of the Football Association (FA). The match was contested by Arsenal and Everton at the City Ground on 3 May 2010. Arsenal entered their fifth consecutive final having won the last four. Already the most successful team in the competition's history with 10 wins from 10 finals, Arsenal sought an 11th victory overall. Everton had one previous final appearance, losing 1–0 to Charlton Athletic in 2005. An earlier incarnation of the club, known as Leasowe Pacific, had lost the 1988 final and won in 1989.

Jade Moore English footballer

Jade Ellis Moore is an English footballer who plays as a midfielder for Orlando Pride of the NWSL. She has previously played in England for Reading, Notts County, Birmingham City, Leeds United and Lincoln City. Moore represented England at junior levels and made her debut for the senior national team in 2012. She represented her country at UEFA Women's Euro 2013 and both the 2015 and 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup, winning a bronze medal in 2015.

Gemma Bonner English footballer

Gemma Bonner is an English professional footballer who plays as a defender for Racing Louisville FC of the American National Women's Soccer League (NWSL), as well as the England women's national football team.

Alex Greenwood English footballer

Alex Greenwood is an English footballer who plays for Manchester City in the FA Women's Super League and the England national team. Mainly a left-back, she can also play as a centre-back and is considered to be a set-piece specialist.

Courtney Sweetman-Kirk English footballer

Courtney Alexandra Sweetman-Kirk is an English footballer who plays as a forward for Sheffield United in the FA Women's Championship. She has previously played for FA WSL clubs Liverpool, Everton, Notts County and Lincoln as well as Coventry City and Leicester City in the FA Women's Premier League. Sweetman-Kirk has represented England at under-23 level.


  1. "Player Statistics". FIFA. Retrieved 13 October 2010.
  2. "#14 Rachel Unitt". The Sports Network. Archived from the original on 22 June 2011. Retrieved 8 September 2009.
  3. "England legends inducted into Museum's Hall of Fame". England Football Association. 7 June 2016. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  4. Matt Newsum (12 September 2006). "Rachel Unitt". BBC Dorset. Retrieved 1 January 2011.
  5. "Malmö FF giving up hope on Unitt transfer". Soccerway. 4 February 2006. Retrieved 1 January 2011.
  6. "Premier League Cup Results". She Kicks. 30 October 2010. Retrieved 1 January 2011.
  7. Matthew Gamble (8 February 2012). "Unitt exits Everton". Everton FC. Retrieved 8 February 2012.
  8. "STRENGTH IN UNITT-Y". Birmingham City FC. 8 February 2012. Archived from the original on 30 June 2012. Retrieved 8 February 2012.
  9. "Unitt to leave Birmingham". She Kicks. 27 January 2014. Retrieved 30 January 2014.
  10. "Three more join Notts County". She Kicks. 30 January 2014. Archived from the original on 2 February 2014. Retrieved 30 January 2014.
  11. "Rachel Unitt: England and Notts Ladies defender injures knee". BBC Sport. 2 October 2014. Retrieved 15 February 2015.
  12. "Unitt to aid Notts County coaching team". She Kicks. 3 December 2014. Retrieved 15 February 2015.
  13. "Solihull Ladies enjoy FA Women's Cup success". Solihull Moors FC. 17 November 2016. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  14. "England learn lessons in defeat". TheFA.com. 5 August 2000. Retrieved 15 February 2011.
  15. "Mega Mirror: football crazy". The Mirror. 17 March 2001. Retrieved 17 February 2011.
  16. Tony Leighton (22 September 2004). "Unitt sees off Holland". BBC Sport. Retrieved 1 January 2011.
  17. "England 4–1 Czech Republic". BBC Sport. 27 May 2005. Retrieved 1 January 2011.
  18. FA website Rachel Unitt profile
  19. "England Women awarded contracts". BBC Sport. 14 May 2009. Retrieved 29 July 2009.
  20. Tony Leighton (28 June 2011). "Speedy Mexican Recap". She Kicks. Retrieved 28 June 2011.
  21. Lavery, Glenn (31 March 2012). "Lions on course in Croatia". TheFA.com. The Football Association. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
  22. Garrity, Paul (22 May 2013). "Rachel Unitt to miss rest of season and Euro 2013 with knee injury". BBC . Retrieved 22 May 2013.
  23. Garrity, Paul (22 May 2013). "England lose Unitt for finals". UEFA . Retrieved 22 May 2013.