England goalkeeper Mary Earps speaks out after Nike refuses to sell her kit
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Featured Image Credit: Zac Goodwin/Isabel Infantes/PA Wire
The dust has well and truly settled on the 2023 Women's World Cup, a tournament that unfortunately meant football won't be coming home this year.
Despite failing to lift the trophy, there is no questioning that the success of our Lionesses has led to more people falling in love with the sport.
And what better way to show off your affection for your favourite player with a replica jersey of said players name on the back.
If you favourite is Alessia Russo or Lauren James, then you'll have no problem in finding a replica shirt.
However, if it is a Mary Earps shirt you are after, then you are not going to have much luck.
There is no questioning that the Manchester United goalkeeper had a magnificent tournament Down Under as she claimed the Golden Glove award despite England not coming out victorious overall.
Earps also made massive headlines in the final after saving a penalty and ultimately celebrating by shouting 'f*ck off' several times.
There is no doubt the goalkeeper's heroic performance have gained her more fans, but those newcomers will not be able to purchase one of her shirts as Nike are not selling them.
Earps was extremely disappointed prior to the World Cup that her replica shirt would not be sold, saying: "It is hugely disappointing and very hurtful.
"On a personal level, it is obviously hugely hurtful considering the last 12 months especially – and also I think there has been an incredible rise in goalkeeping participation over that year.
"For my own family and friends and loved ones not to be able to buy my shirt, they are going to come out and wear normal clothes and I know that sounds like: 'Oh Mary, what a horrible problem,' but on a personal level that is really hard."
Following the conclusion of the World Cup final on Sunday (20 August), Nike released a statement providing an update on their initial decision.
It read: "Nike is committed to women’s football and we’re excited by the passion around this year’s tournament and the incredible win by the Lionesses to make it into the final.
"We are proudly offering the best of Nike innovation and services to our federation partners and hundreds of athletes.
"We hear and understand the desire for a retail version of a goalkeeper jersey and we are working towards solutions for future tournaments, in partnership with Fifa and the federations.
"The fact that there’s a conversation on this topic is testament to the continued passion and energy around the women’s game and we believe that’s encouraging."
The saga doesn't stop there, however, as Earps has since issued a response to Nike's statement.
Posting it to her Instagram stories, the goalkeeper said: "@Nike is this your version of an apology/taking responsibility. A powerful statement of intent?"
Tyla has reached out to Nike for further comment.