Jill Scott: Everything you need to know about queer England footballer turned I’m A Celeb hero

Jill Scott, former professional footballer, wears an orange shirt at the FA Women's Super League match between Liverpool and Everton FC at Anfield on September 25, 2022

Jill Scott, the legendary Lioness, is already looking like she could become queen of the jungle on I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here! 

Jill Scott entered the I’m a Celebrity jungle in Sunday night’s show (6 November) list alongside former England rugby star Mike Tindall and disgraced musician Boy George.

Immediately, she won praise from viewers for her bravery in a terrifying bungee jump challenge, and sparked memes after she was caught swearing at a hammock.

Fans of the footballer won’t be surprised that she’s already being tipped to win – she won hearts, as well as glory, in the Women’s Euros earlier this year. She announced her retirement after helping England take home the trophy.

When asked about her former teammates’ reaction to her appearance on the ITV reality show, she said: “I think my England teammates will be shocked when they find out. But I think they will say if there is a show for Jill to go on, because of the team side, then this is the one to do.”

Scott has received an abundance of support from her fans and her former Aston Villa team manager, Carla Wood, who tagged her as “so positive and so lively”.

She gave her best wishes: “I think she’ll win it. Jill is an unbelievable character, she’s an unbelievable individual. She’s so positive and so lively. She’s got a bag full of stories, so she’ll keep the jungle entertained, for sure.”
Here’s everything you need to know about the mighty Lioness.

Who is Jill Scott?

The 35-year-old midfielder was born on February 2, 1987, in Sunderland, where she started her football career at the age of 19.

Initially, she joined her hometown’s team before moving to Everton Ladies in 2006.

Jill Scott signed a two-year deal with Manchester City in 2013 after playing for seven years with the Toffees. Later in 2021, she returned to play on loan for Everton and Aston Villa.
Among her biggest achievements are winning the FA Women’s Premier League Cup in 2008, the Women’s FA Cup in 2010, and the Women’s Super League in 2016.

In her international career, she earned 161 senior international caps after making her debut in 2006 and scored 27 goals for England.

She is one of only two players, with Fara Williams, to win over 150 caps for England.

Scott has also been appointed as the Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in 2020 for her services to women’s football.

Jill Scott was one of many LGBTQ+ players on the England team

In March 2020, Scott announced her engagement to long-term girlfriend Shelly Unit.

On 23 August, 2022 Jill Scott announced her retirement from football after helping carry England to victory in the Women’s Euros.

During the tournament, a video clip of swearing at a German player went viral. She gave her explanation for the viral clip during an interview with the Guardian.

Scott said: “I don’t like to swear usually but I did in that moment.

“She had my leg trapped between hers and she wouldn’t give us my leg back while the game’s going on. She also said something to me and I just reacted.”

As part of her retirement announcement, she wrote a 3,000-plus word article in The Players’ Tribune, in which she said: “Today, I may be saying my goodbyes to football, but we’re going to make this a celebration. No sad faces!! We’ve had too much fun for any tears.”