Manchester United Women and Chelsea Women will be looking to reach the Continental Cup final for the first time when they face off on Wednesday.
The pair were losing semi-finalists last season, while Chelsea also bowed out at the penultimate stage in 2018, losing to Manchester City Women both times.
Chelsea have lost just one game in all competitions this season but that came in the Continental Cup group stage, a penalty shootout defeat to Reading, though qualification was already secured. Their opponents are the only unbeaten team left in the tournament and beat Man City in the group stage to top their group.
Read on for our Man Utd Women vs Chelsea Women preview, predictions, team news and TV coverage information.
When is Man Utd Women vs Chelsea Women and where can I watch live?
Competition: Continental Tyres League Cup
Venue: Leigh Sports Village
Date: Wednesday, 29 January 2020
Kick-off: 7:30 PM (UK time)
TV coverage (UK): The game will not be broadcast on traditional TV but fans can watch online using The FA Player.
Man Utd Women
25 January 2020: Man Utd Women 2-3 Man City Women (FA Cup)
19 January 2020: Man Utd Women 3-0 Tottenham Women (Women’s Super League)
15 January 2020: Man Utd Women 2-1 Brighton Women (Continental Cup)
05 January 2020: Man Utd 0-1 Bristol City Women (Women’s Super League)
11 December 2019: Birmingham Women 1-3 Man Utd Women (Continental Cup)
26 January 2020: Charlton Women 0-4 Chelsea Women (FA Cup)
19 January 2020: Arsenal Women 1-4 Chelsea Women (Women’s Super League)
15 January 2020: Chelsea Women 3-1 Aston Villa Women (Continental Cup)
12 January 2020: Chelsea Women 6-1 Bristol City Women (Women’s Super League)
05 January 2020: Chelsea Women 3-1 Reading Women (Women’s Super League)
Ones to watch
Man Utd Women: Leah Galton
Man Utd have been impressive in their first season in England’s top flight and one of their star players is Leah Galton. The 25-year-old has had a tough career so far and took a break from playing in 2018, before coming back to join Man Utd.
Since then, Galton has proven to be so important to the Red Devils in both the Women’s Championship and Women’s Super League and was rewarded with a new contract on Tuesday. Her performances have seen also Galton tipped with an England call up soon, though that will come when she wants as she previously turned down the opportunity feeling she wasn’t ready.
Chelsea Women: Bethany England
When Chelsea announced the signing of Sam Kerr towards the end of 2019, there were worries over how Bethany England would deal with the news. The English striker had been leading the line well for Chelsea and was scoring goals for fun, while also earning a deserved call up to the national team.
But would Kerr push her out? No. Instead, England seems to have taken this as a challenge to get even better and she’s done exactly that, outshining her new teammate at times. And with Kerr away on international duty, the responsibility for goals -will largely fall on England again — though Chelsea’s squad have proven they are capable of scoring from various positions.
Man Utd Women
Casey Stoney could opt to start Lauren James after her positive impact from the bench against Man City, scoring her 25th goal for the club, with Jane Ross possibly the one to drop down.
Otherwise, expect Man Utd to line up very similarly to how they did against Man City with captain Katie Zelem and Hayley Ladd in the deeper midfield roles.
Predicted XI: Earps; A. Turner, McManus, M. Turner, Smith; Zelem, Ladd; James, Groenen, Galton; Sigsworth.
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Chelsea will be without Kerr and Ji So-yun who are away on international duty with Australia and South Korea respectively, meaning England is likely to lead the line on her own.
Fran Kirby remains unavailable with a virus but otherwise, Emma Hayes has a relatively fit squad to cause from and should field a strong XI after being able to rest stars against Charlton Athletic.
Predicted XI: Berger; Andersson, Eriksson, Bright, Mjelde; Ingle, Spence; Cuthbert, Bachman, Reiten; England.
Chelsea have been blowing teams away in 2020 and it may be a similar case on Wednesday. Man Utd were unfortunate not to at least take Man City to extra-time at the weekend but their defence was very open and allowed Ellen White the chances to score twice.
With Chelsea in their current form, a generous defence is not something you want, and Man Utd were also haunted at the other end with wastefulness in front of goal. Chelsea may also reap the benefits of a favourable FA Cup tie against Championship opposition, allowing them to rest their star players.