The international break is here for women’s football, so it’s time for another look back at the FA Women’s Super League season so far. Chelsea
The international break is here for women’s football, so it’s time for another look back at the FA Women’s Super League season so far.
Chelsea still lead the table ahead of Manchester City and Manchester United, with a crunch class between Emma Hayes’ Blues and Gareth Taylor’s Citizens to come near the end of the season.
There is also a Champions League race to conclude, with Arsenal looking to break into the top three, though time is running out. At the bottom, Bristol City still prop up the table, but things are getting interesting.
The WSL doesn’t fully return until March but there will be a handful of games on the final weekend of February as the league looks to fulfil fixtures that had previously been postponed for a variety of reasons.
Upcoming Women’s Super League fixtures:
Sunday 28 February 2021
- 14:00: Aston Villa vs Arsenal (The FA Player)
- 14:00: Birmingham City vs Manchester City (The FA Player)
- 14:00: Tottenham Hotspur vs Everton (The FA Player)
Sunday 7 March 2021
- 12:00: Manchester United vs Aston Villa (The FA Player)
- 14:00: Birmingham City vs Arsenal (The FA Player)
- 14:00: Brighton & Hove Albion vs Tottenham Hotspur (The FA Player)
- 14:00: Manchester City vs Everton (The FA Player)
- 14:00: Bristol City vs Reading (The FA Player)
- 15:00: West Ham United vs Chelsea (The FA Player)
The FA Player is available to watch around the world, with registration free. All WSL games not on TV across the season will be streamed live on the FA Player.
Chelsea lead a close title race
Well, what a twist we’ve had to the WSL title race in recent weeks. For many Chelsea were the clear favourites going into February, even though they were level on points with Manchester United, due to their overall quality, game in hand and unbeaten run.
But that run was shattered by Brighton, a result that allowed a Manchester club to sneak up on them. But it wasn’t Man Utd, as they lost to Reading on the same day. Instead, it’s Man City who are now Chelsea’s closest challengers and it can be said that they, like the Blues, have their title destiny in their own hands.
Taylor’s side were in brilliant form going into the break, winning seven consecutive league games to claw themselves back into the title race having previously been ruled out. Their final two matches before the break saw them go up against two teams close to them, first traveling to Arsenal before hosting Man Utd in arguably the biggest Manchester Derby yet.
Arsenal fell and so did Man Utd, the latter including an excellent strike from Caroline Weir, to put Man City hot on Chelsea’s tails.
Special game. Special goal. Special player.
— Barclays FA Women's Super League (@BarclaysFAWSL) February 13, 2021
Chelsea do remain in front, however, having bounced back from their defeat to Brighton in spectacular fashion. Like Man City, they beat Arsenal, and then thumped Bristol City as was expected of them to hold a five-point lead. For their January efforts, Hayes and Fran Kirby were awarded Manager and Player of the Month respectively, but both will only be truly happy if the WSL title stays at Kingsmeadow come the end of the season.
But it’s by no means guaranteed. Man City have a game in hand over Chelsea, against Birmingham before the WSL returns in full and still have to play the Blues at the Academy Stadium, a place the London side do not have a good record.
If Chelsea win their remaining seven games, they’ll be champions. If Man City win their remaining eight, they’ll be champions. You couldn’t ask for a more dramatic title race.
Tight at the bottom
The title race is not the only close call in the WSL this season. Bristol City’s revival under Matt Beard has pulled them from the dead and they still have a chance of safety. The Vixens are just two points behind 11th-placed West Ham having won four points from their past three games – their first 11 of the season saw Bristol City accumulate just two.
Their sole defeat in those three games can be overlooked, as it came against Chelsea, but the win over Brighton and draw with West Ham showed their is still life in the relegation race. The Hammers are in a bit of a free fall, losing three of their past four league games, only drawing with Bristol during that time. It comes after they parted company with Beard last year, replacing him with Olli Harder, which would bring a big story if Beard were to lead Bristol City to safety (being drafted in to temporarily replace Tanya Oxtoby who is on maternity leave).
West Ham do have a game in hand over Bristol City, but the Vixens will be looking to pressure on the Hammers when the WSL returns knowing their relegation rivals are at home to Chelsea while they face a strange Reading side.
Do not miss out on any of the action.