• Olivia Cantwell

A GUIDE TO THE WSL SEASON 20/21

Welcome

Hello and welcome to a guide that will explain everything you need to know about the FA Barclays Women's Super League for the 20/21 Season, (Given that it goes ahead safely with corona guidelines not altered)

In this article I will discuss:

  1. What teams are in the league

  2. New summer signings

  3. Players to look out for

  4. Predictions to win the WSL trophy

  5. First fixtures for the opening weekend

What teams are in the league?

In the Barclays FA WSL there are 12 fully professional teams, here is a bit more about each individual team including their venues, Information on the team and their colour of the home kit.


ASTON VILLA

About

Firstly starting our list off with the newly promoted Aston Villa side who have become the latest side to take the leap from the semi-professional league of the championship to the fully professional league of the Barclays WSL.

The side wears the traditional colours of Claret and blue.

The Barclays FA WSL which makes a welcome return on September 5th will see the side face Man City in the opening fixture.

I predict the side to finish mid/lower of the table due to the huge change in leagues, It can take teams a while to adjust.

Stadium: BESCOT STADIUM

Colours: CLARET SHIRT, WHITE SHORTS, BLUE SOCKS (home)

Manager: GEMMA DAVIES

Player to watch: CHLOE ARTHUR


ARSENAL

About

Ex WSL champions of the 18/19 season are next on our list, Arsenal are a side that are constantly setting new records and achievements in English women's football. With the likes of Miedema and many other world-class renowned players, watching an Arsenal match is always great fun and entertaining. Arsenal women is a great team to see and the majority of the time will come away with the three points in the league. With manager Joe Montemurro bringing in many new signings this summer transfer window such as Steph Cately and Noelle Maritz I think we will see a new Arsenal and a change in the style of play.

                                              I predict the gunner's side to come towards the top of the table and if not

certainly, be in the very competitive title chase. Stadium: MEADOW PARK, BOREHAMWOOD

                                              Colours: RED SHIRT, WHITE SHORTS, RED SOCKS (home)

                                              Manager: JOE MONTEMURRO       

                                                                          Player to watch: VIVIANNE MIEDEMA

BIRMINGHAM CITY

About

Next on our list is 2x WSL runners up and the winners of the 2012 FA Cup Birmingham City. This is a club rich in history and has had many talents such as now Man City's Ellen White and the footballing legend Laura Basset.

Their current team is also made up of great players with a lot of potential such as young England international keeper Hannah Hampton and young Scotland international Abbi Grant.

This season will be interesting to see how the blues cope with the selling of some of their crucial players such as Chloe Arthur and Lucy Staniford.

Last season Birmingham City finished a spot above relegation, and with the loss of some of their main players I do not see them coming any higher than lower mid-table.

Stadium: SOLIHULL MOORS FOOTBALL CLUB

Colours: BLUE SHIRT, BLUE SHORTS, BLUE SOCKS (home)

Manager: CARLA WARD

Player to watch: HANNAH HAMPTON


BRISTOL CITY

About

Bristol City women are the next team on our list, this is a side of youth with the average age in the team being 23 years old, as the Birmingham City side there are great young rising players such as England youngster Ebony Salmon who showed that she can perform against the top teams such as last seasons champions Chelsea in which she scored a goal in the fixture.

Bristol City finished two places above relegation last season and with little movement in their transfer market, I see them finishing in a similar position.

Stadium: TWERTON PARK

Colours: RED SHIRT, N/A SHORTS, N/A SOCKS (home)

Manager: TANYA OXTOBY

Player to watch: EBONY SALMON


BRIGHTON

About

Brighton the only WSL team from the south coast are next, the Seagulls had a pretty respectable season for the 19/20 period, despite finishing 9th the team always showed a strong work ethic and determinations, with a healthy mix of older and younger players which brings both experience and new talent to the field. The 20/21 is starting to look more promising for the Seagulls. During the summer transfer window, they have signed Dutch double Inessa Kaagman and Léa Cordier,

these two signings should bolster the Brighton side massively.

Stadium: PEOPLES PENSION STADIUM

Colours: BLUE AND WHITE VERTICAL STRIPE SHIRT, WHITE SHORTS, BLUE SOCKS (home)

Manager: HOPE POWELL

Player to watch: ELLIE BRAZIL


CHELSEA

About

Next up is Last seasons WSL winners Chelsea, Chelsea are a team that have been in the WSL since it was first created in 2012 and are always towards the top of the table. Last season Chelsea particularly stood out to spectators as their quality of football was honestly miles above the rest in the league (and that is coming from me, an Arsenal fan). Towards the end of the season, they brought in new winter signings Guro Reiten and Aussie superstar Sam Kerr who ended up having great partnerships with Beth England who has particularly shone last season.

During the recent summer transfer window, they have bought Bayerns captain Melanie Leupolz, Canadian youth star Jessie Fleming and Danish Dynamite Pernille Harder. This season looks to be another great season for the blues and I predict them to finish in the top 2

Stadium: KINGSMEADOW

Colours: BLUE SHIRT, BLUE SHORTS, WHITE SOCKS (home)

Manager: EMMA HAYES

Player to watch: JESSIE FLEMING


EVERTON

About

Everton are the next in our list, coming in off the back of last season Everton have already made a load of new signings which are looking very promising for the club in blue! A particular signing that stood out to me was Danish young star Nicoline Sorensen from Brondby. In the Kvindeliga she was the top goal scorer and was up there with the star players for both the league and Brondby at just the young age of 22. I really think she will also shine in the WSL and will be in contention for the top goalscorer award despite the competition. I predict that this season for Everton women will be one of the best they have had in years.

I think they will finish in 4th or 5th place. Stadium: WALTON HALL PARK

Colours: BLUE SHIRT, WHITE SHORTS, WHITE SOCKS

Manager: WILLIE KIRK

Player to watch: NICOLINE SORENSEN


MANCHESTER CITY

About

Manchester City is a side that has dominated the WSL for many years and has for the majority of them been in contention for the trophy, Manchester City is probably one of the best-funded sides and this is used to their advantage. Their summer window has brought in lots of well-known faces such as Rose Lavelle, Sam Mewis and Chloe Kelly which brings both experience and fresh talent to the team. With this season being the first for their new coach Gareth Taylor it will be interesting to see how they finish. I think Man City will finish in the top 3.

Stadium: ACADEMY STADIUM

Colours: LIGHT BLUE SHIRT, WHITE SHORTS, LIGHT BLUE SOCKS

Manager: GARETH TAYLOR

Player to watch: LAUREN HEMP


MANCHESTER UNITED

About

Now onto the other Manchester-based team commonly known as the Red Devils. From being a side that was recently promoted to the WSL I think everyone was blown back by the quality of football that Manchester United displayed in their debuting season. One of the names that particularly stood out was Lauren James, the young England international made sure that the league knew her name, If they get some new faces to the side I think it can only get better for the reds.

I predict them finishing around 4th or 5th.

Stadium: LEIGH SPORTS VILLAGE

Colours: RED SHIRT, WHITE SHORTS, BLACK SOCKS

Manager: CASEY STONEY

Player to watch: LAUREN JAMES


READING

About

Reading FC is probably the side that has changed the most since the WSL was last played, with huge departures in the club such as Mayumi Pacheco, Millie Farrow, Jo Potter, Rachael Laws, Sophie Howard and Maxime Bennink and long time servers Remi Allen and Charlie Estcourt.

But with players departing they welcome ex-Arsenal champions Emma Mitchell and Danielle Carter, as well as OL Reign, forward Jess Fishlock (on loan) and Ex Chelsea player Deanna Cooper.

With these new editions, Reading are stronger opposition than previous season.

I predict them to come towards the top of mid-table.

Stadium: MADEJSKI STADIUM

Colours: BLUE AND WHITE HORIZONTAL STRIPES, WHITE SHORTS, WHITE SOCKS

Manager: KELLY CHAMBERS

Player to watch: DANIELLE CARTER


TOTTENHAM

About

Tottenham are next, the side that got promoted in the 19/20 season had a shaky start to their debuting season with friendly's against fellow WSL sides ending in large score sheets against them. Despite their uncertain start they managed to maintain their spot in the WSL and finished in 7th place. With the new season fast approaching Tottenham have recruited some big names such as Alanna Kennedy from Australia and Shelina Zadorsky from Canada who are expected to boost the team and bump them further towards the WSL title,

Despite these new editions, I think the side will finish mid-table in 7th again.

Stadium: THE HIVE STADIUM

Colours: WHITE SHIRT, NAVY BLUE SHORTS, WHITE SOCKS

Manager: KAREN HILLS AND JUAN AMOROS

Player to watch: RIANNA DEAN


WEST HAM

ABOUT

Our last team on the list is west ham united women. This is a team that was formed in 1991 and successfully qualified for the WSL in 2018. The club has become the runners up of the fa cup in 2018. With players such as Alisha Lehmann and Gilly Flaherty on their side, they are equipped with both a mixture of youth and experience. West Ham women have also acquired new talent in the form of ex-Arsenal Academy star Ruby Grant which is a huge addition to the side. I think that because West Ham have had crucial players leaving and their new players will require time to settle in, their style of play may change from last season. I think West ham with the finish around 7th or 8th in the table again but will not be in contention for relegation.

Stadium: VICTORIA ROAD

Colours: CLARET AND BLUE, WHITE SOCKS, WHITE SCOKS

Manager: MATT BEARD

Player to watch: ALISHA LEHMANN



That brings us to the end of our list!

Wondering what teams play when? Here is the list of fixture times and dates.