Episode 8 The Women's Football Show

Episode 8

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It's been another hugely significant week for the WSL,


both on and off the pitch, but rest assured, we've got it


all covered on tonight's Women's Football Show.


Could Chelsea climb to the summit of WSL1 with a win


Victory over Sunderland would boost Birmingham's hopes of securing


And we focus on the future, as the FA points the WSL


And with us on the sofa this evening two guests who have seen plenty


of positive change during their time in the game, Alex Scott


It's on the pitch we begin, though, with Chelsea


The Blues were unbeaten against the Gunners in their last


five WSL1 meetings, including April's 2-0 win at Meadow Park.


COMMENTATOR: Arsenal against Chelsea: always heated. Oh, that's


so close. It's awkward. The Arsenal defence horribly hesitant and in she


nipped at the Chelsea ahead. She has perhaps kept Arsenal in the game.


She scores for the second time this evening. This will be a mighty blow


to Arsenal's title hopes already. Let's have a look at the teams,


Chelsea are without captain Katie Chapman, suspended in the last


match. Aluko, who scored from the bench last time out, rewarded with a


start this time. Danielle Carter has not played since going to win


against Chelsea but she is back and in from the start.


Davison, a chance for her to stretch her legs. Look at this run from


Rafferty on the left, instead goes right for Blondel. Davison is on the


edge of the area, she goes down. The referee had a really long look at


that. Loud appeals from Chelsea but no penalty. The crowd are rarely are


not happy about this decision. She stuck her foot out, that's a


penalty. Forward here. Scott. Not the greatest of pass backs and it is


an own goal! And in such a crucial game, a London derby, so important


for both of these sides, it is quite simply an awful way for Arsenal to


go a goal behind. I just think it was lack of concentration really.


She fed the ball out, got it back, a disappointing concede for Arsenal.


What a wonderful ball. Spence can make it two! Great save by the


keeper, needed to show a response to the way that Arsenal conceded the


opener, and there is one. Mitchell forward from left back,


darting run by Carter. It comes off Blondel, and to Carter. Corner kick


to Arsenal. Williams will take it now. It is an


equalising goal for Arsenal! Really well work set piece routine. The


movement, she just manages to get in front of the player a little bit


bigger than her. Just that little movement, gets her head on it,


terrific ball. Almost got to that, stretching for


it. Spence. Rafferty strikes one. Bright


is in there, and Flaherty, the stand-in captain is as well.


Dangerous moments, these for Arsenal. Sliced shot by Farhi. It is


brilliant, and saved by the keeper. The way she can move the ball. As a


defender you don't want to lunge in because you just take her out. You


would give away a penalty. Chelsea trying to keep the gunners tend in


here. Bailey. She has Spence in support. The is true Spence. Tries


to disguise the passport Aluko! What a hit. Arsenal are hanging on here.


Two excellent pieces of play in. Aluko was stretching. Just the frame


of the goal. Blondel. Full of running. She has got that as well,


Aluko worked in the middle, what a chance. Glorious opportunity for


Chelsea to take the lead. Instant impact from


Now Arsenal at the other end of threatening. Great chance, tight


angle, it didn't matter! Hit is an absolutely sensational finish! From


the talented Dutch, Daniela Vanderpool. Brilliantly taken. A


great goal to win any game. Can they hold onto it, Arsenal? Jie, it is


true to Aluko! Saved by the keeper and behind for a corner. She might


have made the mistake that C's coral, but since then she has made


two or three games save in saves. To be cruelly undone with an


opportunity where we get the opportunity to go to- one up, and


they go down the opposite end and score in transition. I did thing I


have been involved in a cooler game. We were the better team, our game


plan was effective, we created the most clear-cut chances. In all


fairness, our goalkeeper hasn't had a save to make any we are on the


losing side. We had a blatant penalty in the first time but he


wasn't brave enough to make the difference. At this level it is a


clear problem. MSAs felt that Chelsea were the better side, how do


you feel about that? It goes back to when you talk about possessions that


and how money shot should have had on goal, but we were clinical, we


had the chances and finish them. But you did not get off to the best


start. I wanted to give the guy is a talking point! As soon as the ball


came to me, I was getting close down, by Rafferty and Aluko, for my


eyeliner, I knew where the goalkeeper was, but she had moved.


It is my mistake. I know as a defender, and Rachel will back me


up, you don't play the ball back to the goal. It is my fault. Rachel,


you are wincing watching that. You play the ball, you give a supporting


angle, and the goalkeeper did that, and as Alex said, the ball should be


played to the outside of the post. It is a misplaced pass but you did


not expected to end up in the goal, and it shouldn't have done. Moving


on, Chelsea have conceded more goals so far than they did the rest of


last season, was there anything particular you are targeting? If


it's interesting MSAs talking about the game and -- their game plan,


because -- it interesting that MS holies was talking about it. We knew


there would be vulnerable down the channels. From our second goal that


is where you see that. You got your equaliser from a set piece, letters


take a look. It was beautiful, the flight of the ball from Pharrell


Williams. It is that that Jade Bailey should be covering, the


chances and a half. But it is the timing of her run, she takes away


from true Spence, who was marking her. The speed of that ball whipped


in from Williams. All she has to do is change the direction of the ball


and it goes in. Just her energy and movement, she is pointing to where


she wants the ball. You have to say, Natalia as well, the weight of that


pass and to finish at that acute angle. It is beautiful. From the


goalie's out of you, she comes out but doesn't go smashing down at the


player. If you decide to go, you have got to wipe out the ball and


the player and take one or the other. It is the last minute of the


game and ultimately that is what cost Chelsea. Going into this game


as well, we were worried about Chelsea in the transition phase. So


if we attack, them coming straight back at Assen it is funny that we


did that to them for the second goal. Emma Hayes was quoted as


saying that women's football deserves a better standard of


officials after seeing her side denied a penalty. What do you think?


Definitely a penalty. Gemma Davison is clever, makes the players commit


and Emma Mitchell does leave a foot out. Whether it makes football with


Gemma Davison, whether she is playing for it, doesn't matter. The


assistant referee is in a great position to help them out and it is


a penalty. I suppose Chelsea feel hard done by, losses and they were


getting those goals but they are not now, but that is football. We


complain during the Cisma should have had penalty calls but in the


game it went away. The referees are National League standard. Is that


the right level in the WSL? I didn't think so, the game has moved on.


Maybe two or three years ago it was, but now teams are fully professional


teams and it should be reflected in the standard of referees. They


should be at least football league standard. Going into these big games


as well, it could go either way from a poor decision and that is not fair


on the way the women's game is going. Emma Hayes was heated but it


was also pretty hot of the Arsenal dressing at half-time. Over to you,


Alex, what was going on? I'm not going to name no names, but as we


were walking into the changing room at half-time, one of our players


heard their staff saying make sure the heating is turned up. So we


thought if you are doing that, we will do the team talk outside.


Whether they were going to do that or not, we don't know.


We head to the Midlands next, where Birmingham were aiming


to extend their eight match unbeaten run, when they faced Sunderland.


In the commentary box for us was Nigel Adderley.


Commentary macro aside from the title race Birmingham's resurgence


is one of the talks of the season. Carlton Fairweather has switched to


three at the back. Stephanie Roche drops to the bench to allow Stefanie


Banner to return. Sunderland would have been mightily relieved to


finally get their first league win of the season against Doncaster last


week. It will be tough here today. Birmingham don't score many, they


concede even fewer, and here is Wellings. Strong enough to ride the


initial challenge, and she then goes beyond Haley Sharp. A fine save from


ritual laws. Charlie Wellings, one of the youngsters who has really


shone this season for Birmingham. Allen stands firm, then Stringer


becomes involved. It just threatens to get a wee bit nasty before the


referee gives the free kick. That is a decent delivery! And their


header from havoc is kept out again by Laws. Birmingham to make the most


of set pieces. Brown's throw in. It falls to


Staniforth. Now Chaplain, possibilities here for Sunderland.


Furness with the shot, which was a trundle in the end. And routine for


the keeper. One of a number of new players, which have transformed this


Birmingham team. Once again, Birmingham are a very junior ball


unit but they do have some quality and here is Lawley, and she has


played in the Heather Berg. An excellent block to deny the


Norwegian international. Sunderland finally smuggle the ball clear.


Looking for her first league goal. Terrific defending from Hayley


Sharp. Birmingham's leading goal scorer


this season, even though she only has three. And now Lawley, who has


really shone so far today. And a deflection, close to an own goal,


and it was Stefanie Bannen at the near post. She will be great for


ritual laws was alert to the danger. Carter. -- Rachael Burrows. The


initial ball was caught out. Here is Lyndon. Appeals for handball as it


strikes Bannen, but nothing given by the referee. The German


international quickly into the action and the arms were raised.


Here is Lawley once again. She is too quick. It is another terrific


cross. The final touch was gratefully dropped on.


The girls have worked as hard as they have. Given the way that a goal


from a set piece, we had opportunities to clear it and we


didn't. Against a team like Birmingham, you will get punished.


Everyone knows we are good at the back and organised but I want to see


more goals, more attacking play from us, get in more advanced options and


be more expressive and Nepal. We are starting to do that on the break


now, moving forward. We have different dynamics in the group and


I want people to start recognising the quality we have here and what we


are building as a couple club. Birmingham got the win but they have


to be patient. Sunderland will be disappointed, having stood firm to


88 minutes. They will, because that has been Sunderland's problem, not


only not scoring but licking a lot of goals. To hold firm for the


majority of the game, to leak it from a set piece they will be


disappointed. A long throw from Jess Carter into the box. This should go


forward. It should go out of the box, high and wide header. It ends


up causing the Sunderland goalkeeper a problem, backpedalling, tips it


onto the bar and who react? Young Charlie Wellings. She must be so


excited. She reacts and the defenders don't. When you know the


team has a long throw, sometimes you turn to over concentrate on the


first phase of the set play when it is really the second of it that you


can be undone by and that is what happened with Sunderland.


We heard David Parker wanting Birmingham to be more progressive on


the ball. Birmingham have done well the first part of the season. She's


come in and she's been in the league for years because she's so direct


when she gets the ball, she uses it so effectively. She looks, her first


ball is forward. Sometimes players can play side ways or backwards.


That can put you under pressure. She's got everything in the armoury,


she can spray the ball out wide. She plays one and two touches. She moves


off the ball really well. We've seen her in other games organising the


team around her. A lovely little dip of the shoulder and a switch of


play. She's pretty much everywhere and central to everything that


Birmingham are doing. She's also, you know, creating chances for


herself and those goals will come. We talked about officiating earlier


in the show. It wasn't as costly for Birmingham, but should they have had


a penalty? No, definitely not. It would have been harsh. When we see


the clip, the Sunderland defender, as the ball strikes her hand is in


front of her chest. It wouldn't make any difference to the direction of


the ball. For me, completely no penalty at all. I agree with Rachel


there. I would have felt hard done by. The right decision there.


Notts County faced a tricky trip to in-form Liverpool


They had, however, beaten the Reds in their previous four encounters.


Notts count yay rived at the stadium searching for their first away win


this season. They came close to taking the lead early on. This


glancing header cleared off the line by Alex Greenwood. The reds required


more last ditch defending later. Potter picking out Clark. Her cross


turned behind with both White and Williams ready to pounce. Liverpool


were unbeat anyone their previous four WSL 1 games and began to grow


into the match. Last week's goal scorers against Reading combined.


But unable to test the keeper with this effort. The goal was under


threat again. The home continued to create chances after the break. A


superb delivery into the box. Unable to make the most of an excellent


opportunity. Notts County will be without their first-choice


goalkeeper following surgery for an ankle injury.


Liverpool then just about in touch with the chasing pack.


Despite not playing for two weeks, Manchester City still


And the inconsistency of fixtures was on the agenda


at Wembley last week, as the FA made a huge announcement


April 2011 provided a watershed moment for women's


In a move to professionalise the game, the Football Association


launched the WSL, its first ever semi-professional league,


which would be played between April and October.


After five years of significant growth, both on and off the pitch,


the FA reconvened at the national stadium last week to unveil


its latest blueprint for the future of the women's game.


Following the euros in 2017, we'll go into a winter season, which will


start in September and end in May. It will mirror the men's season.


You've got to remember that the rest of the women's football period is in


the winter. I don't just mean the senior pyramid, grass-roots. When


you look at aligning competitions and moving young players through the


levels, it's a bit more easy when they play at the same time. We hope


this can be a game changer. It gives a chance to kick off.


To remove the prospect of a ten-month period


without competitive football ahead of the European Championships,


a one-off transitional competition will be played,


Each side will play each other once in a league format with no


relegation between February and June 2017, before the new format


begins in September, which will also include


We think it will be easier to get a more consistent fixture programme


that will get better and more regular access to grounds and that


we hope to build a high performance system for players to achieve


wearing their England shirt. I look at it as an international manager. I


look at player welfare, making sure we give our players every possible


chance with the best athlete and player they can be and give the


teams to be better teams and players. As a natural result the


national team will improve as well. We've made a courageous call. It


might not work out for us, but we have to make the decisions we feel


are right to give this team every possible chance of winning European


Championships and winning world cups on a consistent basis. To do that we


need a strong, vibrant, successful women's Super League. We want it to


be an iconic competition for women so that we see women athletes at


their very best, you know, competitive, fit, healthy,


technically, tactically good, so that young girls look at that and


say, you know, crikey, I want to be one of those. That's what we want,


we want an iconic league. Lots of factors have been taken into


account. Player welfare is a key priority, do you understand why the


change has been made? I do. From a players' perspective, it has been


frustrating with the fixtures. Can you go for periods without having a


game for two, three weeks. Then you are playing three off the back.


That's been the main thing. We'd like to see more consistency. I know


the winter league will help. I know what Mark's meaning when he touches


on player welfare. When you're playing so many fixtures


back-to-back and catching up, you don't get the quality time to do


your gym work or time on the pitch to develop as a player. So I think


with more consistency in the fixtures that will help players.


Mark Samson has said he will have more time with the players and


they'll be match tough. Why? Yeah, to clarify that. Some of the


fixtures, the domestic fixtures won't be butted together with the


international fixtures. After an Arsenal game, for instance, there'll


be a couple of days where they get a chance to recover. They will go into


camp fresh and can have good, efficient and quality time together


as a squad preparing for a game. Hopefully that will look after


players and they will avoid injury. Will that make a difference when it


comes to winning major tournaments? Definitely. If you're making the


league stronger, that improves your national players. That makes the


England team better. Like I just said, I think it goes back to the


point, the regular training, the regular work, you have time to do


that. If you're playing constant fixtures you haven't because it's


about recovery. They should make teams more competitive when it comes


to the Champions League, which has a winter schedule. It aligns the


league with the likes of the German and French league, who are all


perennial challengers for the Champions League trophy. Hopefully


it will give our Champions League teams the best chance of peaking at


the right time to start winning silverware in that department. So


this is all good. But what are the challenges? What needs to happen for


this to be a success? My only concern is with the summer league


you have families coming to the gale and switching to the winter league


will they continue to come when it's freezing cold. It's English weather


for you - that could be happening right now! You hope for women's


football it's such a brave decision, I hope it pushes women's football to


the next level. We want the women's game to keep moving to new levels.


Compared to five years ago, when the summer league was launched, one of


the reasons was because of better availability of pitches. Because the


standards have improved, we have better facilities, the pitches won't


be an issue. Having them in the winter, yes the weather will be


poor, but the standard of the surface is better. Look at


Borehamwood, it's a wonderful surface. Look the Manchester City,


brand new stadium, great pitch. Hopefully, pitches will not be an


issue. Overall, what would your assessment be? I love the fact that


it's aligned with the men's league, so they can use the commercial value


of men's clubs to really enhance the spotlight of women's football. So


it's not going to be overshadowed bit men's playing. It will be


enhanced. The resources at the disposal of the women's clubs go


hand in hand with the men's. Any promotional material, the women's


teams can be jump on the back of the men's teams. It remains to be seen


which sides from WSL 2 will start the new winter calendar in the top


flight. Just enough time for a bit


of action from WSL2. Leaders Yeovil travelled


to Everton on Sunday, but they come unstuck,


as the Toffees bounced back from successive defeats


with a commanding performance. Chloe Kelly setting her side


on the way to a 3-0 win That moves Everton to win six points


of Yeovil. Andy Spence's side also still have


two games in hand on the Glovers. Just enough time to reveal that


England's next home game, where they will look to secure top


spot in Euro Qualifying Group 7 against Estonia, will be played


at Notts County's Meadow Lane You'll be able to see that game live


on the BBC TWO at 7.05pm. Before that, we're back next


Monday with highlights from Manchester City's trip


to Notts County - 23.15 on BBC Two So plenty of change ahead


for the Women's Super League, but one thing is sure to remain


the same: the race to become champions of WSL1 is going to be


just as thrilling as ever.


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