Episode 7 The Women's Football Show

Episode 7

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Good evening. It is the final weekend of the WSL Spring series.


Things could not be tighter. Coming up: Chelsea knew victory at


Birmingham would give them the interim title. All the action from a


tense afternoon in the Midlands. Liverpool are Manchester City were


waiting in the wings, ready to pounce should a chance presents


itself. The only unbeaten team in the league, Arsenal could still had


a slim hope of glory as they travelled to Bristol City. Welcome


to a show packed with a million and one permutations. Welcome to both of


you. Since the WSL Spring series began only six weeks ago, we have


had more in our share of thrills and spills. One team has edged ahead.


The free kick and it is in. It is all coming together for Chelsea.


Paris into Duggan. Duggan with the finish.


Duggan. That was tremendous. That is genius. A shot from range. It is in.


Amazing. Spence 7-0. Stanway, she takes the title back for city.


Bachmann, still bagmen. It is the Blues to lose now. Chelsea went into


their match at Birmingham in pole position. The Blues have no margin


for error. A win and the title is theirs. Birmingham boss Mark Skinner


says he is used to the Spring Series to get to know his new charges. He


makes four changes. Defensively they have been extremely well drilled and


are expecting to be out of possession for long periods in the


game for the Chelsea rested key players ahead of the game today.


Kirby still feeling her way back to full match sharpness after injury.


A good ball towards curbing. She has made a mess of that. Is it a


penalty? Yes. Once she missed time do and got the player and not the


ball, the referee had no choice. That was some bravery. She did not


move. A yellow card inevitably following. I don't think it would


ever have been a red card situation but booking was on its way. I don't


think anyone would argue that was a penalty. The former Birmingham City


star, Karen Carney, with the responsibility of giving Chelsea the


lead on a day when victory would give them the title. And she tucks


it in. Saw the keepers shifting away one way and helped it in fairly


centrally in the back of the net. She was a good goalkeeper but it was


really well struck. Chelsea straight back into possession again. Kirby


and Ji combining well. Chapman in support. Good wing play and the


cross is a good one. Header over the top from Davidson. Just seemed to


get in each other's way. I think it was Ji. She could not get a firm


header on it. Not a bad effort. That was clever. Tried to float one over


the top. A clever ball. Lovely. A great save.


That would have been a goal worthy of lifting the title. It was a


brilliant move. Everything about it just said quality.


It was well worked. That was dangerous. The keeper missed it and


they score. Chelsea have a firm grip on the title now. They know they'd


probably have the crown. Excellent build-up play by Chelsea. Horrendous


mistake. Completely misjudged. Hit the post. Allowed for Kirby to get


in there. Not mistake you would expect from the keeper.


Over the top. Another brilliant move that deserved a finish. Quality


touches from the likes of Kirby and Ji.


That was nice from Ji. Still could not get it beyond burger. -- the


keeper. Great play. Just could not get


beyond the keeper. Just holding back the celebrations, which can now


begin in earnest. Chelsea are the WSL Spring Series champions of 2017.


They needed to win today and in reality that was never in doubt once


Karen Carney had dispatched the 22nd minute penalty and when Kirby added


a second early in the second half, the destiny of the title was


assured. They will and the campaign top of the pile, having scored the


most goals, having conceded the fewest number as well. It is hard to


argue that Chelsea have been anything other than the best in the


WSL Spring Series. They are the champions and have done what they


needed to do. Final score, Birmingham- zero - two. Katie


Chapman gets to the front of the squad. They are the champions. About


three, four years ago I missed a penalty that cost us the lead. I was


adamant I would not make the same mistake again. She is a top quality


keeper. We were a bit slow to start, which is not like us. It was credit


to Birmingham. It is important with a club like Chelsea, we want to


continue to play our part in that. I believe it is a justification for


the work we did in the off-season and recruitment and most importantly


the new players and existing players. They have raised their


game. I am so proud of the players. We have shown we are the top team in


the country. We have finished top of the Spring Series. This is our one.


We have earned it and deserve it. We have perhaps stopped the run at a


little bit. It went down to the wire. Word Chelsea worthy winners?


Absolutely. They have been such a force. The recruitment has been


phenomenal. The goals they have scored. The likes of Ramona


Bachmann. Kirby in these last three games has come back and looked


really sharp. Goals are coming from everywhere. The quality and they


have only let in three goals this season and scored 32. That shows you


how they are blowing teams away. That is championship winning form.


In terms of goals, they are coming from right across the front line. It


is right across. In the Chelsea team they have an omnipresent offence. A


special mention as to go to Andrew Spence. Spence has had a massive


impact. What weaknesses did you look at in the Chelsea team it does not


seem like they had many. You must have found an area to exploit? One


of our strengths is to attack as well. We wanted to get at their


defence. There was space down the side because they were playing a


wingback system and that is how he managed to penetrate. They knew the


title was in their hands and their patience should be commended. In


terms of Birmingham, will it be a frustrating Spring Series for them


or is this transition period something that should be expected?


There have been transitional elements to Birmingham. If they are


up against such a great Chelsea side, they are strong. There have


been times when FA WSL Spring Series has not started and Chelsea looked a


lesser force. Her intricate play. -- when Ji did not start. She threaded


the ball through. Kirby has come back and looked sharp. The ball


drifts out wide. Stays unmarked for those whole


passage of play. A terrible error by the goalkeeper. Pops up with another


goal. She will not get an easier finish than that. Congratulation to


Chelsea ladies. Manchester City needed a win at Liverpool to


guarantee second spot. The Reds have surprised many with their form and


had a chance to lay down a major mark against a city side whose


challenge for the trophy has faltered over the past couple of


weeks. Let's run you through the teams.


Liverpool went from first to fourth after a heavy 7-0 defeat at Chelsea


last weekend. Casey Stoney is out with a knock, and Eve Charles


Cousins and left back. Jess Clarke also starts up front. Man City got a


stoppage time winner at Sunderland to move level with Chelsea on


points. Five changes for them, Lucy Bronze and Toni Duggan are back in


the starting line-up, as is Kylie Lloyd, making what is set to be her


final appearance of the city after serving a three match suspension.


WHISTLE Hodson with the throw. It is touched


on by Harding, and spilt by the goalkeeper, and helped away, a good


opportunity for Liverpool to take the lead. Only half dealt with by


Marie Hourihan. City have had six wins in the last ten meetings


between these two sides. It is a decent effort and comfortable save


in the end from Chamberlain, she had to watch it all the way.


Well, Bonner has been closed down there. Lloyd has been in support, a


neat turn, and just wide. Good play by the England striker, couldn't


quite wrap her foot around it enough. .


Bronze wins the header, a bit of space to run into here, and Charles


gets back to concede the corner kick. Toni Duggan with the delivery.


And in by Jill Scott. From all of half a yard. Just touched in with


her head, causing all problems therefore Siobhan Chamberlain, and


Jill Scott gives Manchester City the lead at Liverpool. S Clark does


really well to capitalise on that hesitation from Horton, and Harding


wins the corner kick for Liverpool. Bonner, and that was a good, low


delivery from Harding. Gemma Bonner nearly got herself on the scoresheet


once again, already three goals this season. A chance for city here to


double their lead. Lawley with the effort, and


beautiful goal! Mel Lawley with a stunner to double Manchester City's


lead in stoppage time of half-time, her first goal of the Spring series


for her new club, and that is a beauty. And City making their second


substitution of the afternoon, Megan Campbell getting ready to come on.


It looks like it is going to be a straight swap for left-back with


Demi Stokes. Another England international withdrawn.


Here is only key to Paris for Manchester City, and Parris


complaining to the rest about something, she felt that Charles


Cortois, too. Here is Megan Campbell with the free kick for Manchester


City, and it has gone in! Megan Campbell with her first goal for


Manchester City. Her reaction suggests she didn't mean that, but


either way, Manchester City now have a 3-goal lead against Liverpool, and


the Republic of Ireland International celebrates her first


goal for the club. Charles has a run down the far side, but Parris shows


her pace and is equal to it. Charles is held back by Parris, and wins the


free kick. Combs with the delivery, towards


Clark, and what a chance. Free header for Jess Clarke, and she has


put it wide of the post. Harding, she only has Clark in the


middle. Got to get past Campbell first. Here is Caroline Weir. And in


off the post! And Liverpool have their consolation. It looks like


that took her Rihan by surprise little bit. But it is deserved. We


are disappointed we haven't won it, but we are realists, we have had


17-day breaking 16 weeks, but only lose one game in the spring series,


we are proud of that. Today is Kylie Lloyd's last day before she heads


back to the US, how would you sum up her time with you? If our younger


players have even got 1% of her work ethic through playing with her, we


will be a better team and they will be better players. To me, City are


still champions. To win a season over nine games one we played five


when three at home, how can you compare that is a true reflection of


the lead? Today we played the champions. Fourth is a progression.


On the pitch we have been developing, we have played some of


the kids, we are happy with them and we are going in the right direction,


which are pleased with. I have had an amazing experience here. It has


been absolutely fantastic on so many different levels, and just super


proud that I could be a part of it, and I wish them all the best, it


will be weird to jump back in with my Houston team. So, Lloyd saying


her goodbyes to Manchester City, but how big an asset has she been for


the league at the profile of the women's game here? It is great, that


a player of her stature even wanted to come and play here, it shows the


growth of women's football in this country, and like you said already,


about the Mac city players learning from her work ethic, there is no ego


with her, it is all about how hard she works, and that mentality rubs


off on players, and the defensive players having to mark, what is her


movement like? To the whole league. Manchester City wanted to end the


season strongly and came up against Liverpool side who must a little


disappointed with their performance defensively. They have petered out a


little bit, and defensively they have been punished for their lax


defending. I think City were given lots of time, basically, to take


potshots, and this header from Jennifer Beattie, nobody picks up


Jill Scott, it was a simple header home. And this is a great strike,


from that angle it is difficult to get the ball up and over with so


much power in behind Siobhan Chamberlain. But again here,


Liverpool were indecisive, nobody gets tight, no pressure, and another


free shot, so I think that was the main problem for Liverpool. It has


been a demanding season for Manchester City, the spring series,


with the Champions League, the FA Cup run to the final. You have


experienced it at Arsenal. Out of is it? It is tough, but you can't use


it as an excuse. If you want to be champions Yaisien, year out, you


have to look at the depth of your squad, so you can't use it as an


excuse if you want to be the top team consistently, you have to be


able to produce. Indeed. Two more matches to catch up now, starting at


Stoke Gifford, where the beetle -- unbeaten Arsenal side took an Stoke


City. Six minutes after half-time, Arsenal


and England international Jodie Taylor Taider Jordan Nobbs to fire


in a second goal for the visitors. The vixens refused to be worn down,


Chloe Arthur nearly pulled one back, but Arsenal keeper Van de Donk


proved why she is capable Herath hands. Kelly scrambled a third for


Arsenal. Just five minutes later it was time for Arsenal to the fourth


to the scoreline, step forward Danielle van de Donk, her second


goal of the campaign. The late flurry of goals continued, and Van


de Donk this time linked up with Beth Mead who added a fifth and


final goal. Heavy defeat for the vixens, and a third-place finish an


unbeaten Arsenal. We planned this as a test for us to improve in our


competitiveness, to prove how solid we can be as a team, how many


performances with clean sheets can we put on? It is a clear


progression. Sunderland hosted Reading for their final game of the


campaign, and went ahead just before the half-time mark. But Sunderland


made Reading's defence look helpless as Beverley lie Leal brought the


score level. Lauren Bruton had looked good this season but failed


to take advantage of this clear run to take the lead. Reading were left


frustrated again laced on when Kirsty McGee had her shot denied. Of


the finish behind the top four teams is a full-time part-time outfit as


we are to compete against Reading, they are full-time. We held our own,


and if we can make some additions over the summer, I think we can


compete next year. So, Chelsea took the spoils on account of their


incredible goal difference, a superb campaign from Alex's Arsenal,


unbeaten and always in contention. Reading and Sunderland have held


their own throughout the mini season, but promoted Bristol City


and Yeovil must do better. Pedro men should progression in his post match


interview. It is clear to see that there is a progression at Arsenal.


Yes, especially this season, what you have seen as a teamwork ethic.


In the past we have relied on individuals and that hasn't been


there, but going forward we have new personnel to work on, we haven't had


a massive exodus of players in and out so we have a platform to build


on. For a lot of the teams, this has provided an opportunity to build


ahead of next season, but for the promoted teams, it is given them a


chance to see where they stand, and for the likes of Bristol City and


Yeovil Town, there is work to do? There is, but this gives them the


perfect opportunity to realise that if they didn't know before. Teams


like Yeovil and Bristol who know that because they are only part time


will be fighting it out to stay up in the league, they have admitted


that themselves, they need to work on their organisation, make


themselves difficult to breakdown. Reading are full-time now, they have


done that this whole season last season, very difficult to break


down, and that is a great start. Any team that has at this initial


experience of the spring series, but is unsure what they will take


forward. It was very exciting as well going all the way down to the


final day. What are the expectations for when the full season kicks in


over the winter? Can we expect this exciting finish again? Absolutely,


and it is great for the fans, it keeps them on the edge of their


seats and us as players. Every game is competitive, you know you have to


win, you can't slip up because the league tie, except away from you. On


the Champions League front, Manchester City represented the WSL


so well this season, Jill Scott Lucy Bronze were both awarded a place in


the women's Champions League squad of the season. Unsurprisingly it was


packed with members of the team who lifted the trophy last Thursday, and


it was a behaviour burg who was crowned BBC's women's Footballer of


the Year. Barring any injuries they will all be involved in the major


footballing event of the summer, the European Championships. From Mark


Sutton and England, expectation is high after the heroics of the 2015


World Cup. After naming his squad month in advance, Joe Curry found


the England coach happy with how it had worked out, especially with the


return of Fran Kirby. It is a big boost for everyone. It was a tough


one for Fran, but it is great to see her coming back and enjoying her


footballer doing what she does so well. And since you name Jill Scott,


Notts County has folded. That is affected four players. Three have


gone on and found teams, Laura Bassett has decided to stay a free


agent. How worried are you in terms of her fitness and not plain club


matches before the year is? It is nice to see Joe and Jade and Carly


in particular. We had a good conversation around what needs to be


done from when she made that call to when the European Championships


start, she is a model professional unsure understands where she needs


to be, she has been to so many tournaments in the past. She is on


the phone every day to the medical team and looks as working harder she


ever has done. Six weeks from the opening game against Scotland. How


much scope is therefore players to impress in training? There is always


scope, the group is such a tight-knit group and in terms of the


quality, there is not much between the players. We are not the type of


team where everyone in the world who can name our best 11, we are strong


group and some players will put hard yards in to put their hand up a


selection and make sure they are available physically and mentally.


We will be ready to put the best 11 out to beat Scotland.


We are fully aware of what it takes to win at these events and where we


fell short last time. We need to make sure the players are better


prepared this time. Look at the players we have now. We have players


who are used to winning at club level, international level. Since


the World Cup we achieved a bronze medal and we have had a 13 match


unbeaten run. We have beaten Germany and the USA. Only France and Japan


have beaten us. We know we can win when it really matters.


Psychologically we are a tough team. We have a tough manager. Team


bonding has always been such a big thing since he came in as manager.


How do you go about creating that atmosphere in the England team? We


have events in June and July. We're going to watch lame ears as a play.


Learning about what it takes to be the best in the field. They will put


the players through their paces. Most important, it is very


difficult. Who can sing a decent chin? We are really struggling. You


became the first time dad not so long ago. She will be out at some


point. That moment, if or when we win this tournament, I can bring her


on the field. That type of stuff makes you give 100%. We want to


provide a performance and behave and playing away young girls can look up


and respect, saying one day I want to be like that in the future. We


are excited by that challenge I hope my daughter will enjoy that as well.


It must all be feeling quite real now. I know you jet off for one of


your warm up games. What is it like being in a camp, preparing for a


tournament like this? How much are you looking forward to the singing.


I would have to warm up my vocal chords a bit. It is a massive summer


for us and it is finally here. We can put the spring season aside now.


We know if we go over we could change the face of women's football


in the country. That is pressure, a great pressure and we looking


forward to it. There is pressure and expectation on England. Not the same


for Scotland for that they have lost him little. What, for them, would be


realistic? Probably to get a win in that group stage would be initially


successful. I am sure they would be ambitious and tried to get out and


progress out of the group. The best chance is against Portugal. England


against Scotland as with the massive game. Where'd did they finished,


Scotland and England, in that group? I think England will finish top and


Scotland may finish third. We will take that. You'll be able to keep in


touch with all the Netherlands. There is another major tournament


unfolding nightly on the BBC. The best of the action from England


against New Zealand is on BBC Two this Tuesday evening from 1120. Blue


was the colour in the WSL Spring Series. Congratulations to Chelsea.


From all of us here, goodbye for now.


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