Preview of Arsenal v Birmingham and other WSL matches, 4 November

by Andrew Crawshaw

There are, as usual five Women’s Super League Matches this weekend, all this afternoon.  Arsenal begin proceedings at Borehamwood in the early 12:30 match, followed at 14:00 by Liverpool v Man City and Reading v Bristol and at 15:00 there are Yeovil v Everton and West Ham v Chelsea.  Brighton sit out this round of matches (there are 11 teams in the league).

Here is the current table:-

Team P W D L +/- Pts
1 Arsenal 6 6 0 0 28 18
2 Man City 7 4 3 0 17 15
3 Birmingham 6 4 1 1 3 13
4 Chelsea 7 2 4 1 -2 10
5 Liverpool 6 3 0 3 -4 9
6 Reading 6 2 2 2 -2 8
7 Bristol 6 2 2 2 -3 8
8 West Ham 6 2 1 3 -6 7
9 Brighton 7 1 1 5 -10 4
10 Everton 5 0 2 3 -6 2
11 Yeovil 6 0 0 6 -15 0

It is fair to say that, so far, Arsenal are by far the best team in the league, not only unbeaten but having won all of our games and with a goal record of 31 scored and 3 conceded.  Man City in second place are also unbeaten but have drawn three games out of 7. 

Chelsea, last season’s champions and the other team who one would expect to be challenging again this year have had an underwhelming start to the season but picked themselves up from the 5 – 0 thrashing we inflicted on them to win their second match of the campaign last week.  Birmingham are to a large extent the surprise team so far this season in third place.

Arsenal v Birmingham 12:30 Borehamwood.  This match is being shown live (in UK) via the BBC red button service and BBL on-line.  If you are within travelling distance of Borehamwood you can also get tickets on the gate at £10 or £5 for concesions (U16, O65s and disabled).

Arsenal have the most potent offence in the league and are averaging over 5 goals a game.  In Miedema we have the best striker who on her own is averaging nearly 2 goals a game and has 2 hat-tricks in the league so far.  We also have the most potent goalscoring midfield who in Jordan Nobbs, Danielle van de Donk and the injured Kim Little have contributed 15 goals and 8 assists in out 6 matches.

Birmingham have specialised this year in the one-nil win.  They have only scored 6 goals but have only conceded three (the same as us)  in their 6 games they have won 4 drawn and lost one.  In the past few meetings Birmingham have always been very difficult to beat, defend well in numbers and pose a threat on the counter attack

The two best defences in the league will be on display but there is no question that we have by far the most potent attack.  If we play anywhere near our capability then I would expect us to win this match but I will be surprised if it will be by more than one or two goals.

Liverpool v Man City  

Liverpool had a torrid start to the season, they had to undertake a major squad rebuild in summer as Man United (amongst others) raided them.  Their newly appointed manager left before the season started and they started in absolute chaos.  Their performances have been getting better and their record is W6 and L6.  They are struggling to score goals with only 4 and have conceded 8.

Man City haven’t started as well as I would have expected, although unbeaten they have dropped points by drawing 3 matches against mid-table opponents who I would have expected them to beat.  They are the second highest scoring team with 23 out of their 7 matches and I would expect them to have too much firepower for Liverpool.

Reading v Bristol

Both teams are in mid table with virtually identical numbers only separated by goal difference Reading having conceded one fewer.  This game is really too close to call but I will go for Reading to make home advantage tell and win by an odd goal with both sided scoring.

Yeovil v Everton  

Yeovil have yet to win a match in the WSL either last season or this and have a terrible defence conceding on average 3 goals per game coupled with a poor attack.  Everton, this year have a similarly poor attack (both teams have only scored 4 goals ) and a slightly better defence conceding on average 2 goals per game.  I have a feeling that this game at home probably represents Yeovil’s best chance of getting some points this season and I suspect that they will probably score a goal which will be enough to earn a point.

West Ham v Chelsea

Both teams have only won two matches this season and Chelsea have scored the fewest goals in the competition with 3.  West Ham have scored 8 in their 6 games.  Chelsea have only conceded in one game where they shipped 5 against Arsenal whilst West Ham are letting in 2.5 per game.  It can only be a matter of time before Chelsea’s strikers rediscover the back of the net and I think that it could be today.  Chelsea to win this match with 3 or more goals.

I will add updates on the progress of our game at Borehamwood as the afternoon proceeds.  Normally I would be there but today I will be at home.


25 Replies to “Preview of Arsenal v Birmingham and other WSL matches, 4 November”

  1. BBC Red Button coverage just started


    Evans, Williamson, Quinn, Mitchell
    Van de Donk, Nobbs
    McCabe, Mead, Miedema


    Van Veenendaal, Bloodworth, Samuelsson, kucken and Kemme

    So a first appearance for Tabea Kemme who has made the bench as she returns from injury.

  2. 15 minutes in and goalless so far. Nothing for either keeper to do so far . We are not looking as sharp as we usually are. Both teams cancelling each other out

    Good support from the crowd as usual.

  3. Good save from Berger in the Birmingham goal on 30 minutes resulting in a corner. Nobbs fires straight at Berger as the ball comes to her in the corner of the 18 yard box.

    Birmingham getting away with a number of niggling fouls.

    Better spell from Arsenal but still no score

  4. Referees being accurate and fair?

    > 3 min: They’re looking feisty too, Mead felled by a hard early challenge from which she takes time to get up. That’s followed by another niggly foul and I wonder if that’s part of the gameplan.

    Fair commentating?

    > … Follis is slightly harshly, perhaps, penalised for a foul as she looks to take on her opponent and run into the Arsenal box.

    Is it fair to allow one team to be rough, and then complain at a slight discretion being called?

    Guardian seems to be mostly supporting Birmingham in this commentary.

  5. Half time and there are still no goals. Arsenal growing into the game as the half progressed.

    We need to be more positive in the second half, so farit is a very even contest

  6. A twit mentioning that Ivan Gazidis is in the crowd today. Still on his way to Milan, or did he come back to watch the women?


  7. @Gord

    This referee I’d demonstrably a relative of Mike Dean – anything but balanced and honest. Wearing FIFA accreditation as well

    Good chance for Nobbs in min 56. Another save from Mead in min 57 them Nobbs makes it one nil in min 59

    Oh crap Birmingham equalise immediately so 1-q

  8. Min 67 and we retake the lead foul on McCabe in the penalty area which even this ref can’t ignite. Danielle Van de Donk made no mistake.

    Now we need to take the heat out of the game for a few minutes

  9. 78 mins and Jess Samuelsson comes on for Katie McCabe who has an ice pack on her knee

    Entering the last 10 minutes with I guess four or five to be added on

  10. From the Guardian description, there should be extra discipline on that card. Players get hurt when forced into the advertising.


  11. Leah Walti player of the game. Mead off and Tabea Kemme makes her Arsenal debut and five minutes added time

  12. Guardian whinging that Mead has been on the ground needing treatment 3 times this game. Obviously it was self-inflicted each time, right?


  13. That’s it and we keep our 100% record. Played seven, won seven. Goals for 34 against 4

    The penalty was for a foul on Lisa Evans, not McCabe as I said earlier.

    Gord, I think that a challenge that ends up with a player striking the hoardings with force should be a red rather than a yellow card. We lost a player last year for several weeks through such an injury.

  14. Congratulations Gunners!


    I’m sitting here, going through old data making sure it is correct.

    I think I will tweak “caution” a bit.
    1. If a team receives a yellow card at minute N, the team gets 90-N minutes of caution added.
    2. If a player receives a second yellow at time M, 90-M minutes of caution is applied to that team.
    3. If a player receives a straight red at time N, 2(90-N) minutes of caution is applied.
    4. If a team has a penalty given against it (scored or not) at time N, 90-N minutes of caution is applied to the team.

    5. If a team has a player down needing treatment and that player is off the pitch for N minutes, caution of 2N is applied (unless self inflicted?).
    6. If a team has a player down needing treatment, and that player is either substituted immediately, or substituted a minute or two later at minute N, a caution of (90-N)/6 will be applied. A team has 3 substitutions, so this says we are “wasting” half a substitution.

    I think the longest I have seen a player off the pitch needing treatment this season is 10 minutes. Adding 20 minutes of caution would be reasonable?

  15. Half time in the 14:00 kickoffs

    Liverpool 0 – Man City Women 0

    Reading 1 – Bristol 0 (Fara Williams 32)

    If things stay like this then our lead over City goes to 5 plus a game in hand

  16. Full time in the 14:00 matches

    Liverpool 0 – Man City 3(Fahey og 50, Parris 50 and 85 pen)

    Reading 3 – Bristol p (Willian’s 32 and 50, Chaplin 65)

    Half tome in the 15:00 matches;-

    West Ham 0 – Chelsea 0

    Yeovil 1 – Everton 0

  17. In the last two WSL games Chelsea have just won 2 – 0 against West Ham both goals scored by Bachmann in the 62 and 85th Minute.

    Yeovil have indeed won their first WSL game beating Everton 1 – 0. They have also climbed above Everton in the table.

    Overall not a bad set of predictions, should have put a bet on!

  18. Hi Andrew
    just bought three tickets for the Brighton home game. Hopefully the missus and my step daughter will come along, otherwise I’ll have two spares on the day!

  19. Anyone can shed a light on what happened to WSL? 9 out of 11 teams can barely score once per game
    i remember Liverpool, Birmingham and Chelsea being way more fun in previous seasons

    wth with your filters guys btw, i can’t see my comments

Comments are closed.