Women’s Super League gets huge financial boost

By Tony Attwood

We’ve not been able to cover this season of the women’s game in the way that we have done in the past, and indeed there have been times when we’ve wondered if the WSL wasn’t teetering on the brink as we’ve not been the only ones who have had trouble getting information.

But the news of a new financial deal from Sky and the BBC to cover the game from next season means effectively that the league has been rescued.

It has not been a season like the old days, as Arsenal have sunk some distance behind the two clubs that have all the money and simply go out and buy all the best players: Chelsea and Manchester City, and as the league table shows they have just pulled ahead into a minileague of two all on their own. 

It is of course what happens when competition goes out the window and the ability to spend any amount of money needed, is allowed to remain unfettered.  As a result both clubs have in the last couple of games beaten Arsenal and indeed everyone else except each other.

Manchester United have made a bit of an effort to cling on, with Arsenal now fourth in the League.  Although we should notice that in terms of goal scoring Arsenal are right up there with Chelsea and Manchester City. 

And indeed the third team in the league, Manchester United, were recently beaten by Arsenal, which is a positive sign.  Here’s the table.

Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1  Chelsea Women 17 14 2 1 52 8 44 44
2  Manchester City Women 17 13 3 1 54 11 43 42
3  Manchester Utd Women 17 11 2 4 35 18 17 35
4  Arsenal Women 16 10 2 4 50 14 36 32
5  Everton Women 17 7 4 6 30 25 5 25
6  Brighton & Hove Albion Women 17 6 3 8 15 30 -15 21
7  Reading Women 17 4 8 5 21 27 -6 20
8  Tottenham Hotspur Women 17 4 5 8 19 29 -10 17
9  Birmingham City Women 16 3 3 10 12 33 -21 12
10  Aston Villa Women 15 3 1 11 11 39 -28 10
11  Bristol City Women 17 2 4 11 14 61 -47 10
12  West Ham Women 15 2 3 10 16 34 -18 9

The TV deal runs for three years starting from next season and will see the BBC and Sky pay £8m to the clubs overall – apparently the largest deal for the women’s game anywhere in the world.

The report says that Sky Sports will show over 40 games live each season, with some of them on Sky One as well as on its football channels for which extra payment is required for the Sky Sports package.  The idea is the three games will be shown in each found of matches with two on Sky and one on the BBC.

The aim from Sky is to give the women’s matches the same sort of build up as they provide for the men’s game.  The aim for the Women’s SuperLeague is to use the process to raise awareness and enthusiasm for the game, through the presentation being on an equal footing with the men’s game.

The BBC will have the games on their main channels of BBC One and BBC Two.   The games will be spread across four times – Friday evening, Saturday lunchtime, Sunday lunchtime, Sunday evening,

Date Home team Away team Res Score 
07/02/21 Arsenal Manchester City L 1 – 2
10/02/21 Chelsea Arsenal L 3 – 0
28/02/21 Aston Villa Arsenal W 0 – 4
07/03/21 Birmingham City Arsenal W 0 – 4
19/03/21 Arsenal Manchester United W 2 – 0

2 Replies to “Women’s Super League gets huge financial boost”

  1. Currently there is one game each Matchweek on BT Sport and one on the BBC Sport channel available on TV through their red button service or on line.

    The remaining games are available live on line through the FAPlayer app but coverage is restricted to a single camera and there are no replays. If games are not being broadcast more widely in your part of the World the FAPlayer is not, as far as I am aware geoblocked. You will need to set up an account (free) and then log on to watch. It also gives you access to earlier matches so you can catch up if you missed a game..

    We have been badly hit with injuries this year and have rarely had a full squad to chose from, frequently not having a full bench. To a degree this is ongoing from the last couple of seasons which is something of a worrying trend.

    Our four losses have been against Man City (2-1 both home and away), Chelsea (3-0 away and Man United (1-0 away). Our two draws were both 1-1 at home to Chelsea and away to Reading. The only two games which we never looked like winning were the Losses to. Chelsea and Man United. Both of those teams play a particular style of football with constant physical contact and extreme pressing which is either legal or not depending on the view of the referee on the day. Whilst I don’t like it the officials seem to allow it so it is something that we will have to get used to on the training pitch and find a way of overcoming.

    Reading are the only side outside the top four to have taken points off us. If that continues we should win our outstanding fixtures against Spurs, Bristol City, Brighton, Everton, Aston Villa and West Ham. Doing so would ensure a third place finish and Champions League football for next year. Failure to get that level of football will brobably mean that it will be difficult to keep our top players who are already coveted by the top European clubs as well as City, Chelsea and United.

    I would hope that this service will continue

  2. Sorry, the last line got detached from the second paragraph typing on an iPad)

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