The relegation battle ep 10

The relegation battle is getting tighter and tighter with today’s result.

Cardiff 1 Sunderland 2

 

There are 4 teams still in it for 2 teams going down :

7. Watford 17 pts GD -23

8. Reading 16 pts GD -18

9. Cardiff 15 pts GD -8  Final game away to Villa next week

10. Forest 14 pts GD -21 Final game at home to Coventry

 

Forest needs a win to stay up as they would overtake Watford and Reading.

Cardiff would stay up with a win  as they would overtake Watford and Reading.

Cardiff could also stay up with a draw, should Forest draw or loose as they would finish with 16 pts but a better goal difference than Reading

Reading needs Cardiff to loose and Forest not to win to stay up

Watford needs Cardiff not to win to stay up or Cardiff to win and Forest not to win at the same time

 

 

 

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Sunderland WFC wins the Women’s Premier League

Well done to Mick Mulhern and all the Sunderland girls winning the Women’s Premier League title for the second year running. Let’s hope they will be in the WSL in 2014 alongside Leeds. Both side dominated the League.

 

The top of the table looks like this.

1. Sunderland 42 pts

2. Leeds 41 pts

3. Barnet 26 pts

Frankfurt 2 Arsenal 0

About a week now since the game has been played and I can actually write about it. It was pleasing to see a dozen of Arsenal Ladies fan at the away game in Frankfurt. They were lucky to have seats and protected from the rain while I got soaked in the standing area lol.

The result was bitterly disappointing as it was probably one of the easier chance to to reach the champions league final considering the best 2 teams played in the other semi-final. The girls are doing superbly well as they are currently ranked 4th overall in the UEFA ranking I think and deserve it for all their hard work throught the years.

As in the home leg, I do regret the lack of emphasis on attacking especially in midfield where there was none of the two creative playmaker ie Jordan or Kim. To be fair with the game at 0-0 at half time, the team was still in the tie as two goals would have been enough. In the end the 2-0 scoreline reflected the game and we can have no complaint. The girls did their best and it wasn’t good enough to qualify.

The only thing is that game left me with the same feeling after than extra time FA cup final defeat against Everton. Being over cautious cost us. If I come back to that final, it felt that we had a gun loaded with two spare bullet Lander and Bruton to go for the win and replace the tiring wingers and we didn’t go for it. In the end, Everton capitalised on a mistake and the trophy was gone.

Same feeling again over those 2 games. Not having Kim and/or Jordan in midfield to dynamize energize and create things meant the ball usage wasn’t as good as possible. I think not enough chances got created and the midfield control was better from the Frankfurt team. There were few times when the ball was won and a quick counter attack would have had devastating effect but the passing wasn’t accurate enough.

Let’s hope the girls can reach the London final in 2013, they deserve a chance to play a final at home.

FA WSL transfer window April

April signings are  in bold

Arsenal

In : Alex Scott ( Boston Breakers ), Kelly Smith ( Boston Breakers), Gemma Davison (Sky Blue FC), Rebecca Spencer ( ASJ Soyaux ), Bianca Bragg,  Sophie Harris

Out : Rebecca Spencer (ASJ Soyaux ),  Meaghan Sargeant ( Lincoln), Melissa Lawley (Bristol), Angharad James ( Bristol), Rebecca Spencer( Birmingham)

Birmingham

In :  Eniola Aluko ( Sky Blue FC),  Rachel Unitt ( Everton),  Callan Barber ( Coventry), Chrissy Torkildsen (Coventry), Rebecca Spencer( Arsenal), Anna Wilcox,  Hannah George,  Harley Simpson

Out :  Stephanie Curtis ( Bristol),  Dunia Susi  (Chelsea), Eartha Pond ( Everton)

Bristol

In :  Stephanie Curtis ( Birmingham ),  Nikki Watts (Reading), Natasha Harding ( Cardiff), Laura Del Rio (Philadelphia Independence) , Melissa Lawley ( Arsenal), Angharad James (Arsenal)

Out :  Katie Sherwood ( Chelsea ),  Anouk Hoogendijk ( FC Utrecht),  Helen Bleazard ( Chelsea), Lillie Bilson ( Doncaster)

Chelsea

In :  Katie Sherwood ( Bristol ),  Suzanne Lappin ( Glasgow City),  Sophie Ingle (Cardiff),  Dunia Susi (Birmingham ),  Helen Bleazard ( Bristol ), Victoria Williams ( Doncaster Rover Belles), Sophie Gwilliam

Out : Naomi Cole (Lewes),  Leanne Champ ( Millwall),  Emma Plewa (Spurs),  Rebecca Jane (Reading),   Shelby Hills (Watford)

Doncaster

In : Sue Smith , Leandra Little ( Lincoln ),  Julie-Ann Russell (Peamount), Shelby Hills ( Watford), Tanya Oxtoby ( Perth Glory), Lillie Bilson (Bristol), Alyssa Lagonia (Ottawa Fury), Tania Pedron (Barrie Spirit), Jasmine Elliott ( Blackburn Rovers),  Lucy Sowerby ( Sheffield COE), Nicola Emery ( Sheffield COE)

Out : Helen Alderson ( Sunderland), Abbie Prosser ( Barnet),  Shelly Cox (Porstmouth) , Vicky Exley,  Precious Hamilton (Lincoln), Victoria Williams ( Chelsea)

Everton

In :  Eartha Pond (Birmingham), Alex Greenwood, Nikita Parris

Out : Rachel Unitt ( Birmingham)

Lincoln

In : Laura Alleway ( Brisbane Roar ) , Collette McCallum ( Perth Glory), Meaghan Sargeant ( Arsenal),  Precious Hamilton ( Doncaster), Katie Rood(), Emily Roberts

Out : Sue Smith, Leandra Little ( Doncaster )

Liverpool

In : Aroon Clansey (Canberra United), Danielle Lea ( Manchester City), Nicola Davies ( Rochdale), Hannah Keryakoplis, Amie Fleming, Sophie Jones

Out : Suzanne Lappin ( Glasgow City)

WPL League Cup semi-finals

Logic has been respected with the top two league teams winners yesterday. Leeds won 2-0 away at Coventry while Sunderland defeated Blackburn 8-0. The Premier League table doesnt lie : Leeds 41 points, Sunderland 39 pts with a game to go. Teams 3rd and 4th have 26 points. It says it all. Someone suggested to me those 2 teams would be better off playing in the WSL and would give a game to most of the teams there as well.

The final will be played on the 6th of May at Sixfields Stadium Northampton kick-off 2.30 pm. Good luck to both side who deserve a title out of the season.

WPL Northern and Southern division promotion and relegation

Congratulations to Manchester City Ladies promoted this season after missing out  last year. They were favorite in the final stretch and did well to keep their composure and go over the finishing line.

Congratulations also to Porstmouth winners of the Southern division, they finally overtook Colchester United who had been waiting for 4 months for other teams results.

The 2 teams relegated in the Northern Division are Leeds City Vixens with 0 point so far in 17 games (!) and Rotherham United with 13 points. Rochdale stays up with 15 points

In the Southern Division Keynsham goes down with 15 points as well as Plymouth with 17 points and a -19 goal difference while Millwall Lionesses stays up with 17 points but a better goal difference -13.

Sophie Bradley’s influence on Forest’s season.

Just reading her interview on shekicks website and she mentions she played 4 games with Forest earlier in the season.  As Forest is currently fighting to save their National division status, here are the numbers.

Forest has played 17, won 4, drawn 2, lost 11, scored 20 and conceded 41.

Sophie Bradley has played 4 games with them, they won 3, lost 1, scored 9 and conceded 5

So Forest without Bradley has played 13 games won 1 drawn 2  and lost 10 scored 11 conceded 36.

So that’s 0.82 pts per game overall and 0.38 pts without her. 23.5% and 7.69% win percentage . 64.7% and 76.9% defeat percentage. 1.2 and 0.9 goals scored, 2,41 and 2,76 goals conceded.

Basically had Bradley not played those 4 games and the same ratio of 0.38 pts per game extended to 17 games would give  Forest currently with 7 points only.

So if Forest stays up, a thank you card should really go her way. Statistics and number don’t say the whole story but they provide some funny information like this one.

Credit to Forest for signing her and making the most of her short stay.

FA WSL disciplinary result

After this week-end’s FA Cup semi-final 4 players are on the suspended list. 3 of them from Bristol Academy, all 3 are defenders.

Grace McCatty,  Corinne Yorston and Alexandra  Culvin will all miss the home game against Lincoln on Saturday.

Brooke Chaplen will miss the Everton home game against Birmingham.

In the WPL a Cardiff city player got sent off probably for serious foul and ended up,   breaking the ankle ligaments of a Leeds United player.

An interesting case to see if the FA cares at football or not.

The relegation battle National division ep 9

Well survival Sunday has returned it’s verdict :

Forest 1 Watford 2 and Cardiff 0 Leeds 2

We know have a clearer view on things.

Reading finished the season with 16 pts and a -18 goal difference.

Watford finished the season with 17 pts and a -23 goal difference.

Cardiff has 2 games to play 15 pts and a -7 goal difference

Forest has 1 game to play 14 pts and a -21 goal difference

Forest need to beat Coventry at home to stay up. Any other result would mean going down.

Cardiff will be safe with 2 pts from Villa away and Sunderland. I don’t think they will get anything against Sunderland who needs to win that game to take the title.  So it will probably go the last games played with no date set yet…

it’s very difficult to know who will stay up as all 4 teams are with a chance but remember Watford 1 point after 11 games played and have finished with 17 in 18. If they stay up, that will be some kind of incredible achievement.

Arsenal 1 Frankfurt 2

That 2-1 home defeat is a disappointment. It leaves the team with an uphill mountain to climb next Saturday in Frankfurt.

The girls clearly gave their best and did well using all the traditional British values and they should be praised for giving 110% and battling hard.

The game was also a good reminder of the gap between the WSL and the top champions league teams. Higher intensity, pace, footballing quality. You get away with things in the WSL but you can’t in those big games.

A draw would have been a fair result in my opinion because the team didn’t manage to get behind Frankfurt’s defense very often. I was saying to a friend just before Ciara’s equaliser. If we can’t do anything during normal play maybe on set pieces. Bang comes the goal, German gift gratefully accepted with an excellent timed run from Grant at the back post.

So what didn’t go right for me was the midfield battle and the ball utilisation to feed the front 3. Not to say the midfield 3 played badly at all, they were in place for the defending and working hard but they were bypassed often in attacking and possession in that area was scarce.

So with Kim up front unable to take control of the game or not playing back to goals to provide lay-offs and feed midfield players, logic would have had Jordan “the game accelarator” would have taken the playmaker position to create space and opening ? Nope, we had a number 6 and two number 8 type in a midfield three hence an imbalance towards the defensive work. A normal midfield three would have a 6-8-10 type combination.

A shame also that Jennifer Beattie isn’t available at the moment because she would have been useful upfront with her height power and skill.

As the team now needs to win by 2 clear goals, this is the one I would play next week in Frankfurt :

Byrne, Scott Houghton Flaherty Fahey, Chapman Nobbs Little, Davison Beattie or Carter Yankey.

Attack, attack, attack but not with all guns blazing.