FA WSL 2nd half schedule : bizzare, unfair or just the usual shambles ?

Following a comment from Mark Sampson on how unfair the schedule was for his team Bristol Academy, I had a look in the number of days interval between each game for the 8 teams. I have included the Conti Cup games in this  analysis. Those disruptions in the schedule are due to the UEFA U19 Euro to be played in Wales very soon. It seems it was not taken into account, when planning the season 6 months ago. How long ago did UEFA announce the U19 finals schedule? Probably more than a year ago, I think. It is not the 1st time this season that the FA disregards the UEFA competitions’ schedule. Day 1 & 2 games were played on the same week-ends as Arsenal Champions League ties.

All the teams have 14 days between the 13th and the final game 29/09 due to the England WC qualifiers against Belarus 21/09 and 26/09.

Arsenal 5 3 7 3 8 3 4 3 7 14 have a tight schedule due to postponed games in the first half of the season. It will be a good test of the players fitness and squad strength.

Birmingham 7 7 13 3 8 3 14 have a good schedule overall with sufficient resting time except for a 3 games interval that goes 3-8-3 but it means they can plan on rotating for those games while play their best 11 on all other games very easily.

Bristol 6 22 4 3 4 3 14 have a strange schedule indeed first a 6 days interval so ample resting time then 22 days which is ridiculous. Then a 5 games sequence that is really tight and will test their squad and then the 14 days break for WC qualifiers.

Chelsea 7 6 12 4 14 have a good schedule with enough recovery time for most games.

Doncaster 7 10.3 5 3 3 3 8 14 an easy start with enough recovery time between games, then a tough 6 games streak where their strength will be tested. then a lot of recovery time to finish the last 2 games  It will be hard for them not to finish bottom of the League with that schedule. They had too many games postponed  for multiple reasons and will struggle probably.

Everton 4 3 21 3 3 3 5 3 14 Another team with a curious schedule 4 and 3 days between games then nothing for 21 days, then a 6 games streak in a tight schedule situation and the usual 14 days break at the end.

Lincoln 3 4 18 3 4 10 14 A mix of long rest and tight schedule, one of the easiest schedule of the FA WSL alongside Birmingham.

Liverpool 4 3 7 7 8 3 8 14 Quite a good schedule, although Matt Beard did not seem to rotate much in the first half of the season, so that schedule should sit him well. If Liverpool beats Arsenal and Lincoln in the first 2 league games, they will have league 95% won.

So that schedule is just as mess as the first half schedule was. It is not rocket science 14 League games should be played over 14 weeks with a week rest between games. If you want quality football. That is it. The FA WSL is a fitness and squad strength test rather than a football one. Let’s remember last year Conti Cup final barely 3 days after the last League game between 2 exhausted teams…

There are 52 weeks in a year. Even with international football breaks, not finding time to schedule properly 14 League games + up to 5 conti cup and 5 FA Cup games is just not serious. The FA WSL is a tool for the England teams, well we can clearly the schedule is just bad and does not help. How many players came to the Euros with knocks and just knackered ?

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About Sylvain

women's football fan since 1998
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