FA WSL 2 Summer Transfer window

The Summer transfer windows opens on the 23rd of June and will close on the 14th of September

 

This week’s transfers

Confirmed transfers

Extended contracts

Expected deals to go through 

 

 

Doncaster Belles

In : Jules Draycott ( Sheffield)

Out : Bethan Davies ( loan –  Guiseley Vixens), Nicola Hobbs ( London Bees)

 

Durham WFC

In : Abbi Cottam, Kathryn Hill, Zoe Ness, Nicola Worthington ( University of Bridgeport), Ellis Dalgliesh ( Celtic Women)

Out :

 

Sheffield FC

In : Melissa Johnson ( Derby County)

Out : Billie Murphy,Danielle Lea ( Fylde Ladies FC) , Natasha Flint ( Fylde Ladies FC) , Lagan Makin ( Fylde Ladies FC), Olivia Fuller  ( Fylde Ladies FC), Jules Draycott ( Doncaster Belles)

 

London Bees

In : Luke Swindlehurst ( manager), Rosie Lane ( Oxford), Evie Clarke, Rosie Kmita, Nicola Hobbs ( Doncaster)

Out : Mollie Burgess ( MK Dons), Ellie Perkins ( Arsenal)

 

Aston Villa

In : Dave Stevens ( head coach), Kerri Welsh, Beth Merrick, Katie Wilkinson, Chloe Jones, Sian Rogers ( Arsenal)

Out : Mollie Rouse ( Louisville Cardinals), Grace Smith ( West Virginia Mountainers), Joe Hunt ( manager), Lucy Porter ( Hofstra), Lucy Shepherd ( Hofstra), Claire Skinner ( Oxford United)

 

Millwall Lionesses

In :  Rianna Dean (Arsenal), Ella Rutherford ( 2 years), Megan Alexander ( Bristol), Charlotte Devlin (Arsenal)

Out : Ashley Cheatley ( Ashford)

 

Oxford United

In : Madi Lee, Lauren Haynes, Riva Casley, Ellie Noble, Danielle Carlton ( Spurs Ladies), Ella Franklin-Fraiture, Lauren Allison, Kayleigh Hines ( Reading), Claire Skinner ( Aston Villa), Demi Lambourne, Evie Gane, Charlie Deeley, Emily Allen ( Cardiff)

Out : Gabby Ravenscroft ( Arsenal Ladies), Rosie Lane ( London Bees), Uni Umotong ( Brighton)

 

Watford Ladies

In : Fran Kitching ( Chelsea Ladies – loan), Sarah Jones ( Crystal Palace), Helen Ward

Out : Lauren Jordinson

 

Brighton Women

In : Danielle Buet ( unattached), Uni Umotong ( Oxford), Hope Powell ( manager)

Out :  Hollie Olding ( University of Kentucky), Alessia Russo ( UNC),  Amy Taylor (Lewes Ladies), Lisa Fulgence ( Lewes Ladies), Charlotte Young, Emma Byrne (retirement)

 

Spurs Ladies

In : Sarah Wiltshire ( Yeovil), Ashley Neville ( Coventry), Lauren Pickett

Out : Megen Lynch ( Crystal Palace), Nikita Whinnett ( Crystal Palace)

All the FA WSL players selected for the Euro 2017 and their squad numbers

The tournament is starting in ten days and UEFA has published the teams’ squad lists. Here are all the FA WSL 1&2  players that will be involved in the Netherlands

 

FA WSL 1

 

Arsenal (9)

Jordan Nobbs, England #7

Alexandra Scott, England #22

Jodie Taylor, England #9

Fara Williams, England #10

Dominique Janssen, Netherlands #20

Anna Miedema, Netherlands #9

Danielle Van De Donk, Netherlands #10

Sari Van Veenendaal, Netherlands #1

Lisa Evans, Scotland #11

 

Birmingham (2)

Ellen White, England #10

Andrine Hegerberg, Norway #8

 

 

Bristol (2)

Yana Daniels, Belgium #15

Chloe Arthur, Scotland #23

 

Chelsea (8)

Millie Bright, England #16

Karen Carney, England #14

Francesca Kirby, England #23

Carly Telford, England #21

Maren Mjelde, Norway #6

Erin Cuthbert, Scotland #8

Hedvig Lindhal, Sweden#1

Ramona Bachmann, Switzerland #10

 

Liverpool (5)

Siobhan Chamberlain, England #13

Alex Greenwood, England #20

Casey Stoney, England #12

Shanice Van De Sanden, Netherlands #7

Caroline Weir, Scotland #9

 

 

Manchester City (11)

Mie Jans, Danemark #18

Karen Bardsley, England #1

Lucia Bronze, England #2

Isobel Christiansen, England #8

Toni Duggan*, England #19

Stephanie Houghton, England #5

Nikita Parris, England #17

Jill Scott, England #4

Demi Stokes, England #3

Jane Ross, Scotland #19

Kosovare Asllani, Sweden #9

 

Reading (3)

Jade Moore, England #11

Josanne Potter, England #6

Mandy Van Den Berg, Netherlands #4

 

FA WSL 2

 

Doncaster Belles (1)

Christie Murray, Scotland #16

 

* Toni Duggan has signed for FC Barcelona but was registered by the FA as a Manchester City player.

Frankie Fantom Brown is listed as unattached although Bristol City have not mentioned she has left the club yet.

FA WSL licence application for 2018/19 extended

The news came about a month ago following the demise of Notts County Ladies and the restructure of the WSL1 and WSL2 with Everton promoted to make it ten teams in each division. But as usual questions remain as there are some grey areas in the announcement.

The most curious point is actually when the FA made the original announcement back in December 2016   they actually opened for 20 WSL teams licences available, which did  not make sense at the time as the FA WPL was going to get promoted for the 2017/18 season.  So if Notts had not folded , there would have been 21 teams including newly promoted Spurs fighting for 20 licences.

“The alignment of the FA WSL season with the rest of the women’s football pyramid will mean that relegation from FA WSL 2 into the FA Women’s Premier League (FA WPL) will be introduced from the 2017-18 season.”

It is great to see relegation introduced and it will mean more pressure for teams at the bottom of the FA WSL2.

“The promotion position for the FA Women’s Premier League (FA WPL) play-off winners will be continued.”

“The licences will begin for the 2018-19 season and, for the first time, will not be fixed-term. Clubs will need to continue to meet licence criteria on an annual basis.”

This is a huge change and quite a disruptive one as team can lose their licence and we do not know where they would end up if they lose theirs. You also have to question what will happen to promotion relegation as well as teams could be promoted/relegated off the pitch, while the on the pitch results are different.

“Should a place in the FA WSL become available outside of promotion and relegation, it will be made available through an open application process.”

We all know that there is media pressure for United to get a women’s team but Southampton who now have an RTC and a u20 team are in better position to grab a licence if there is an opening.

Coming back to the point in bold, the application have been extended to a deadline on the 9th of october
“Under the revised schedule, recommendations will be made to and assessed by the FA Women’s Football Board by end of December 2017. “

“The constitution of clubs within the competition will be confirmed at the FA WSL AGM in June 2018. Licences will begin from the 2018-19 season.”

So basically by January 2018, the teams will already know where if they  will play FA WSL1, FA WSL2 or if they will lose their licence for the 2018/19 season. We are talking here FIVE months before the end of the 2017/18 season.

And then we get told there is promotion relegation between FA WSL 1 – FA WSL 2 and  FA WSL 2- FAWPL. Now, it is does not make sense to me at all, does it means the FA will actually have promotion relegation off the pitch as well as promotion relegation on the pitch.

Remember prior to the 2014 season Doncaster Belles were relegated off the pitch one game into their season and went to FA WSL 2, while newcomer Manchester City Ladies went straight to FA WSL1. And to be fair, considering City’s investment for their women’s football team, it was with hindsight the right decision.

So far example, what if the team with the smallest FA WSL 1 budget finishes in ninth place or higher and  is actually outbid by one team from the FA WSL 2 that subsequently replace them for the 2018/19 season when licence are delivered.

Does it mean that the team that finished bottom of the FA WSL 1 is not relegated and the team that finished top of the FA WSL 2 is not promoted, or does it mean that we would see a double promotion relegation?

And because licences are now offered for one season only and need to be renewed every season, we will get the same scenario every season and we don’t know if off the pitch results takes priority over on the pitch results.

At the end of the day, if a team is not allowed to compete in FA WSL1 because of lack of money, infrastructure or else, but is promoted or staying up in the division, you have to wonder what the FA will decided to do and it is an incredibly grey area.

As previously mentioned the Belles were demoted one game into their season and the FA got lucky that they finished bottom of the FA WSL 1 that year and it looked like a normal relegation rather than a demotion to the general public.

 

I intend to ask the FA and see what the answer they come up with as the impact of those decisions is important in term of fairness of the competition.

The FA giving us fake news again, this time about the FA WSL2 Spring Series title

It is well documented that the FA WSL twitter and website are making gaffe after gaffe and again they have come with a new one about the FA WSL 2 Spring Series winner.

For those who do not know about the previous cock-ups they claimed that Manchester City was the first FA WSL team to reach the Champions League semi-final. Then advertised the FA Women’s Cup final with Chelsea Ladies as one of the team in it. The final will see Man City play Birmingham City tonight at 5.15pm at Wembley Stadium. By the way, if you are reading this blog, you should attend it and make it a record number.

So what are the FA claiming this time ? “The Toffees are targeting sweet title success this weekend”. Surely they made a mistake in the title, but the post itself must be correct ?

Well no, they repeat the same absurdity again :

“Everton will be crowned champions of the FA Women’s Super League 2 Spring Series if they beat Watford this Sunday.”

Let’s have a look at the table, Everton have 16 points and a 17-7 goal difference, Durham have 16 points and a 10-5 goal difference. And the fixture list : Everton v Watford 14/05, London Bees v Everton 20/05, Aston Villa v Durham 21/05 .

 

Let’s make a simple calculation : should Everton beat Watford 1-0, they would reach 19 points and a 18-7 goal difference. The FA would then give them the trophy according to the article.

 

Then the following week with nothing to play for, they could lose 3-0 at Bees. 19 points and a 18-10 goal difference. And on final day, should Durham win 4-0 at Villa, they would also reach 19 points and a 14-5 goal difference. As per the FA WSL Spring Series rules, the first tie-breaker in case of teams finishing level on points is the goal difference.

 

So we could with finish with Durham with +9 and Everton with +8. It is not an unrealistic prospect at all, although the Bees’ form suggest they will have a hard time beating the Toffees.  And as mentioned by my good friend Dion, something that I had not spotted

 

 

 

Aston Villa have 14 points and two games to play away to Doncaster and home to Durham. Should Villa win today, they would reach 17 points and could be crowned champions if Everton final tally is 19 points with a title shootout on final day.

 

 

Basically, the FA WSL putting fake news on their website / social media seems to be the flavor of the season and you wonder why there are no basics checks for accuracy from the governing body.

 

 

Watford Ladies v Spurs Ladies

I went to Vicarage Road on Wednesday to watch an interesting friendly between Watford currently in FA WSL 2 and Spurs Ladies who have just won the FA WPL Southern Division and will contest the FA WSL promotion play-off against Blackburn Rovers.

Unfortunately for fans, the game was played behind closed door and I guess this is due to cost involved in policing stewarding etc as the matchday revenue would certainly not cover the use of the ground.

I think it was good for both team’s players to play at such a venue rather than their usual ground.  What I noticed is all the players seem to enjoy the venue and not troubled by playing at such a nice ground. Obviously a couple of Watford players had already played there and Spurs recently won the FA WPL title at White Hart Lane.

Watford ended up 2-0 winners in a game where both sides decided to rotate their team. Simona Petkova scored an excellent volley from a corner in the first half and Cherelle Albert added a second goal from the penalty spot.

It was certainly interesting as Spurs are certainly looking to promotion in the FA WSL and from the number of games I saw this year they would not look out of place, the only exception being the FA Women’s Cup North London Derby where they looked like a rabbit caught in the headlight and did not perform at their usual level.

Watford Ladies are obviously in a rebuilding process with Keith Boanas trying new players and he is likely to make even more signings during the Summer break as players become available.

So it was an entertaining game and a real shame, only friends and family were invited to watch it.

FA WSL 2 Winter transfer window 2017

Here is the recap for this winter’s transfer window that has closed on the 6th of April

This week’s transfers

Confirmed transfers

Extended contracts

Expected deals to go through 

Doncaster Belles

In : Emily Simpkins, Kirsty Hanson ( Liverpool), Sophie Barker, Mayumi Pacheco ( Liverpool- transfer), Rachel Newborough, Sophie Walton ( Notts County), Leandra Little, Nicky Davies, Bethan Davies ( Leeds)

Out : Rachel Newborough ( Bradford City – loan), Carla Humphrey ( Arsenal – end of loan), Katrin Omarsdottir, Mayumi Pacheco ( Liverpool – end of loan), Sue Smith, Anna Moorhouse ( Arsenal)

Everton Ladies

In : Amber-Keegan Stobbs ( Reading), Olivia Chance ( Breidablik), Georgia Brougham, Lauren Davies, Megan Finnigan, Michelle Hinnigan, Emily Hollinshead, Kelly Jones, Vicky Jones, Kirsty Levell, Simone Magill, Claudia Walker, Mollie Green ( Liverpool)

Out : Rosella Ayane ( Chelsea – end of loan), Jenna Dear, Ellie Stewart ( Blackburn Rovers), Millie Turner ( Bristol City)

Durham WFC

In : Sarah McFadden, Rebecca Salicki, Nat Gutteridge, Emily Roberts, Ellie Christon,  Nicola Gibson, Annabel Johnson. Sarah Wilson, Jen Jennings, Nicki Gears, Grace McCatty ( Bristol City), Helen Alderson, Jordan Atkinson, Rachel Lee, Mercy Dakoah, Caroline Dixon, Zoe Ness (Mallbackens IF), Rachel Laws ( Sunderland ), Beth Hepple

Out :

Sheffield FC

In : Carla Ward, Juliana Draycott, Danielle Cox, Rhema Lord-Mears, Natasha Flint (AFC Fylde), Hannah Dale ( Liverpool – loan), Sarah Jackson, Emma Johnson, Billie Murphy, Chloe Dixon, Sherry McCue, Ellie Gilliat, Kenedy Owen, Suzanne Davies, Sophie Jones, Emma Lipman, Hanna Cain, Jenna Dear

Out : Olivia Wild ( AFC Fylde), Kirsty Hanson ( end of loan – Liverpool)

London Bees

In : Sophie Harris, Jo Wilson, Sophie Fogarty, Emma Beckett, Ashleigh Goddard, Rebecca Anderson, Paula Howells, Aoife Hurley, Lucy Loomes ( Millwall), Laura May-Walkley ( Reading), Amber Tullett ( Watford), Mollie Burgess ( Watford), Jordan Littleboy ( Watford), Anne Meiwald ( Chelsea), Evie Clarke, Ocean Rolandsen ( Millwall)

Out : Andria Georgiou ( Spurs Ladies) , Deanna Cooper, Danielle Scanlon ( Spurs Ladies), Nikki Watts, Meghan McKeag ( Watford), Merrick Will ( Watford), Laura May-Walkley, Jordan Littleboy ( Arsenal), Aoife Hurley ( Aston Villa), David Edmondson ( manager)

Aston Villa

In : Beth Merrick, Amy West, Chloe Jones, Hannah George, Elisha N’Dow, Kerri Welsh, Maddy Cuscak, Chloe Beattie, Kathy Moran, Tash Baptiste, Lucy Porter, Lucy Shepherd, Jade Richards, Mollie Rouse, Alice Hassall ( Notts County), Nicola Potts, Grace Smith, Claire Skinner, Katie Wilkinson, Alys Hincliffe, Aoife Hurley ( London Bees)

Out : Sarah Mayling ( Birmingham City)

Millwall Lionesses

In : Ashley Hincks, Jordan Butler, Sarah Quantrill, Amber Gaylor, Megan Wynne, Billie Brooks, Leighanne Robe, Georgina Giddings, Leigh Nicol, Ellie Mason ( Watford), Phoebe Read ( Watford), Sarah Kempson ( Portsmouth), Ashley Cheatley ( Ashford Town), Bonnie Horwood

Out : Lucy Loomes ( London Bees), Rinsola Babajide ( Watford), Ocean Rolandsen ( London Bees)

Oxford United

In : Sophie Baker, Jessica Frampton, Lauren Haynes, Holly Pickett, Madi Lee, Riva Casley, Ini Umotong, Karl Milgate ( first -team caoch), Emily Donovan (Yeovil), Andy Cook ( manager), Taome Oliver ( Notts County), Ella Franklin-Fraiture

Out : Hannah Cox ( Oxford City), Les Taylor ( manager), Katherine Nutman

Watford Ladies

In : Keith Boanas ( manager), Rinsola Babjide ( Millwall), Cherelle Albert, Lili Maple ( Crystal Palace), Meghan McKeag ( London Bees), Vicky Neal,  Leah Cudone, Ruby Baxter, Adekite Fatuga-Dada, Lucy Gillett, Lauren Jordinson, Charlotte Kerr, Anneka Nuttall ,Chloe Bassett, Kerry Walklett, Caoimhe O’Reilly, Danielle Puddefoot ( Cambridge United), Merrick Will ( London Bees), Jo Fletcher, Simona Petkova ( Leeds Ladies)

Out : Anne-Laure Davy ( ASJ Soyaux), Amber Tullett ( London Bees), Mollie Burgess ( London Bees), Jordan Littleboy ( london Bees), Ellie Mason ( Millwall), Phoebe Read ( Millwall)

Brighton Women

In : George Parris ( interim manager), Alessia Russo ( Chelsea), Emma Byrne ( Arsenal), Laura Rafferty (Chelsea), Jenna Legg ( Chelsea), Vicky Ashton-Jones, Faye Baker,Kirsty Barton, Charley Boswell, Ellie Dorey, Lisa Fulgence, Kate Natkiel, Sophie Perry, Amelia Ritchie, Lucy Somes, Amy Taylor, Bronwen Thomas, Charlotte Young

Out : Lily Agg (Bristol)

The FA WSL2 Spring Series, what’s up with those postponements ?

Considering the Spring Series are a nine games League and we have already seen six games postponed, is the situation due to bad planning or bad luck ?

Let’s remember that the FA WSL 2 schedule was actually well prepared. All games played at week-end. It looked a lot better than the previous seasons. So how did we end up with so many problems ?

There is a both of bad luck and planning elements, plus some FA gambling that has backfired. If we look game by game.

1. Sheffield v Doncaster :  bad luck as the weather was bad and pitch waterlogged. Could the pitch quality be better ? They fit the current regulations, so it is fine.

2. and 3. Doncaster v Villa & Everton v Durham : those two games were planned during an FA Cup week-end and a week before the rest of the matchday schedule.

It makes no sense at all . Either the FA gambled on the fact that all four teams would be eliminated in the FA Cup Round 3 for those two games to go through. And of course, the miracle did not happen. Or you do wonder if the clubs rather than the FA pushed for an original alternative date ?

4.5 and.6 Brighton v Doncaster, Everton v Watford, Watford v Doncaster :  Quite a simple explanation to those games being called off.

The FA put a couple of match days inside an international week. To be fair to them the English Football League does not stop during men’s internationals either, so there is consistency in the process.

They gambled that the FA WSL 2 teams would not have enough players on international duty to request postponement. Another fail and now three more games gone. Again there is a clear logic behind this, it is better to have one or two postponed games than having to schedule five or ten games in a busy calendar.

In the end, the fans are frustrated, the table means nothing, but it is a friendly tournament anyway. To me it seems difficult to attract fans when the schedule is so hit and miss.

Seriously speaking, Doncaster will have five games in hand over London Bees in a nine games series. If Chelsea had 17 games in hand over Arsenal in the Premier League a scandal would erupt. Also Doncaster will have to play seven games in five weeks, once they have managed to reschedule all those games.  It is groundhog day for the Belles

The big question is will the FA do better for the winter 2017/18 ? Answer on a postcard…