WSL season’s most memorable moments
The final round of fixtures of the Women’s Super League season plays out on Saturday, with Chelsea and Manchester United vying for the title and Reading, who host the Blues, fighting to beat the drop along with Leicester.
Here we look at some of the standout moments from the 2022-23 WSL season.
Record at the Emirates
A notable sign of the women’s game’s growth following England’s triumph at the Euros last summer has been attendance figures.
And early on in the season a new record for the biggest WSL crowd was set, with Arsenal beating Tottenham 4-0 at the Emirates Stadium in September in front of 47,367 fans.
Jonas Eidevall’s Gunners made a perfect start to their campaign, winning the first six games, before their next league trip to the Emirates saw them suffer a dramatic 3-2 defeat to Manchester United in November.
The hosts led 2-1 thanks to a 73rd-minute Laura Wienroither goal before headers from Millie Turner and, in stoppage time, Alessia Russo secured victory for Marc Skinner’s side.
The contest also saw Arsenal’s Beth Mead sustain an ACL injury – they would additionally lose Vivianne Miedema, Leah Williamson and Wienroither to the same as the season went on.
One of the stars of United’s impressive campaign has been Mary Earps, who in January became the first goalkeeper to reach 50 WSL clean sheets, via a 1-0 win at Reading.
The England international, named FIFA women’s goalkeeper of the year in February, has registered 13 shut-outs in the league this term, taking the Golden Glove.
Having lost each of their first six league matches, Leicester in November replaced boss Lydia Bedford with Willie Kirk.
A considerable revival followed, and the Foxes moved off the bottom of the table, pushing Kelly Chambers’ Reading into the relegation place, with a 2-1 home win over the Royals in April, sealed by Carrie Jones’ goal in the sixth minute of added time.
Late Kerr winner
Chelsea’s defence of the title started with a shock 2-1 loss to newly-promoted Liverpool, managed by ex-Blues boss Matt Beard, and it appeared they might trip up again in the reverse fixture earlier this month when Emma Koivisto put the Reds ahead in the opening few minutes.
But Niamh Charles equalised just before the interval and Sam Kerr then scored an 86th-minute winner as Emma Hayes’ team turned things around and kept their title bid on track.
Last weekend’s penultimate round of action saw Chelsea open up a five-point lead at the top with a 2-0 win over Arsenal, with the title to be theirs if United failed to beat Manchester City later in the day.
That was on the cards in the closing stages at Leigh Sports Village, with Filippa Angeldahl having cancelled out Hayley Ladd’s opener, until United substitute Lucia Garcia popped up with a goal deep into stoppage time to take the race to the final day of the WSL season.
It was United’s first WSL win over City, and the result also confirmed their Champions League qualification.
View the latest football odds