Women's Football

Leah Williamson admits England's Arsenal & Chelsea players have discussed recent WSL clash

Ali Rampling
Williamson will captain England at the Arnold Clark Cup
Williamson will captain England at the Arnold Clark Cup / Catherine Ivill/GettyImages
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Leah Williamson has admitted that England's Arsenal and Chelsea players have chatted about the pair's recent blockbuster WSL fixture after joining up for international duty.

The league's top two sides played out a compelling clash at Kingsmeadow on Friday evening, before eight players from the respective clubs joined up with the England squad on Sunday night ahead of the Arnold Clark Cup.

The match finished 0-0 to leave the WSL title race fascinatingly poised, with Williamson involved in the thick of the action late on as Niamh Charles' cross struck her hand in the penalty area. However, the referee opted not to point to the spot.

"We had a bit of a catch up with the girls after we arrived," Williamson - who will captain England at the Arnold Clark Cup - said. "Obviously we played on the Friday night so by the time we arrived here it was sort of old news in terms of focusing on camp. A little bit of a catch up and then move on.

"It was one of the best games of the season and one of the toughest teams to play and then when you arrive at camp they're your teammates, and I'm happy to be on the same team as them this week."

England face Canada in their opening game of the Arnold Clark Cup on Thursday evening, a fixture which will see the Lionesses come up against former assistant boss Bev Priestman.

Priestman was Phil Neville's number two between 2018 and 2020, before taking the top job with the Canadian national team. She led her side to a surprise Olympic gold during her first major tournament in charge.

"When Bev worked with us she had a real defensive focus and I'd say the main traits when you look at Canada now, you can really see how they play in possession," Williamson said of her former coach.

"They're an organised team but they also have a lot of pace and she's playing to those strengths. It's interesting to me to see what she's done with the Canadian team - obviously successful in the Olympics - it's an efficient style of play which maybe we didn't get to with her. It's different but interesting to play against."


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