Women's Football

WSL preview & predictions: Gameweek 19

Jamie Spencer
Apr 3, 2021, 12:50 PM GMT+1
The pressure is on WSL leaders Chelsea to keep winning
The pressure is on WSL leaders Chelsea to keep winning | Visionhaus/Getty Images
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All 12 Women’s Super League clubs are in action this Easter weekend, which will be the final round of games before the domestic season pauses for the April international break.

Every point at both ends of the table is becoming increasingly crucial at this stage of the campaign, with the title race and the relegation battle still open.

Here’s a run through of all of the games you can watch this weekend.

Saturday 3 April

Reading vs West Ham

Grace Fisk
Struggling West Ham are desperate for points | Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

What time is kick off? 14.00 (BST)
Where is it being played? Madejski Stadium
TV channel? FA Player

Reading are a decent side that a desperate West Ham will not want to face as they battle the very real threat of relegation, having sunk to the bottom of the table last month.

The Hammers have largely appeared devoid of attacking quality and imagination since Rachel Daly returned to parent club Houston Dash in January.

West Ham did beat Reading in the reverse fixture back in early October, but that feels like a lifetime ago now and this one will be a very tough challenge.

Prediction: Reading 1-0 West Ham

Sunday 4 April

Chelsea vs Birmingham

Chelsea progressed in the Champions League this week
Chelsea progressed in the Champions League this week | PETER KOHALMI/Getty Images

What time is kick off? 12.30 (BST)
Where is it being played? Kingsmeadow
TV channel? BBC iPlayer/FA Player

Chelsea return to domestic action off the back of the midweek high of reaching the Champions League semi-finals for the third time in the space of four seasons.

But Emma Hayes’ side must keep their eye on the ball in the WSL as Manchester City are within touching distance behind them and are waiting to pounce on any slip up.

Chelsea have only dropped seven WSL points all season but will be well aware that Birmingham will be no cake walk, having been stunned by Brighton in February.

Prediction: Chelsea 3-0 Birmingham

Everton vs Aston Villa

Everton are overdue a win at home
Everton are overdue a win at home | Clive Rose/Getty Images

What time is kick off? 13.00 (BST)
Where is it being played?
 Walton Hall Park
TV channel? FA Player

Everton have firmly established themselves as the best outside of the WSL’s big four this season, although they have somewhat bizarrely failed to win at home since 17 January.

Conversely, the Toffees have won their last three in a row on the road. But this weekend against a struggling Aston Villa is an opportunity to get back on track on Merseyside.

Villa are finding things tough in their debut top-flight season and have only picked up four points from a possible 24 in the WSL so far this calendar year, including defeats in each of their last four.

Prediction: Everton 2-0 Aston Villa

Brighton vs Manchester United

Man Utd got back to winning ways against West Ham last week
Man Utd got back to winning ways against West Ham last week | Visionhaus/Getty Images

What time is kick off? 14.00 (BST)
Where is it being played? Peoples Pension Stadium
TV channel? FA Player

Manchester United got an important win over West Ham last time out and will be looking to rebuild the momentum that was lost during a sticky patch of form in February.

It is the second WSL season in a row in which United appear to be generally running out of steam, although 2020/21 will still be an improvement as long as they can stay ahead of Arsenal.

Brighton recently won four consecutive WSL games to shoot into the top half of the table, including an unthinkable victory over Chelsea, but the Seagulls came crashing back down to earth by losing 5-0 at home to Everton in their most recent outing.

Prediction: Brighton 1-3 Manchester United

Bristol City vs Arsenal

Arsenal boss Joe Montemurro announced he is stepping down in May
Arsenal boss Joe Montemurro announced he is stepping down in May | Alex Burstow/Getty Images

What time is kick off? 14.00 (BST)
Where is it being played? Twerton Park
TV channel? FA Player

This will be Arsenal’s first game since the announcement that manager Joe Montemurro will be stepping down at the end of the season. He will be hoping his players react with a performance.

The Gunners should have no issues here as they have taken 31 points from a possible 33 against teams below them in the WSL table this season. They are also building momentum with four wins in a row going into this one, including against Manchester United.

Bristol City have improved considerably since Matt Beard took over as manager in mid-January. But games against the biggest clubs during that time have still proved a bridge too far.

Prediction: Bristol City 0-4 Arsenal

Tottenham vs Manchester City

Chloe Kelly
Man City should have too much quality for Tottenham | Alex Livesey - Danehouse/Getty Images

What time is kick off? 14.00 (BST)
Where is it being played? The Hive
TV channel? FA Player

Manchester City must deal with the disappointment of Champions League elimination in midweek, despite winning the second leg of their quarter-final tie against Barcelona.

But City have been in imperious form in the WSL for some time now, winning 11 games in a row since early December to put serious pressure on reigning champions and leaders Chelsea.

Tottenham are unlikely to be able to put up much of a fight against their Manchester visitors, having failed to win any of their last seven WSL games and scoring only three times in that run.

Prediction: Tottenham 0-4 Manchester City

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