Due to the impending Women’s World Cup this summer, Liverpool Ladies played just the one game in May away at Notts County and the season is now on a 2-month break until mid-July.
While the first team have endured a tough start to their new campaign, integrating 4 new signings and picking up 6 league points from a possible 15, their development side recently concluded their 2014/15 season (the development league runs from September to May) and were crowned champions with 2 games to spare.
Women’s Super League
Notts County Ladies 1 – 0 Liverpool Ladies
On Sunday 12th May Liverpool Ladies travelled to Notts County, still missing Katrin Omarsdottir who has yet to feature this season and Lucy Staniforth – both building up their fitness with the development squad.
Liverpool almost took the lead immediately, Asisat Oshoala picking up the ball and making a charging run down the right wing. The Nigerian international cut into the box but her shot from a tight angle was punched away by Carly Telford in the Notts goal.
The visitors continued to threaten, dominating possession and creating chances; Fara Williams seeing a free kick well held by Telford and also having a strike blocked by defender Dani Buet.
At half-time Line Smorsgard made way for Nicole Rolser who began to link well with Natasha Dowie, with some play between the two reminiscent of the 2013 partnership which created 20+ goals.
It was frustrating then for Liverpool to concede from a set piece, Notts’ winter signing from Everton Ladies Alex Greenwood first winning the corner and then delivering a good ball to fellow ex-Evertonian Fern Whelan who headed into the back of the net.
The game would finish one-nil to the home side, with Liverpool heading home feeling deserving of at least a point.
The Women’s World Cup will kick off on Saturday 6th June, taking place in several cities across Canada. From the current Liverpool side both Fara Williams and Asisat Oshoala will be representing their countries.
Williams and England face France and Mexico in Moncton before heading to Montreal to play Colombia in their final group game. England were beaten 1-0 by the host country in their final pre-tournament friendly, Williams was brought on in the second half and almost equalised – her cross/ shot hitting the crossbar.
Oshoala and Nigeria have also faced Canada in a friendly, playing out a goalless draw. Oshoala was this month named BBC’s inaugural Women’s Player of Year, beating competition from Nadine Kessler of Germany and Brazil’s Marta to name just 2. Nigeria have been drawn in the tournament’s so-called ‘Group of Death’ and will face USA, Sweden and Australia.
Ex-Liverpool players to look out for during the World Cup include Sarah Gregorius who is in the New Zealand squad, Whitney Engen for the USA and Lucy Bronze who will be playing alongside Fara Williams once more for England.
On their way to being crowned league champions of the 2014/15 season, Liverpool Ladies development squad played 22 games, winning 18, drawing 1 and losing 3. They scored 90 goals overall, conceding just 15 and their league goal difference ended on +55.
Their league title was confirmed after title rivals Manchester City and Birmingham City dropped points, meaning that 3 points in the Merseyside derby would secure the Reds standing at the top of the league as unbeatable – impressively with 2 games still to play – and Liverpool would beat Everton convincingly, both Bethany Donoghue and Hannah Dale scoring twice to secure a 4-1 win.
For a full review of the development season, including a look at every player, visit my blog here.
The first team still very much have everything to play for when their season resumes away at Arsenal Ladies on Sunday 12th July, Chelsea currently sit in pole position at the top of the table and look to be odds-on favourites for the title but as we seen on the final day of last season, anything can happen in this league.
Coverage of the 2015 Women’s World Cup will be on BBC, with all England games live.
Thanks for reading @LFCladiesfans