The View From France

Last weekend saw the last sixteen of the French Cup. Jean-Pierre Thiesset rounds up all the action.

This weekend saw the entry of the D1 Arkema teams in the last sixteen round of French Cup. This year is a little special as the D1 teams have to compete against each other. So six top flight teams are already eliminated.

Olympique Lyonnais qualified for the next round by winning away from home 5–0 against Reims. There was no contest from Reims in this game dominated by the visitors from the beginning to the end. Jean-Luc Vasseur, Lyon Coach, even used this game to give play time to several players and tried different game plans like putting Sakina Karchaoui as a left striker in the first half or putting the recruit Damaris Egurrola in the middle in the second half. Goals for Lyon by Dzsenifer Marozsán (16, 51, 53), Wendie Renard (36 penalty following a long run of Delphine Cascarino from her own 20 yards), Sara Björk Gunnarsdóttir (49). Dzsenifer Marozsan scored her second goal with a lob from 40 yards. Sara Gunnarsdottir scored her goal with a lob also from 18 yards.

As we saw our second left back in this game, I would like to use this opportunity to present a comparison of their outstanding statistics. Selma Bacha: left back in the first half – 40 balls played: 34 passes (85% successful), one cross, three balls recovered, twice heading off the line with her goalkeeper beaten and no errors. Sakina Karchaoui: left back in the second half – 39 balls played: 32 passes (87% successful), seven balls recovered; no errors. We are so lucky at Lyon to have two of the best left backs in D1 which can also play as left midfielders.

Above: Ellie Carpenter charges forward for Olympique Lyonnais against Reims in the French Cup last weekend. Photo: @OLFeminin

Bordeaux at home needed 30 minutes to really take the game on their own but qualified against Le Havre 5–0. Pedro Martinez Losa, the Bordeaux coach, made a few changes which probably explain the slow start of the team. Goals for Bordeaux by Khadija Shaw (37, 56), Katja Snoeijs (39, 42), Inès Jaurena (75). Khadija Shaw continues to score in each game she plays, and her statistics are impressive: 14 games (13 in D1), 19 goals (17 in D1).

Dijon, at home, created the big surprise of this qualifying round by winning against Paris FC after a penalty shoot-out. At the end of the game both teams had scored 1 goal (Linda Sällström 28 for Paris FC and Desire Oparanozie 67 for Dijon).

A summary of the penalty shoot-out: Gaëtane Thiney, Paris FC (0-1), Léa Declercq, Dijon (1-1), Théa Greboval, Paris FC (1-2), Rose Lavaud, Dijon (2-2), Anaig Butel, Paris FC (outside), Hélène Fercocq, Dijon (3-2), Tess Laplacette, Paris FC (stopped by the goalkeeper), Salma Amani, Dijon (4-2).

Paris St. Germain won 2–0 away from home at Fleury to progress without any problems. Olivier Echouafni, Paris SG coach, made a few changes leaving Kadidiatou Diani (came on as a substitute in the 76th minute) and Marie-Antoinette Katoto (entered at the 82nd minute) at rest for most of the game and not selecting at all Christiane Endler and Formiga for this game. Goals for Paris SG by Sara Däbritz (30 penalty) and Signe Bruun (52). The D1 Arkema league leaders continue on the road of French Cup final. Will we have a Paris SG – Lyon final again?

Guingamp, at home, win the game in the opening fourteen minutes to win 3–0 against Soyaux. No surprise and no suspense in this game. Goals for Guingamp by Romane Munich (7 own goal), Sarah Cambot (10), Alison Peniguel (14). Romane Munich, Soyaux goalkeeper, was not lucky in this game as she released the ball on the first goal and when Alison Peniguel took advantage of a misunderstanding between her and one of her defenders on the third goal.

Issy qualified by winning at home against Montpellier 2-1. Goals for Issy by Julie Machart-Rabanne (14), Salma Zemzem (95). Goals for Montpellier by Maëlle Lakrar (53). This is another surprise of this 16th round. Even if Montpellier did not play badly, they were not able to bother Issy who probably wanted more to win than them. Issy, who are battling against relegation in D1 Arkema being tenth with only 7 points having played one game more than bottom club, Le Havre, who have five points. They were able to defeat the 4th  placed side of D1 Arkema. Montpellier are on a dangerous slope as their last win was five games ago and they practically already lost the battle for the third place in D1 Arkema. Issy’s win ensures they have now gone further than ever before in the French Cup.

Matthew Aumeeruddy: A Coach To Be Proud Of

This piece was originally published on the British Football Coaches website and can be accessed here: 1st Team, Academy & Community – Matthew Aumeeruddy (britishfootballcoaches.com)

Above: Matthew Aumeeruddy. Photo via: British Football Coaches.

How did you get into coaching and what has your path been like?

I’ve always had a passion for football for as long as I can remember. Although I enjoyed playing football, being autistic I struggled with the social side of football which meant I stopped playing football altogether around 13 years old. Nevertheless, I was still obsessed by football with an interest in football tactics and understanding why certain actions happened such as patterns of play. The more I watched and studied football the more I wanted to work within the industry, particularly at that elite level with an emphasis on the technical/tactical side of the game.

My first real taste of working within football was a work experience placement at Brentford FC Community Sports Trust when I was 15 years old. I continued to volunteer with trust and as well as well as starting my coaching qualification at the earliest possible age (16 years old). I then progressed to a paid role within the organisation while completing further coaching qualifications.

My next major step was to university and studying an undergraduate course in Sports Coaching Science (BSc) at St Mary’s University. This was an important course in gaining an understanding of the complexity of coaching, including the various disciplines that feed into it e.g. analysis, psychology, pedagogy for example. During my third year I completed my UEFA B Licence. I continued to coach at various places most notably with Staines Town college programme and with a newly formed women’s side called Ashford Town (Middlesex) FC with whom I still coach today with. My role at Ashford Town was is first team assistant head coach in which I deliver training session and devise playing strategies along with head coach Will Boye.

Most recently I returned to St Mary’s University for their newly launched postgraduate course performance football coaching (MSc). This was a great opportunity to improve my theoretically and practically knowledge. I wanted to do this alongside gaining an experience within a performance environment which I managed to gain as an intern at Barnet FC’s academy. Within this I managed to gain practical experiences observing and delivering alongside excellent coaches within different age groups as well as delivering on the 16-18 elite development programme. This was a great opportunity to learn and to put theory into practice.

After a season in the intern role, I then progressed to become a part time age group coach within the foundation phase of the academy, primarily working with the Under 11s. Unfortunately, the role ended when the academy closed in the summer of 2020.

Today, I have just finished completing the master’s in performance football coaching as well as still working as assistant head coach with the women’s team Ashford Town (Middlesex) which will be my 5th season with the team.

Any memorable experiences you would like to mention?

Above: Matthew working at Ashford Town (Middx) Photo via: British Football Coaches.

In terms of team achievements, the main ones that I always refer to are with Ashford Town. To have achieved four promotions in four years as well as winning various county and league cups is quite remarkable. We feel there is still much more to achieve as we believe we can progress even further up the women’s football pyramid.

From a personal perspective, I think my achievements have also been by recognizing certain milestones and landmarks for example completing degrees and coaching badges aswell as obtaining new coaching positions such as getting my first paid role at Brentford Community Trust through to become an Academy Coach at Barnet FC.

You mentioned that you were autistic, what does that mean and how do you feel it influences your ability to coach?

I specifically have what is formerly known as Asperger’s Syndrome (this now falls under the Autism Spectrum Disorder). It is very difficult to explain as it affects people in so many ways and each case is different from another. A generic understanding of autism is that it is a condition which social functioning and development. But I would encourage anyone who is interested to visit http://www.autism.org.uk in order to get a further understanding on it.

In my case, the main thing is reading the social dynamics and interpersonal interactions can be difficult to navigate. Nevertheless, I feel I have developed positively over the time and can read situations better the more experience I get. Another thing that I would also I would also point out that is that autistic people can have intense interests. I think in my case it is definitely football, in terms of it being that driven and detailed in my approach to the sport. I even leave a pen and paper beside my bed and sometimes wake up and write down ideas!

Do you see your autism as a potential barrier in realizing your ambitions of working within the elite game?

That is something I am keen to avoid! I think there comes a time where everyone has barriers to overcome in order to realize ambitions. I suppose the main reservations to people with autism working within the professional football industry are the ability have effective communication and build relationships with players and staff. In my case, I have recognized these as key areas that I need to be strong in and have made a conscious effort to develop these skills.

Especially when I was in the academy office at Barnet FC, I felt I have positively developed my ability to “read the room” and gauge what interactions are appropriate with the different stakeholders considering their characteristics. All in all, I believe the experiences I have gained so far within different environments (senior men’s, women’s football, youth football across different ages and abilities) and personal qualities such as dedication, respectfulness and loyal nature have served me well so far and I will continue to further develop these in the future.

How would you describe your approach to coaching including skills sets you possess?

I am very detailed in my approach, using evidence-based methodology and looking to utilize all resources available to achieve objectives. This means I have needed to develop a side in which I can confidently adapt to the context in which I am working in.

I very much have the players at the forefront of my mind and try to develop positive communication with them in order to understand how best to facilitate their development. I would say my strongest skills sets lie within the technical/tactical details of the game. I have a very analytical mind and enjoy identifying technical/tactical patterns and problems and then devising practices to deliver based on what was identified.

What’s been best for your career development so far and what do you do to keep upskilled?

I would say the undergraduate and postgraduate courses have had a large impact on my development as they went beyond the standard courses run by the FA in terms of knowledge around coaching practice. Most importantly, during the latter part of my undergraduate and throughout my postgraduate, it helped me develop critical thinking skills in order to analyze different approaches to coaching and player development.

In terms of developing football knowledge, I would have to point towards the informal learning such as observing other coaches working within different contexts. One example that still resonates was watching sessions at Brentford FC academy, before it was closed, and seeing the environment that was created and standards at which coaches operated. This provided a template for me to inspire to. I continually look to discover and opportunities new ideas. For me every day is an opportunity to learn!

How’s the future looking for yourself?

I still have the ambition of working fulltime within the elite game at senior or youth level whether that being as a head coach, assistant head coach, specialist coach or in recruitment.

I am currently looking for my next role within an elite setting such as an academy where I can positively contribute as well as continue developing my skills set within that context.

From an education perspective, my next steps are to go onto the UEFA A Licence and Advanced Youth Award. As well as continuously engaging in informal learning activities such as observational study visits to continuing to upskill myself.

Above: Matthew pointing the way to success. Photo via: British Football Coaches.

Name, age, where are you based?

Matthew Aumeeruddy, 25 years old, London, England

Current and past Roles:

First Team Assistant Head Coach – Ashford Town (Middlesex) Women’s Football Club.

Academy Coach – Barnet Football Club.

Community Sports Coach – Brentford FC Community Sports Trust.

Qualifications:

UEFA B Licence.

FA Youth Award.

Sports Coaching Science (BSc) with First Class Honours.

Performance Football Coaching (MSc).

Sky Blues Go Clear

Sydney FC 2–0 Newcastle Jets

Report and EXCLUSIVE PHOTOS from Kris Goman.

On a drizzly Sunday evening, there’s a surprisingly decent crowd to watch Newcastle take on undefeated ladder leaders Sydney FC at Cromer Park in Manly.

Above: Tessa Tamplin (left) fires in a cross against Sydney FC yesterday. Photo: Kris Goman.

Newcastle kicks off. Straight from the kick off Tara Andrews, in her 100th W-League game, gets the ball at the top of the box and takes a shot on goal. It’s safely in the hands of Jada Mathyssen-Whyman but it’s a bit of a shock for Sydney to start.


It’s back up the other end quickly and it looks like we’ve got a game on our hands as Remy Siemsen starts her campaign. Newcastle defence are all over it though and soon enough the Jets are attacking again. 


Rhianna Pollicina is blocked but it goes over to Lauren Allan whose shot goes to the left of goal. Both teams starting off strong.

An attacking push by the Jets sees the first corner to be taken by Gema Simon. It goes to the near post but Alisha Bass heads it across the goal and away from the strikers and Sydney now have possession. A run down the left flank by Clare Wheeler is initially thwarted but the Ally Green does a 1-2 with Wheeler and takes a shot from the left outside the box that’s on target and has Claire Coelho at full stretch to tip it over the crossbar. 


Teresa Polias’ corner kick goes to Ellie Brush at the back post who heads it just over the crossbar. Sydney have turned up the heat now and a Jets back pass goes astray for another corner. The corner is cleared and Newcastle’s defence holds strong during an extended period in the box.

At 20 minutes in, Sydney look marginally on top with the game mostly in their half. Pollicina takes a long range strike but it isn’t dangerous and goes straight into the hands of Mathyssen-Whyman.

From the mid field, Polias sends a long ball to Princess Ibini. She flicks it up and heads it onto Siemsen but it’s not controlled and ends up in the hands of Coelho. A few more attacking runs come to little but then Ibini picks it up again in the midfield and dribbles towards the box unchallenged. She passes to Mackenzie Hawkesby who sends it on to Vine at the top right of the box. She calmly lobs a shot from just outside the box that Coelho can’t quite reach and it goes into the left side of the goal and Sydney hit the lead, 1-0. Vine is cool as a cucumber after the goal and waits for her teammates to run up to congratulate her. 


Five minutes later and Cortnee Vine brings the ball into the box from the left. A shot is well blocked and rebounds to Green who sends to Siemsen in front of goal. She deflects the ball past Coelho into goal but she’s offside. She’s got a wry smile but accepts it.

Another attack by Sydney ends with a slide tackle by Hannah Brewer. Sydney are making good use of the space and keep switching play from side to side with long passes.

Just before half time, Newcastle transition but Pollicina only gets a very weak shot on goal that is easily gathered by Mathyssen-Whyman who hasn’t been too busy for a while.

Early in the second half, a tussle, or more like a spot of wrestling, between Taren King and Siemsen sees King get a yellow card. There’s been a few clashes where both players have ended up on the deck so far but this is the first yellow of the match. The resulting free kick is taken by Polias and everyone’s lined about two metres from the top of the box.

Above: Newcastle Jets’ Taren King (left) goes in for a midfield challenge. Photo: Kris Goman.

She slips it low past the wall and Vine runs onto it in the clear with just Coelho between her and a goal. She shoots high to the right and Coelho is able to bat it down with both hands on what looked to initially be a certain goal. Turns out Vine was offside anyway so even if she got it past Coelho, it would have been disallowed.

In another attack, Hawkesby passes through to Wheeler who brings it down the right side and crosses to Siemsen who tries to head the ball but misses. Ibini chases it down and passes to Green who lobs it back to the centre but the Jets manage to clear it.

Ally Green, who’s having a blinder of a game, brings the ball down midfield and gets tackled but does some tricky footwork, a spin and a lunge and then gets a push in the back to eat some dirt but gets a free kick for her trouble. The free kick is in almost exactly the same spot as the one Vine nearly scored from and is set up the same way. This time it ends up out on the far side-line and the throw in results in a corner.

The corner clearance ends up with Simon who passes to Sunny Franco who dribbles down towards the right corner but then switches back to Tessa Tamplin who loses possession. It’s the first time Newcastle have looked dangerous this half.

A long clearance by Sydney ends at the feet of Coelho with Siemsen rushing her. She fumbles with the ball at her feet but clears it. Davis tries to move it on but Ibini has other ideas and relieves her of possession and takes off down the left. Cassidy Davis trails closely behind but gets tangled in her feet and they both hit the deck with a thud. Davis gets the second yellow of the match. King heads the free kick over the crossbar safely for a corner.

The corner is once again the start of a transition play for the Jets and sees Allen running down the left with Sydney in hot pursuit. She brings it into the box and Green has managed to get back and clears it perfectly and quite spectacularly.

Above: Lauren Allan crosses into the box for the Jets. Photo: Kris Goman.


Harding comes on for Allen. The Sydney goal kick goes to Green who sends it upfield to Coelho with Siemsen closing quickly. The pressure sees Coelho sky the ball. When it eventually comes down from space, Siemsen, Ibini and Tamplin are there. Siemsen chests it to the right and strikes. Coelho has recovered enough to touch it but not to stop it and the ball sails into goal. Siemsen gets her long awaited first goal of the season and celebrates appropriately. 2-0 Sydney. 

Almost straight after, Vine sends a perfectly placed cross to Siemsen’s head but it’s deflected to the left of goal.

A ball is sent across from Harding to Tamplin. Green beats her to it and kicks it out. It looks like it deflects off Tamplin lower leg on the way out but Tamplin thinks Green kicked it out and picks up the ball for a throw in. The linesman indicates the other way and then Tamplin just boots the ball sky high in defiance. That goes down like a lead balloon and earns her an immediate yellow card for a moment of stupidity. 

Above: Sydney FC’s Mackenzie Hawkesby (left) in a tangle with Newcastle Jets’ Sunny Franco. Photo: Kris Goman,


Green gets about five more throw ins as the ball goes in and out along the side-line. She gets a ball back to her and starts dribbling but is tripped by Franco and is on the ground face down again. And guess what? It’s another yellow card, this time for Franco. At this stage Newcastle are making some really dumb mistakes. Almost immediately afterwards, Pollicina yanks on Wheeler’s arm to bring her to the ground in a judo style move. It’s a free kick and I think yet another yellow.

Play gets back to relative normal. A ball is sent down the centre and Ibini is on it like a gazelle. She sidesteps King in the box and it’s just her and Coelho when Brewer comes screaming in, and in a sensational slide tackle and clears it out of the box.

With about 12 minutes to go, Brewer brings the ball down the left and sends a long ball into the box, beating the Sydney defence. Mathyssen-Whyman comes out of goal to clear it and then collides with a defender before running back to goal. In the meantime the ball has landed in front of Andrews but Brush is able to clear it in a very close call.

Then Tamplin gets the ball at the top right of the box and has an unimpeded shot at goal. It’s just high and lands on top of the net instead of in it. Newcastle have settled down a bit and finally trying to come back.

Pollicina sends a beautiful pass through the centre of the Sydney defence for House to run onto in the box. She’s onside and it’s just her and Mathyssen-Whyman. The Sydney goalkeeper comes out and throws herself sideways at the ball and gathers it as House leaps over her. Mathyssen-Whyman is suddenly very busy and engaged and proving her worth.

Above: Sydney FC goalkeeper Jada Mathyssen-Whyman looks on as her defence tries to tidy up. Photo: Kris Goman.


Newcastle continue to attack but can’t make any serious inroads through the Sydney defence. In a final fling, Harding sends the ball across goal from the right. It goes slightly behind House and hits her hip. She’s able to give it to Pollicina right in front of goal. She sends the ball flying over the crossbar instead of into the net for what should have been a sitter.


The match ends with Sydney on a for match winning streak conceding only one goal over that period, although they have only played Newcastle and Western Sydney Wanderers twice each so far. The Sky Blues are now clear at the top of the table as well which should make the fans very happy.

In the end, it was a well-deserved win. Sydney were able to finish and didn’t lose their cool. The same couldn’t be said for Newcastle with four or five yellow cards in that crazy period in the middle of the match.

Teresa Polias got Player of the Match and while she’s always solid, I was a little surprised by this. I really thought Ally Green should have got this award. She had a couple of incredible goal-saving tackles and was all over the field in both attack and defence. A truly outstanding effort.

Teams: SYDNEY FC: Mathyssen-Whyman, Mclean, Green, Tobin, Brush, Polias, Wheeler, Hawkesby, Siemsen, Vine, Ibini. Substitutes: Offer (GK), Hristodoulou, Ray, Toby.

Scorers: Vine 32, Siemsen 61.

NEWCASTLE JETS: Coelho, Tamplin, Simon, King, Brewer, Bass, Franco, Davis, Pollicina, Allan, Andrews. Substitutes: Simonsen, O’Brien, Petratos, Harding, House.

Referee: Kelly Jones.

Attendance: 1,329.

 PWDLFAPtsGD
Sydney FC44009112+ 8
Canberra United532011611+ 5
Brisbane Roar624011410+ 7
Adelaide United5302879+ 1
Melbourne Victory5212997=
Newcastle Jets5113784– 1
Melbourne City61147154– 8
Western Sydney Wanderers51043133– 10
Perth Glory3012241– 2

Top four sides qualify for the finals at the end of the regular season.

Impetus’ coverage of Australian Women’s Football is supported by The Chicken Salt Co. They are offering every Impetus reader 5% off all orders of Chicken Salt from their website. Go to https://www.chickensalt.co.uk/?mate=impetus and place your order – 5% will automatically be taken off of the cost. The coupon code is impetus.

Artwork: Graphics by PW

Chelsea’s Class Too Much For Spurs

Chelsea 4–0 Tottenham Hotspur

by Ben Gilby

Chelsea maintained their position at the summit of the Barclays FA Women’s Super League after overcoming an uncomfortable opening twenty minutes to eventually dispatch Tottenham Hotspur with ease at Kingsmeadow.

Above: Sam Kerr heads home Chelsea’s third goal against Tottenham Hotspur at Kingsmeadow this afternoon. Photo: @BarclaysFAWSL.

In the team news before the game, Chelsea lost Erin Cuthbert from the squad and kept Academy players Jorja Fox and Aggie Beever-Jones on the bench for the second time in a week.

Tottenham Hotspur boss Rehanne Skinner handed Abbie McManus her debut following her move from Manchester United with Aurora Mikalsen also making her first start in goal.

Spurs were noticeably targeting their early attacks down the left hand side but the first main opportunity fell in the home side’s favour. Fran Kirby played in Guro Reiten down left and the Norwegian cut in and played in a high bouncing ball which Sam Kerr lifted over the bar.

Spurs created two great opportunities in quick succession after the ten minute mark. First Jessica Naz was fouled on the left wing. Kit Graham’s free kick was played in and was met with a header by Ria Percival which fell to Alana Kennedy whose shot was blocked and deflected out to Shelina Zadorsky. Her great curling effort which just went over.

Graham came close seconds later after being played in by Percival and the Chatham born player hit a shot which off the right hand post with Ann-Katrin Berger beaten.

With nineteen minutes played, Graham was unlucky once more as she was played in by Kerys Harrop, turned and her effort forced a great save from Berger.

Chelsea responded with Fran Kirby after a move down the right involving Mjelde and Kerr. The Lionesses’ star, in great recent form hit the side netting on the right hand side.

Spurs conceded a free kick which Reiten played short to Ji. Spurs thought they had cleared the danger, but Ji took possession near the centre circle and found Melanie Leupolz in space. The German ran the ball forward before unleashing a sensational effort into the net from over 25 yards.

Less than ten minutes later, Spurs were further punished for not taking one of their early opportunities when Pernille Harder doubled Chelsea’s lead. Aurora Mikalsen’s loose clearance was gobbled up by Kirby who took the ball down the right, cut in and played a low ball into the feet of Harder who was in space. Abbie McManus tried to head Harder’s shot clear but only succeeded in wrong-footing her own goalkeeper and the ball ended up in the net.

Above: Abbie McManus (right) had a mixed debut for Spurs.Here she is seen accelerating away from Pernille Harder. Photo: @SpursWomen

Spurs were now finding it extremely hard to maintain possession. This plus a worrying habit of continually giving Chelsea’s stars far too much space directly led to Chelsea’s third goal seven minutes before the break.

Harder was free yet again down the left and played in an inch perfect cross to Sam Kerr who came in to the far post unmarked to nod home the sort of goal that is her trademark for The Matildas.

Chelsea were absolutely rampant at this stage with their wide players causing Spurs major headaches down both flanks. The North Londoners were grateful to hear the half-time whistle before the score line could get worse.

Spurs lined up at the second half with four at the back and five in midfield and it ensured that Chelsea’s momentum was halted in the early exchanges at least.

Seven minutes into the second period, Chelsea earned a corner. Guro Reiten’s ball in was met first time on the volley by Pernille Harder with her rocket headed off of the line by Ria Percival.

Harder had another chance when found by Fran Kirby, but Spurs managed to ensure that the hosts lead was not extended.

Within seconds of coming on to replace Sam Kerr, Beth England won a penalty after her cross in hit the elbow of Kerys Harrop. Up stepped Melanie Leupolz on sixty-three minutes and the German comfortably sent Mikalsen the wrong way as she dispatched the ball right into the bottom left corner.

Above: Guro Reiten gets a cross in despite the close attention of Tottenham’s Ashleigh Neville. Photo: @SpursWomen.

With just over twenty minutes left, Ji was allowed to dance through the midfield and played a ball out to Hannah Blundell who earned a corner from Harrop which Spurs cleared at the second attempt.

Jessie Fleming had a great chance shortly after when Harder found her on the right hand side of the box. The Canadian fired in a great effort which Aurora Mikalsen pushed away for a corner. Reiten’s ball in was met again by Harder, this time on the half-volley and it went just over the bar.

Chelsea were now once more extremely comfortable on the ball and could have extended their lead further before the end.

With ten minutes left, Sophie Ingle hit a long ball which England nodded down to Reiten who stretched out to get a toe on to ball which Mikalsen did well to hold.

Ji then came close after being played through and toe poked a weak effort against a Spurs defender for a corner which the visitors dealt with comfortably.

Chelsea had two further chances just before the final whistle. First, Leupolz combined with Reiten on the left hand side. The Norway international back heeled a pass to Drew Spence who drove an effort wide. Then, England laid off to Ji who was once more in acres of space. The South Korean sorcerer hit a super effort which narrowly failed to hit the target.

Chelsea’s win was routine in the end, condemning Tottenham to their first defeat under Rehanne Skinner. Their new head coach will no doubt emphasise the importance of taking chances against the very best sides when they come your way.

Teams: CHELSEA: Berger, Mjelde, Bright, Eriksson, Andersson, Leupolz, Ji, Reiten, Kirby, Harder, Kerr. Substitutes: Blundell, Ingle England, Fleming, Spence, Telford (GK), Fox, Beever-Jones.

Scorers: Leupolz 27, pen 63. Harder 29. Kerr 38.

TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR: Mikalsen, Percival, Harrop, Zadorsky, Neville, Kennedy, McManus, Davison, Graham, Addison, Naz. Substitutes: Green, Filbey, Dean, Cho, Quinn, Ayane, Martin, Morgan.

Referee: Sarah Garratt.

Hecher Super Strike Settles See-Saw Battle

Melbourne City 2–3 Brisbane Roar

By Ben Gilby.

A brilliant strike by Mariel Hecher earned Brisbane Roar their second straight win after starting the season with four consecutive draws. The Brazilian’s effort settled a see-saw encounter at AAMI Park and came just three minutes after the hosts levelled from being 2-0 down.

Above: Brisbane Roar’s Mariel Hecher celebrates her sensational match winner at AAMI Park. Photo: @WLeague.

The first opportunity of the game fell to Melbourne City with Matildas defender Jenna McCormick battling her way into the box before appearing to be tugged to the ground by fellow international Emily Gielnik, but referee Casey Reibelt waved away the Sky Blues’ penalty claims.

As the game entered its second quarter, the Queenslanders became increasingly dominant but a series of great saves from Teagan Micah in the City goal meant that they did not quite get the scoreboard lead that their pressure deserved. A familiar story for the Roar this season.

A golden chance was created when Tameka Yallop played in Gielnik, but Micah did well to save.

They did take the lead on the twenty-third minute when a corner was met by a thumping header by Clare Polkinghorne from the left of the box. The Matildas star didn’t need to jump to make contact and scored despite having City defenders McCormick and Rhali Dobson tight to her.

Six minutes later, Brisbane doubled their lead when Yallop got through and hit a shot which came off the hand of City’s Samantha Johnson and Casey Reibelt had no choice but to point to the spot. Up stepped Gielnik to confidently smash her penalty into the right hand of the net, sending Micah the wrong way.

Micah had better luck against Gielnik shortly after when the City stopper made a great save from the Brisbane star’s curling effort which was heading for the top corner. Gielnik also smashed a shot against the bar before the break.

It was not all Brisbane in the opening stanza as Georgina Worth had to stand tall to deny Chinatsu Kira on several occasions. Dobson also hit an effort against the bar as City looked to hit back.

Within seconds of the second half opening, City got a foothold in the game at last when a poor goal kick by Georgina Worth went straight to the home side’s Kira. The Japanese star slid an instant pass to Alex Chidiac. The midfielder’s effort deflected off Clare Polkinghorne’s shoulder and into the far corner of the net.

Above: Melbourne City’s Tyla-Jay Vlajnic battles against Mariel Hecher of Brisbane Roar. Photo: @WLeague.

This spurred City on to greater efforts. Chinatsu Kira was denied once more by Worth after being played in by Tori Tumeth.

With just over a quarter of an hour left, Melbourne City finally levelled. Olivia Chance fouled Alex Chidiac and a penalty was awarded. Up stepped Samantha Johnson who slotted it into the left hand corner with Worth diving the wrong way.

Kira had another effort saved by Worth in the aftermath. To City’s chagrin, the rebound came out to Tyla-Jay Vlajnic but her shot was disappointingly far too high.

The home side’s efforts were all for naught as within minutes they were behind again. Mariel Hecher was found on the right and she drove in a superb cross shot in off the far post.

This will be a frustrating loss for Melbourne City – they had the momentum and the chances in the second half to earn a statement win against unbeaten opponents.

Brisbane Roar may have played more games than everyone else, but with no losses in six games, it will take something to stop them being a major player in the Finals now.

Teams: MELBOURNE CITY: Micah, Checker, Vlajnic, Eckhoff, Dobson, Davidson, Chidiac, Palmer, Kira. Substitutes: Barbieri (GK), Allen, Tumeth, Cain, Withers.

Scorers: Chidiac 46, Johnson (pen) 73.

BRISBANE ROAR: Worth, Heatley, Rankin, Polkinghorne, Carroll, Chance, Freier, Dalton, Hecher, Gielnik, Yallop. Substitutes: Aquino (GK), Torpey, Margraf, McKenna.

Scorers: Polkinghorne 23, Gielnik 31, Hecher 75.

Referee: Casey Reibelt.

Attendance: 1,975.

Impetus’ coverage of Australian Women’s Football is supported by The Chicken Salt Co. They are offering every Impetus reader 5% off all orders of Chicken Salt from their website. Go to https://www.chickensalt.co.uk/?mate=impetus and place your order – 5% will automatically be taken off of the cost. The coupon code is impetus.

Artwork: Graphics by PW

Heroic Heyman Hits Hat-Trick

Canberra United 3-0 Western Sydney Wanderers

By Ben Gilby

Canberra United’s unbeaten run in the W-League season continued as Michelle Heyman hit a first half hat-trick in a comfortable win at Viking Park to draw level with Sam Kerr at the top of the competition’s all time goal scoring list with seventy goals.

Above: Canberra United’s superstar Michelle Heyman celebrating one of her strikes against Western Sydney Wanderers at Viking Park. Photo: @WLeague

Both sides started the game with new goalkeepers between the sticks. Keeley Richards made her debut for Canberra United, with Sarah Willacy coming in for Courtney Newbon in the Wanderers goal. There is no doubt who will be the more delighted with the outcome.

The side from the capital were in red hot form from the very start. With just three minutes played, Laura Hughes played a short pass into Michelle Heyman on the far left hand corner of the box. She turned and fired a superb effort into the top of the net which Willacy had no chance with.

Wanderers mounted a rare effort on goal ten minutes later when Georgia Yeoman-Dale turned Isabella Foletta and charged down the left and then into the box where she played a lovely pass back to Leena Khamis whose toyed with Jessika Nash before unleashing an effort which was brilliantly saved by Keeley Richards.

Just after the half-hour mark Canberra deservedly doubled their advantage when a ball played over the top by Kendall Fletcher found Nikki Flannery on the left hand side of the pitch. She saw Heyman run between Wanderers’ last two defenders Courtney Nevin and Caitlin Cooper and slotted in a perfect pass to the United striker to notch hers and Canberra’s second.

Above: A midfield tussle between Canberra Untied and Western Sydney Wanderers. Photo: @WSWanderers.

It got even worse for Western Sydney just before the break when Grace Maher’s corner was easily met by Heyman to tap home her hat-trick goal at the far post following some non-existent Wanderers defence.

The visitors had the first real chance of the second period when Libby Copus-Brown was denied by another impressive save from debutant Keeley Richards.

Sarah Willacy had her own moment in the sun after a disappointing first half when she held Laura Hughes’ rocket.

Teams: CANBERRA UNITED: Richards, Foletta, Ilijoski, Nash, Keir, Fletcher, Hughes, Maher, Heyman, Flannery, Taylor-Young.  Substitutes: Jones (GK), Rasschaert, Galic, Koulizakis, Satchell.

Scorers: Heyman 3, 34, 41.

WESTERN SYDNEY WANDERERS: Willacy, Orgill, Nevin, Cooper, Collister, Russell, Hunter, Price, Copus-Brown, Yeoman-Dale, Khamis. Substitutes: Newbon (GK), Gomez, Galea, Matos, Henry.

Referee: Lara Lee.

Attendance: 1,049.

Impetus’ coverage of Australian Women’s Football is supported by The Chicken Salt Co. They are offering every Impetus reader 5% off all orders of Chicken Salt from their website. Go to https://www.chickensalt.co.uk/?mate=impetus and place your order – 5% will automatically be taken off of the cost. The coupon code is impetus.

Artwork: Graphics by PW

Enigma of Victory

Adelaide United 0-1 Melbourne Victory

By Kieran Yap.

Adelaide entered this game on the back of a three game winning streak and with their only loss coming in the opening game in a seven-goal thriller. The Reds are starting to be whispered about as finals contenders and a win here would be a big step toward that goal.

Melbourne Victory began the round as somewhat of an enigma, they thrashed Melbourne City by six goals but two weeks later lost to Brisbane by the same margin, they were looking to bounce back and welcomed the returning Lisa De Vanna into the side although she started on the bench.

The first half was a cagey affair, neither side was able to gain any lasting momentum, both sides were rushed in midfield and struggled to penetrate each other’s defence. Maria Rojas, Adelaide’s Chilean star was deployed mostly as an out and out striker, trying to get in behind the back four but Claudia Bunge was focused and persistent in preventing Rojas from having an easy afternoon.

Above: Melbourne Victory’s Melina Ayres (right) who had an assist for her team’s only goal, takes on the Adelaide United defence. Photo: @WLeague.

Victory’s best avenue to goal seemed to be Angie Beard’s marauding runs down the left flank but her opposing fullback Charlotte Grant also had an early moment of magic when she skipped between two Melbourne players to cross early in the game.

Kyra Cooney-Cross had her claim for a spectacular goal denied when her in-swinging corner was dropped by goalkeeper Fryer-McLaren and the ball bounced off the inside of the near post. Victory players appealed and Melina Ayres began to celebrate but the referee and assistants were un-moved, no goal.

Fiona Worts responded for The Reds with a dash down the left and a dangerous cross that caused a moment of panic for Melbourne, the ball bobbled to Chelsie Dawber who sliced the ball over the bar when trying to find a gap between defenders.

Adelaide’s best chance came when Rojas ran onto a long ball and raced into the penalty area with only the ‘keeper to beat. She appeared certain to score and Garton did very well to stay on her feet and close down the angle, Rojas would’ve been disappointed not to finish more emphatically, but it was still a solid save. 

The second half was more open, Victory made some position adjustments with Privitelli switching to the right wing to inject some pace into the Melbourne attac. Adelaide defended with determination but struggled to get in sync in the forward areas. One of the most fun things about The Reds this season has been that a different player seems to pop up as a match winner each game, but this week they were struggling to find one. Fiona Worts looked most likely to break the deadlock with a good opportunity that Garton again was equal to.

Eventually Victory played their trump card, Lisa De Vanna came on and immediately showed her class with a clever turn in midfield and some aggressive pressing on the defenders.

Melbourne had been more aggressive in the second half and when the goal came it felt deserved. Angela Beard hit a deep free kick to the far post, Melina Ayres had the vision and technique to nod the ball back across goal and Catherine Zimmerman out jumped two defenders to head into goal off the crossbar.

Above: Despite the best efforts of Georgia Campagnale, Adelaide United fell to their first loss since their first game of the season. Photo: @AUFCWomen

Not satisfied to defend the slim lead, Victory kept up the attacking pressure, De Vanna found space on the left and whipped in a cross that Cooney-Cross was unlucky not to reach despite a desperate lunging attempt at a diving header.

One goal ended up being enough and Melbourne celebrated their second win of the season. They looked much more like the team of the first two rounds than the one that was overrun by The Roar last week and showed here that they could win in a scrappy tight finals-like physical game.  They do look a different proposition when De Vanna is on the park and keeping her fit will be paramount in Jeff Hopkins plans.

Adelaide was beaten, but not easily, they have become a difficult team to play against and the gap between the team’s best and worst form is closing. The moments of magic that had gotten results deserted them but hopefully they return next week, this was the first game of the season they have failed to score and the first game they have not been in a winning position at any point. The bar has been set high by their own performances and they will be aware of their own potential.

Note: I have elected not to address the elephant (or random mouse-clicking, euphonium owning man) in the room and instead just focus on the game… as we expect and demand the broadcasters can find a way to do from here on.

Teams: ADELAIDE UNITED: Fryer-McLaren, Grant, I. Hodgson, McNamara, Walder, Holmes, Campagnale, Condon, Dawber, Rojas, Worts. Substitutes: Grove (GK), E. Hodgson, Hogg, Kirkby, Mullan.

MELBOURNE VICTORY: Garton, Privitelli, Beard, Bunge, Morrison, Barbieri, Martineau, Jackson, Zimmerman, Cooney-Cross, Ayres. Substitutes: Maizels (GK), Doran, Markovski, Zois, De Vanna.

Scorer: Zimmerman 78.

Referee: Rebecca Durcau.

Attendance: 1,105.

Impetus’ coverage of Australian Women’s Football is supported by The Chicken Salt Co. They are offering every Impetus reader 5% off all orders of Chicken Salt from their website. Go to https://www.chickensalt.co.uk/?mate=impetus and place your order – 5% will automatically be taken off of the cost. The coupon code is impetus.

Artwork: Graphics by PW

The Swedish Scene

@DandalBs brings us his weekly round-up of all the women’s football news from Sweden. This week, the news is dominated by the conclusion of the saga surrounding the future of reigning Damallsvenkan champions Kopparbergs/Göteborg.

Kopparbergs/Göteborg are still claiming the women’s football headlines in Sweden. On Wednesday evening, BK Häcken‘s members, after a long and intense debate, decided by 416 votes to 35 to take over Kopparbergs/Göteborg which will prevent the reigning Damallsvenskan champions from leaving the competition. Everything was completely finalised twenty-four hours later when at their annual general meeting, Kopparbergs/Göteborg accepted BK Häcken’s offer. The club will play in the 2021 Damallsvenskan under the name BK Häcken FF.

Above: Bravida Arena, the home of the new BK Häcken FF women’s team. Photo: Göteborgs-Posten

Local newspaper Göteborgs-Posten will webcast BK Häcken FF’s first match, a friendly against Jitex, on Wednesday next week. The same newspaper also showed action from the club’s first ever training session under their new name which took place at the club’s 6,500 capacity Bravida Arena.

At the start of the week, the club lost 28 year-old Julia Roddar to Washington Spirit.

It is rumoured that now Kopparbergs/Göteborg’s future is secured, their major financial backer Peter Bronsman will look to invest in a FA Women’s Super League side, with Reading looking like a particularly likely destination for him. Bronsman continues to deny the rumour.

NEWS IN BRIEF:

The schedule for the 2021 Damallsvenskan season has been finalised. The first round of matches will take place on the weekend of 17th-18th April. Newly promoted Hammarby will host reigning champions and newly named BK Häcken FF with fellow new side AIK travelling to Växjö. Elsewhere, Djurgården host KIF Örebro, Vittsjö are home to Piteå, Eskilstuna United welcome Kristianstads and Linköping host FC Rosengård.

Kristianstad‘s coach Elísabet Gunnarsdottir has announced that she will not take the position as Iceland’s new national coach. Speaking about the strong speculation linking her with the job, Gunnarsdottir said: “It’s no secret I’m very interested in the job, but the offer came late and I won’t desert a team I have just made plans with.”

Dajan Hashemi, who recently left Hammarby, has signed a contract with FC Nordsjælland in Denmark.

Above: Caroline Murray unveiled by AIK alongside manager Anne Mäkinen. Photo: Maxim Thoré, Bildbyrån

AIK have signed 27 year-old American winger Caroline Murray ahead of their return to the Damallsvenskan. Murray has played in Finland, Iceland and had spent the last three years in the second tier Elitettan where she played against AIK most recently for Sunnanå.

Anthony Murray: Latest Addition To Sutton United’s Talented Coaching Staff

As part of our sponsorship and partnership with sixth tier Sutton United Women, Impetus founder Ben Gilby spoke to Anthony Murray who will take over the club’s new U21 side for the 2021/22 season. In the piece Anthony discusses his aims for the brand new side he will be putting together over the coming weeks and months.

Above: Anthony Murray – the latest addition to Sutton United Women’s hugely talented coaching staff. Photo: Michael Brownie.

Anthony has a strong background in London football as he explained: “I’ve had a great career playing youth football for various academies such as Queen’s Park Rangers, Leyton Orient and Charlton Athletic, I played professional football abroad for a season as well as various semi-professional clubs between step one and five. My coaching career started pretty young. While playing academy football, lots of kids on my housing estate around 2004 begged for me to coach them as they wanted to prepare for a tournament and because we went quite far they then went and spoke to the council about getting me onto my FA Level One Coaching Badge. This then saw me coaching at London Tigers FC with their youth development programme and with Westminster Sports Unit.” 

This led to Anthony applying for the role of Under 21s manager at Sutton United Women, a club who are making rapid strides up the league system with a record already in their short history of developing a number of hugely talented young players who have come through their ranks into the first team. Not surprisingly, this made the club an attractive proposition for Anthony: “Throughout my playing career, I’ve come across Sutton United many times at Gander Green Lane and it’s always has been a pleasant place to be. Sutton United are a great family and community oriented club and this is what attracted me to be part of the setup. Sutton are all about developing players in house and progressing them up the ranks and that’s what I’m about developing players and giving them opportunities.”

“From the first team down to the youth section the coaches and players are massive on development and giving player opportunities. We aren’t a club with a budget which allows us to go and bring players in so we know we have to go out onto the field to find players and advertise through word of mouth. Sutton United have big ambitions to progress up the tiers and this doesn’t happen unless you have a player pathway from the youth section upwards and putting a RTC and post 16 section in place.”

The club’s current U21s, who will be moving up to U23 level next season with their existing manager Courtney Bartlett and coaching staff have had an exceptionally strong season when they have been allowed to take to the field due to the pandemic – something which Anthony hopes to build on with his own squad when he takes over next season: “Yes, the present U21s have had a great season to date and it would have been amazing to see them continue into the second half of the season to see if they could’ve gone the full distance in winning the league title. Clearly they are a competitive side which can score goals, defend and compete when things get tough games.”

Above: Anthony is full of positivity about Sutton United’s new U21 side for 2021/22. Photo: Michael Brownie.

“With bringing a new U21 team together next season, you never know what you’ll get, so it’s about seeing what happens at the trials and then work on the team cohesion. The plan is to develop a team that will continue to enjoy playing football but also develop as people, want to compete and become problem solvers in games ready for the first team.”

We briefly alluded to the impact of the pandemic on the season, so I asked Anthony to talk a bit more about how he is trying to maintain contact with his players: “It’s massively difficult at this moment in time as football up and down the country is suspended in the non-elite game, as well as it being difficult for many families and business being hit by the financial side of lockdown and people’s mental health.”

“With the current crop of players I’m working with, we try to keep in touch with them as much as possible via Zoom and discussing various topics around football especially analysing previous matches, providing training programmes they can do at home and also giving them the opportunity to communicate with the staff one to one whether that be football related or things going on at home.”

Anthony is also desperate for the sport to re-start, but he is using the time constructively at present: “ I’m itching to get started. In the background I’m putting many things in place so we can get firing as quickly as possible. The main priority once the government and the FA give us the green light will be to organise trials as well as travelling to matches within and around the Sutton area to see players in action.” 

Above: Anthony at work at Charlton Athletic Women. Photo: Michael Brownie.

In terms of Anthony’s aims for himself and the women’s game in the short to medium term, he is extremely optimistic: “I’ve been blessed to be inspired by some great female players growing up such as Eartha Pond, Rachel Yankee and Lois Roche and to see where the women’s game is now is amazing. We’ve had England v USA in the World Cup being the most viewed female international game, various winners in the FAWSL, a massive pool of young talent coming through at every level. To think the women’s game was banned for fifty years and look how far it’s progressed organically with not much of a budget to work with and games being televised. I feel the women’s game will be showing FAWSL games on terrestrial television, increase in funding at grassroots to professional level and both the FA Women’s Championship and tier three clubs being able to have professional status.”

Sutton United are a club well worth keeping a close eye on – and that is something we at Impetus will be doing over the coming months and seasons. 

The Ladies League: Full of Passion, Full of Football and Full of Fun

Ben Gilby spoke to Rose Valente from The Ladies League You Tube Channel and Podcast in Australia. The group describe the podcast as being by the fans “for the fans” and run by “a group of female football fans covering football in Australia. Content is heavily influenced by our passion, videos are low budget, interviews are what the fans want to hear and live commentary via Twitter is unapologetic.”

Rose opened our conversation by telling me all about how the podcast started: “It started how everything else we do started, by a snap decision I made and said ‘who’s in’ to the chat. The Podcast is only new for us, we have been making videos/documentaries on our YouTube channel, TLL TV, as well as writing articles which have now relocated to www.thereserveteam.com.au as we are currently restructuring our organisation. In the Australian football scene, nobody (that we knew of) had a strong dedicated women’s football podcast. There are so many A-League podcasts but no one really focused directly on W-League, which is where we wanted to come in. We started by covering the Aussies abroad and in the WSL and we are now doing weekly shows with the W-League underway. I think the only way to describe it is chaotic. Our podcast is exactly how we are at the pub watching a game. We’re yelling at each other, there’s no order and we always go over time!”

The majority of women’s football supporters in England don’t really appreciate just what a big deal The Matildas are in Australia. This itself is pretty incredible given the fact that in terms of media coverage, football is significantly behind Australian Rules Football (AFL), Rugby League and Cricket. I asked Rose how she thinks the Matildas have managed to gain such passionate support:

Above: The Ladies League gang. Photo via: Rose Valente.

“AFL is our biggest competition here in Australia as it’s huge. Football is not the number one sport and the sport as a whole is constantly battling for air time within the media. The Matildas have been on the rise and their recent successes and lovable nature has won over Australia’s hearts. There is something very relatable with this Matildas team, they are down to earth and that resonates with the fans. They put everything on the pitch and they play for their shirts. Nike’s creation of the Spew 2.0 Matildas specific jersey for the 2019 France Women’s World Cup was a huge moment for women’s football in Australia. Ex-Matildas remember sewing their badges on, wearing men’s sizes and some not even receiving their own kits. Now powerhouse brand Nike have created an iconic remake of infamous Socceroos Spew (worn from 1990) for the women and well, it’s hard to explain what that means. When I wore my Matildas Spew 2.0 jersey for the first time, I felt so proud of this team and all the Ex-Matildas that brought us to this position.”

With so many members of The Matildas squad now playing their club football in England, I wondered how the FA Women’s Super League is thought of in Australia: “Australians have really been getting around the WSL this season – it probably helps that the W-League has had a nine month off season! Optus Sport securing the rights for the WSL in Australia is great as they have the FA Premier League rights too so it makes the women’s game much more accessible to the existing fans of English football who may not have explored WSL previously.”

With most of the Matildas now playing outside of Australia, I asked Rose what she felt this meant for the W-League in the short to medium term future: “I think it’s going to be an exciting challenge for the W-League. Many thought the league was doomed but many don’t head to State National Premier League (NPL) games throughout the NPL seasons and watch our local talent. From a national team perspective, our Matildas will only get better by playing alongside Miedema, Le Sommer, Pernille Harder etc. Our players heading to bigger leagues only means great things for Australian football however the W-League now needs to decide what type of competition they want to be.” 

Another issue that the W-League faces is that, with Australia co-hosting the next Women’s World Cup in 2023, a great deal is needed to grow recognition of the competition in the media and with the public. With only a handful of international players now playing in the competition, it makes life much harder. “There is a lot required to improve coverage and recognition,” said Rose, “but with the ever growing investment in women’s football in this country, we should hopefully make some changes in the near future.”

The appointment of Tony Gustavsson as Matildas head coach (see our piece on the recent Zoom conference with him that we joined in: https://impetus885775742.wordpress.com/2021/01/22/tony-gustavsson-ready-to-take-the-matildas-to-the-next-level/) was met with great positivity by Rose: “It’s great news! I can’t wait until the Matildas can properly start training together and getting some friendlies under their belts. It’s hard to gauge just yet as he hasn’t had a hands on opportunity as of yet but this is an extremely positive appointment and Australia is super excited!”

Photo via: Rose Valente.

The next three years is potentially really exciting for the Matildas with the Olympics, Asia Cup and World Cup. I asked Rose what she felt success in this period would realistically look like. “Win win win! Haha but realistically I think the Olympics and Asia Cup will be an insight into what our performance in 2023 will look like and I am hoping Tony (Gustavsson) and the coaching team can learn from any early exits prior to 2023. At the Football Writers Festival we attended recently, Football Australia CEO James Johnson said he wants to see the Matildas win the World Cup at home and I loved hearing that. They have the backing of absolutely everyone. These next two years will be hard work for all involved but I think with the correct investment from our federation, we can take it out because we have the players and we have the coaching staff.”

Whilst the current stars of the Matildas are becoming more familiar to British women’s football fans due to their presence in the FAWSL, I asked Rose who she feels the next generation of stars will be for the national side: “In my eyes, it is Remy Siemsen, Jada Mathyssen-Whyman (if she can stay fit) both currently at Sydney FC and Ellie Carpenter. While Ellie is a huge star and has been part of the Matildas set up for a while now, we need to remember she’s only twenty years old! She has a lot still to achieve and I think she will.” 

With an exciting home World Cup starting to appear over the horizon, I couldn’t help but thinking about the number of huge missed opportunities football has had in Australia over the past fifty years or so. Therefore, Rose and I ended our conversation by talking about what Football Australia need to do to make sure the 2023 World Cup doesn’t get added to that depressing catalogue: “Football in Australia needs a lot of work in general so this is a hard one. I honestly do not have the answer to this. I think there is a lot of work collectively behind the scenes that would need to be done however we need to remember James Johnson has only been part of Football Australia for under a year. He might just be the person we need to ensure from an administrative point of view we stay on track and don’t fall into a honeymoon period as we did after the Socceroos won the Asian Cup with the Socceroos (the men’s Australian national football team).

For more information on The Ladies League, check out their website at http://www.theladiesleague.com/ and find their podcast at all the usual podcast subscription sites.

Impetus’ coverage of Australian Women’s Football is supported by The Chicken Salt Co. They are offering every Impetus reader 5% off all orders of Chicken Salt from their website. Go to https://www.chickensalt.co.uk/?mate=impetus and place your order – 5% will automatically be taken off of the cost. The coupon code is impetus.

If you have any queries about your order, please email sales@chickensalt.co.uk