WOMEN'S WEEKLY

Posted on: Thu 02 May 2013

A second successive game away at Doncaster, this time in the Continental Cup, ended in a draw for the Chelsea Ladies, but assistant manager Paul Green is hopeful we can maintain our unbeaten run when we take on Everton this Sunday…

Share of the spoils
Having beaten the same opponents 4-0 a week earlier, our cup clash away at Doncaster Rovers Belles was always going to be a tricky fixture, and so it proved.

The home side opened the scoring after only four minutes through Jess Sigsworth, but the Blues equalised with our first attack of any note when Olina Vidarsdottir rose highest to head home powerfully from a corner.

Both teams had chances to win it during the second half, but Green felt a draw was probably a fair result.

'It had been a terrible week for Doncaster,' he tells the official Chelsea website. 'They lost 4-0 to us the previous week and then on top of that they received the news that they weren't going to be in Super League 1 in 2014, so they were out to prove a point.

'On the day, they were well deserving of at least a point. We were a little bit disappointed with our own performance but we've learnt some lessons moving forward and we're hoping for a reaction this coming weekend at Everton.'

Toffees test
Next up for Emma Hayes' side is a trip to take on Everton in the Continental Cup, our third away game in a row.

With all four teams in the group level on one point following the first round of matches, Green feels Sunday's clash represents a big opportunity.

'It's another Continental Cup game, and the group is as it started,' he explains. 'We've all played one game and they were both draws. It's an important game for us and we need to secure a win in order to finish in the top two in the group and qualify for the next stage.

'It seems as though we haven't played at home for a long time, but that's something we have to deal with. We just need to go to Everton and be professional. We know it will be a hard game, they're a good side with quality players, but we've got a strong squad. If we get the three points we have a good chance of qualifying.'

Strong start, positive future
Three games into the new FA WSL campaign and there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic.

A credible draw at Birmingham on the opening day was followed by the 4-0 win at Doncaster, while the 1-1 draw against the same opponents last weekend ensures an unbeaten start to the season.

The club were also handed a boost with the news that we have been chosen to play in the new-look FA WSL 1 from 2014 when there will be two leagues.

'It's been an encouraging start,' Green says. 'We drew with Birmingham, which was a good platform from which to build. They've qualified for the Champions League in the last two seasons so it was a good point for us.

'We built on that at Doncaster the following weekend, we're still unbeaten and we're pleased with how it's gone so far.

'The club are delighted to be chosen to be in the Super League 1 moving forward. A lot of hard work has gone on behind the scenes and we're pleased to be part of the top league.'

Chelsea Cup
On Sunday 19 May, Cobham will host the Chelsea Cup for girls in the Under-10 and Under-12 age groups.

The competition, which will see teams of four competing against each other, has been designed to build a lasting legacy for the female game, with the winning team taking home the trophy and receiving tickets to the UEFA Women's Champions League final.

Chelsea Ladies' first-team players will be on hand to offer their footballing expertise and advice alongside the club's Centre of Excellence coaches, and there will be plenty of information for aspiring footballers looking to join local clubs

Participants will also get the opportunity to have their picture taken with the Women's Champions League trophy and hear expert opinions on the female game.

Tickets available for showpiece game
There are still tickets remaining for the UEFA Women's Champions League final between holders Lyon and Wolfsburg. The game, which takes place at Stamford Bridge on Thursday 23 May, pits two of the finest teams in the ladies' game against each other, and promises to be an entertaining spectacle, so come along and show your support.

Tickets for the game, which are priced £10 for adults and £5 for juniors and seniors, are available from the Stamford Bridge box office, online or via the call centre on 0871 984 1905.