Chelsea FC Women go head-to-head with Arsenal tonight as we begin our defence of the Continental League Cup, and here we preview tonight’s London derby…
When and where?
The Blues will welcome London neighbours Arsenal to Kingsmeadow for what is expected to be an entertaining group stage clash in Group B. The fixture kicks off at 7pm.
How to follow
Please note, tonight’s game is not being streamed live however, Chelsea fans can keep up to date with the game via our social media channels. There will be live commentary on our Twitter page, regular updates on Facebook and Instagram. All you need to do is search ‘ChelseaFCW' on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to keep up to date!
Due to government guidelines regarding Covid-19, this game is being played behind closed doors and the whole of Kingsmeadow will be closed to the public. Therefore, we strongly advise fans not to travel to the stadium or congregate in the surrounding areas.
We understand the frustration for supporters who usually attend matchdays and we look forward to welcoming you back to Kingsmeadow when it is safe to do so.
The Blues’ domestic campaign has resulted in two victories and one draw so far, with the latest result being a 1-0 win away to Birmingham City, courtesy of a Fran Kirby header. The forward gave us an early lead when she leaped beyond her marker and met Erin Cuthbert’s pin-point free-kick to direct home. Chelsea’s lead could have been extended on a number of occasions if only our finishing was up to the usual high standards set by the players. Such opportunities include a hefty effort from Guro Reiten which blasted off the crossbar, a Bethany England goal being disallowed through an incorrect offside call and then she was denied by a goal-line clearance.
Arsenal have had a perfect start to their league campaign having won all three of their matches. They were last in action on Sunday against Bristol City where they defeated the West Country side 3-1. Bristol scored the opener when Arsenal’s Leah Williamson lost possession and gave Abi Harrison a free run at goal to fire into the bottom corner. Jordan Nobbs evened the scoring with a first-time strike into the top corner and the Gunners’ lead was doubled after the restart when Caitlin Foord latched onto an inviting delivery from Nobbs to find the far corner with a glancing finish. Vivianne Miedema then went on to make it three in the closing stages, racing behind Bristol’s defence to poke the ball into the far corner.
Chelsea v Arsenal recent head-to-head record
Chelsea v Arsenal is one of the most frequent fixtures within women’s top-flight football. The two teams have locked horns over 25 times, with our last meet being in last year’s Continental League Cup final at Nottingham Forest’s City Ground, with the Blues running out 2-1 victors to clinch the trophy.
The Blues registered two league victories against the Gunners last season, beating them 2-1 at home and 4-1 away.
The first match of the season took place at Kingsmeadow last October. Despite our dominance Arsenal found the net first through Danielle Van de Donk Our hard work paid off in the second half and England got us back in the game. Maria Thorisdottir and Ramona Bachmann, who both came on in the later stages of the match, proved to be super substitutes when Bachmann teed up her Norwegian team-mate who slammed a rocket of a shot into the top corner.
The away fixture which took place at the end of January was even more impressive against our London rivals. England got us underway inside 10 minutes with a wonderful curling effort and three minutes later Kerr opened her Chelsea account with a powerful headed effort. Sophie Ingle made it three with an incredible volley and Reiten capped off our ruthless performance with a towering header in the second half.
Conti Cup fixtures
Emma Hayes’ squad are in Group B along with along with Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur and Championship side London City Lionesses.
Our next group fixture is due to be on the evening of Wednesday 4 November against Tottenham Hotspur and this also has a 7pm kick-off under the Kingsmeadow lights.
The Blues then travel east to face London City Lionesses for our final group stage match and this encounter will be on Wednesday 18 November with a 7.30pm kick-off.
The format of the competition has been adjusted slightly this year, with the tournament increased from four groups to six. Four teams will compete in five of the groups and three in the other. The six teams finishing top of their group will progress to the quarter-final stage alongside the two best runners-up.
Next up at Kingsmeadow
Another big game follows after tonight when we host Manchester City in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League on Sunday. The mouth-watering encounter is live on BT Sport at 2.30pm.