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FA Women's Super League 1: How are all 11 teams shaping up?

Saturday 18th August 2018

In a bid to quell the French and German monopoly on the Champions League, the WSL has been reorganised to ensure those in the top tier – WSL 1 – have the necessary finances to compete in Europe. Not since Arsenal won the trophy in 2007 has a team outside of Germany or France won Europe’s crowning competition and the restructuring aims to not only increase the quality on the domestic front, but to pave the way for an eventual English win.

Chelsea and Manchester City both made it to the semi-finals last year, and while WSL champions Chelsea were brushed aside 5-1 on aggregate by Wolfsburg, City narrowly went down to eventual tournament winners Lyon, 1-0. The gulf is closing, but as Chelsea’s dismal defeat shows, there is work to be done to create competitive parity across England’s representatives.

And so, to this year’s WSL 1, which is now comprised of 11 teams. Conventional relegation and promotion was disbanded last season as the governing body introduced the new ‘licence scheme’ which essentially had to prove a club was financially strong, had a youth academy and was fully professional. It meant Doncaster Belles, who topped the division below WSL 1 failed to see a return on their work, but West Ham Ladies, who had competed in the third tier, were granted entry into the top flight. Sunderland lost their top-tier licence after failing to meet the requirements and Brighton, who finished second behind Doncaster, were promoted.

Chelsea won last year’s edition, but with growing interest and financial injection, this season is set to be the most competitive yet

Football News Now
Michael Jones

Football & political writer with a predictable love of everything retro. English Literature undergraduate at the University of Exeter, looking to pursue a career in sports journalism. For a collection of my work, visit. http://mikejonesmedia.wordpress.com

Follow me on twitter: @jonesmichael_97

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