Arsenal Ladies will be hoping that their 5-1 away win at WSL2 champions Yeovil will kickstart their season.
Meanwhile there was disappointment for the Development Team as Chelsea Ladies won the League.
Pedro Losa selected the following starting 11 – Van Veenendaal; Scott, Patten, Williamson, Janssen; Nobbs, Wubben-Moy; O’Reilly, Van De Donk, Carter; Taylor in his classic 4-2-3-1 system. The subs used were McCabe, Humphrey and Kelly.
The unused subs were Moorhouse, Louise Quinn, Williams and Mead.
Goalscorers on the day were Taylor with a brace, including a penalty, an own goal from Clark, Carter, and O’Reilly (also a penalty).
Lucy Quinn scored for Yeovil.
Overall, it was a deserved and professional win against a team that won the WSL2 League last season and are currently finding their feet in the top division. A huge majority of their players have not played at this level and their budget is clearly the smallest by far in the League.
Arsenal Ladies are now in third place in the table with five points from three games, but the table is not a clear indication of the real form as some teams have played four games out of nine, while others have only managed two games so far.
Until the backlog of games is cleared, we won’t have a proper idea of the table, but league leaders Liverpool, alongside Chelsea and Manchester City seem to be the main contenders.
The next game will be Chelsea away on 17 May.
It is good to see that Anna Patten and Lotte Wubben-Moy are getting regular starts now and credit to Pedro Losa for showing confidence in them, even if it is due to injuries to senior players.
I certainly think Rianna Dean should also get a chance up front as a back-up to Jodie Taylor, especially as Beth Mead is on the bench every game but does not get on the pitch. Rianna has scored 27 goals in 16 appearance for the Development Team and a couple of goals for England u19 as well, but gets overlooked for a player on the mend…
Speaking of the Development Team, their league season has not been very good this year and it is no surprise that Chelsea Ladies won the Development League title.
Despite having a lot of quality players, external factors cost the team dearly this season with some under par performances and general unbalance in the team.
It has to be said that the youngsters were let down by the club for most of the season. The squad was short of players for three quarters of it with the players having to play games with injuries resulting, unsurprisingly, in longer injuries.
There were also many games where the club had only one or two outfield substitutes plus a back-up goalie who subsequently left for London Bees.
Clearly the Development Team was mismanaged and the late recruitment of three players and the promotion of three u16 players boosted numbers to attain a decent matchday squad size.
Kelly Smith taking over the team is also good news considering she has so much experience and the feedback from the training sessions sounds promising.
The Development Team have four League games left to play as well as the FA WSL Development League Cup final on 20 May at St Georges Park against Bristol.
League games are planned for 10th, 14th and 17th May with one game still not scheduled.
Let’s hope they can finish the season on a high before a number of players move to pastures new.
Arsenal 4 Liverpool 4
Fans were treated to a feast of goals last week, numerous defensive errors from both sides and plenty of quality attacking football at Barnet FC’s The Hive which will be the Arsenal Ladies home for the whole Spring Series as the Borehamwood FC pitch is being relaid.
Pedro Losa decided to make a few changes following a disappointng away draw with Sunderland and played in a 4-2-3-1 formation as follows – Van Veenendal; Scott Patten Quinn Janssen; Williamson, Wubben-Moy; Kelly, Nobbs, Carter; Van De Donk
Liverpool opened the scoring from a direct corner from Greenwood, Kelly equalised from close range, before Harding scored after a miss kicked clearance from Van Veenendaal hit her and Weir added a third away goal from a header.
3-1 down at half-time and things did not look good.
Thankfully, Carter decided to take control of the game and beat the right-back Hodson time and time again, scoring a brace in the process, while Nobbs scored what could have been the winner.
In the end Bonner scored an equaliser for Liverpool and the game ended up 4-4.
It was a great evening for the fans with a lot of goals, but a lot of work to do for the team to avoid conceding as many goals next time round.
Pedro Losa carries on giving games to Patten and Wubben-Moy, with Kelly also cementing her place in the squad while Mead is still not playing as she is recovering from injury but was named on the bench.
If she is not fit, why not put Dean on the bench who has had a very successful season with the development team and England u19 and who has more variety of skills than Mead actually.
Humphrey carries on being ignored and stays at the bottom of the pecking order and there are questions that need to be asked, like why Losa does not think she can do a job but still gave her a new contract.
That lack of trust is perplexing.
Overall, Pedro Losa should push the boat a bit more and play more youngsters as the Spring Series is there to test players in what is, essentially, a friendly competition.