New year, new manager, new ambitions. Can Arsenal Women return to being successful after a cup drought and six years without title success?
Arsenal can certainly win silverware in 2018. They’re two wins away from winning the Continental Tyres Cup back, if they can beat Reading away and then the winner of the other semi-final between Chelsea and Manchester City.
The second trophy available is the FA Women’s Cup. Arsenal will enter the competition in Round 4. The draw will take place on Monday, January 8. The FA Women’s Cup dates are as follows:
- Fourth Round Sunday 4 February 2018
- Fifth Round Sunday 18 February 2018
- Quarter Final Sunday 18 March 2018
- Semi-Finals Sunday 15 April 2018
- The Final Saturday 5 May 2018
The third ‘trophy’ available is the qualification for the Champions League. The next WSL game on Sunday, January 7 will be crucial as a result. Arsenal are currently trailing Chelsea by three points and a huge goal difference, all before they travel to Kingsmeadow Stadium to face the Blues.
A win would see them level on points with their London rival and well on course to achieve qualification for the first time since 2012. A draw would make it hard to compete for that second place.
Defeat would be catastrophic, as Chelsea would open a six-point gap against the Gunners, and it would be simply unrealistic to expect to make up the deficit unless there was a giant collapse from Emma Hayes’ side.
The final available trophy is the WSL title, and the prospects are non-existent at the moment. Arsenal are five points behind Manchester City, who boast a 100% record so far. They need to slip up twice while Arsenal win every game to have a small shot at the crown.
I believe the Gunners can pick up some silverware this season, but it’s more likely to be the domestic cups rather than the league.