Despite Manchester City’s best efforts in trying to gift us a victory at long last on their own turf by getting two players sent off, Chelsea were only able to leave Joie Stadium with a single point in a 1-1 draw.
That is not a bad result given the difficulty of the trip and how wobbly we often looked — last season City went unbeaten at home, dropping only four points — but it is disappointing given the circumstances of the game itself.
But that was only the second match of 22 in the Women’s Super League. We have every chance to bounce back and return to business as usual with three points on offer against West Ham in our first match at Kingsmeadow this season.
Date / Time: Saturday, October 13, 17.30 BST; 12:30pm EDT; 10pm IST
Venue: Kingsmeadow, Kingston Upon Thames, UK
Referee: Stacey Pearson
Forecast: Sunny and light winds
On TV: Sky Sports (UK); none (USA); elsewhere
Streaming: SKY GO (UK); Paramount+ (USA)
Chelsea team news: Last weekend’s performance was far from ideal. Manager Emma Hayes gave starts to Ashley Lawrence, Jessie Fleming and Mia Fishel, and unfortunately the trio didn’t play up to standards.
Once Sam Kerr was introduced in place of Fishel, the attack started flowing much better. That alone should be enough reason to believe that Kerr will be back in the starting lineup today — though Fishel won’t be available to play anway. Guro Reiten, who got the equaliser against City in stoppage time, won’t be in the squad either. Hayes did not give any specific reasons for the duo’s absence.
West Ham team news: The Hammers’ biggest move in the summer was to bring in Rehanne Skinner as their new head coach after firing Paul Konchesky at the end of last season. The former Spurs boss is the club’s first ever female manager.
West Ham began the season with a 2-0 loss to Manchester City, at home. They bounced back against Brighton last weekend, winning 2-0 away with goals from Kirsty Smith and new signing Riko Ueki.
In 14 matches against Chelsea, the Hammers’ best result has been a 1-1 draw. If they’re smart they’ll try using the weight of our invincibility against us, as Chelsea will likely feel the need to open up and grab as many goals as possible from the start.
Previously: Chelsea played West Ham, away, in the third-to-last WSL match last season, needing three points to keep ahead of Manchester United in the table. And so we did, and in stome style, with goals from Niamh Charles, Pernille Harder, Sophie Ingle, and Erin Cuthbert in a 4-0 win.