Chelsea boss Emma Hayes wanted to focus on the “festival of football” that has been organised for Women’s Football Weekend as her side take on Arsenal in the Women’s Super League.
With every WSL fixture broadcast live for the first time, and multiple derby matches, Hayes, speaking to ChelseaTV, was full of praise for “The work that’s gone on behind the scenes, especially of everybody in the Women’s FA.”
Chelsea have almost a full squad as they look to leapfrog Arsenal into second with victory at Meadow Park.
Fran Kirby is still not fully fit but otherwise, bar long-term absentees Drew Spence and Hannah Blundell, Hayes has a full squad to work with.
That will include captain Magdalena Eriksson who signed a new contract this week, tying her to the club until 2023.
Arsenal have a few more injury worries with Jordan Nobbs, Noelle Maritz, Steph Catley and Lisa Evans all expected to miss out, and Jennifer Beattie unlikely to be fit to start.
Joe Montemurro’s side will have the prolific Vivianne Miedema and Jill Roord, currently numbers one and two in the WSL goalscoring charts with 10 and six respectively, as they look to go top of the table.
Arsenal will hope the pair are on form as they look to bounce back from defeat last weekend at league-leaders Manchester United by overcoming Chelsea for the first time in over two years.
Midfielder Lia Walti told Arsenal.com that to do so “We need to be brave and we need to be confident. That’s easy to say but harder to show.”
Predicted Score – 1-2