Tag Archives: Fara Williams

New TV series with the Ultimate Goal of inspiring Next female footballers

The UK and Ireland sports broadcaster, BT Sport is set to air a six-part reality competition from the 3rd November called ‘Ultimate Goal.’

The ‘Ultimate Goal’ will capture 28 women training and competing for the chance to become the next stars of women’s football. It will also give them the chance to showcase their skills at the England national teams St.George’s Park training facility.

The former Chelsea, Juventus and England player, Eniola Aluko, will present the show and will head up a team of football legends, who will act as mentors for these players throughout the series. 

When asked what makes a top professional footballer, Aluko said:

“I think a successful footballer has to have a work ethic that is relentless through success and failure.” 

Among the mentors Aluko will head up is set to be former England national team goalkeeper, Rachel Brown Finnis and twins Rosie and Mollie Kmita, formally of West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur. 

When asked about the show, Brown Finnis said:

“To provide girls with the opportunity of playing in front of managers, coaches, scouts.  It’s just a priceless opportunity.” 

While during the series the participants will benefit from master classes delivered by the likes of: Rio Ferdinand, Freddie Ljungberg, Peter Crouch, Robin Van Persie, Fara Williams, Faye White and Jill Scott.  

Ahead of the start of the series, former Arsenal, Manchester United and Netherlands striker, Van Persie said:

“Football is a game of mistakes.  It does not matter if you miss as long as you give your maximum you will eventually succeed. ” 

Of the 28 players participating in the show, 14 will be chosen to participate in a trial match against a leading women’s side where scouts from leading teams such as: Arsenal, Chelsea, Barcelona and Champions League holders Lyon will be in attendance. 

Chief operating officer of BT Sport, Jamie Hindhaugh, meanwhile, added:

“Ultimate goal builds on BT’s commitment, as part of its long term partnerships with each of the four UK ‘Home Nations’ Football Associations, to inspire a new generation of girls and women to participate in football.”

Viewers certainly will get to know the participants and get taken on compelling journeys with them as well as learn about how they have had to overcome issues such as discrimination and equality.       

The first episode in the UK is due to air on Tuesday 3rdNovember at 10:30pm and will air every Tuesday over a six-week period on BT Sport 3. 

WSL RoundUp Week Three: Everton maintain unbeaten start

The latest round of Women Super League matches saw Everton maintain their impressive start to the WSL by beating newly promoted Aston Villa 6-0 at the Walsall’s Bescot Stadium. 

Indeed, this victory marked a brilliant week for Willie Kirk’s side, which also secured their spot in the FA Cup final by overcoming League Champions Chelsea and two-time cup winners Birmingham City to set up an encounter with Gareth Taylor’s Manchester City. 

The Australian international Hayley Raso opened the scoring for the Toffees in the 20thminute, before quickly making it two by pouncing on a goalkeeping error from Villa keeper Lisa Weiss.

Things went from bad to worse for Gemma Davies’ team as Claire Emslie added a third for the Merseyside club with a curling 20 yard effort before Valerie Gauvin finished off a fine counter attacking move for Everton’s fourth, five minutes before half time. 

The second half saw Chantelle Boye-Hlorkah’s attempted cross sail in and Emslie rounded off the scoring with her second of the game and the Toffee’s sixth. 

Champions Chelsea return to winning ways

Emma Hayes’ West London side secured a hard fought 1-0 at Birmingham thanks to England international Fran Kirby.  

Kirby headed in Scotland’s Erin Cuthbert’s free kick after eight minutes to ensure Chelsea maintained their unbeaten start in the league. 

Beth England should have added a second for the Blues but it was controversially ruled out for offside. 

In Carla Ward’s third match in charge of Birmingham, they did almost manage to snatch a point late on as Claudia Walker headed Harriet Scott’s cross-just wide. 

Ward, however, is still waiting for her first WSL victory in charge of her new team. 

Chloe Kelly stars for Manchester City

This weekend, meanwhile, also proved a good weekend for former Everton striker Chloe Kelly

Kelly helped her new club, Manchester City, to a 4-1 win over Tottenham Hotspur by scoring two goals.  The first was a terrific effort from outside the area and the second was from the penalty spot.

American international Sam Mewis, also capped off an impressive week for her new club with her second goal in the space of four days and England striker Ellen White headed in City’s fourth.  

Anna Filbey scored a late consolation for the North London based club, who were still without marque signing Alex Morgan as she still is working her way up to match sharpness, having not played a competitive game for over a year. 

The Gunners go top of the WSL

Arsenal recovered from conceding an early goal to Bristol City to secure a 3-1 win.   

Jordan Nobbs equalised for Joe Montemurro’s team just before half-time, before Caitlin Foord made it two early in the second half, to ensure that she maintained her impressive early season form.

Dutch striker Vivianne Miedema sealed the victory for the Gunners late on after running onto Beth Mead’s through ball before using the outside of her foot to guide the ball past Sophie Baggaley in the Bristol City goal. 

Alessia Russo scores on Manchester United debut

England striker Alessia Russo marked her first start for Casey Stoney’s United with a terrific solo goal as the Red Devils secured a 3-0 win over Hope Powell’s Brighton.  

The Seagulls never looked liked getting anything from this one as Ellie Toone’s early penalty helped set United up to clinch a second consecutive victory in the Women Super League. 

The Royals edge past the Hammers at Dagenham

Elsewhere, a goal from Lauren Bruton gave Reading a 1-0 victory at West Ham.

Bruton was able to convert Natasha Harding’s cross in the 26thminute of the game, but the result was however marred by an injury to their influential midfielder, Fara Williams.

West Ham, meanwhile, in the second half missed a terrific chance to secure a share of the spoils as Royals’ keeper, Grace Moloney, saved Kenza Dali’s penalty.  

What next?

The fourth round of matches features an intriguing encounter as Champions Chelsea host last season’s runners-up Manchester City, while league leaders Arsenal travel to Brighton. 

Everton will look to maintain their unbeaten start as they host West Ham United and Casey Stoney’s Manchester United travel to face Tottenham Hotspur. 

Elsewhere, newly promoted Aston Villa are away at Bristol City and Reading host Carla Ward’s Birmingham City.  

Saturday 10thOctober

Tottenham Hotspur vs Manchester United (12:30pm)

Sunday 11thOctober

Brighton and Hove Albion vs Arsenal (12:30pm)

Everton vs West Ham United (1pm)

Bristol City vs Aston Villa (2pm)

Reading vs Birmingham City (2pm)

Chelsea vs Manchester City (2:30pm)

WSL Update: Nick Cushing signs off with a win against Arsenal

Departing Manchester City manger Nick Cushing ended his six-year stint with the club this past weekend by completing a 2-1 win over Arsenal.

Cushing was presented with an achievement award before the game by current club captain Steph Houghton.

During Cushing’s time with the club he led them to one league title, two Women’s FA Cups and three Women’s League Cup’s.

In form striker Pauline Bremer scored the opener for City just before half time from close range. Lauren Hemp doubled their advantage with a looping header.

Danielle Van de Donk pulled a goal back for the Gunners but it was not enough to deny Cushing a dream send off.

The win leaves City a point ahead of closest challengers Chelsea, however the Citizens have played a game more than Emma Hayes’ side.

Chelsea maintained their impressive form by scoring eight goals past West Ham United in an 8-0 win over Matt Beard’s team.

Both Maren Mjelde and Beth England scored twice, while further goals from Scottish winger Erin Cuthbert, Sophie Ingle and substitutes Ramona Bachmann and Emily Murphy completed the scoring.

Casey Stoney’s Manchester United were denied all three points at Adams Park thanks to a Fara Williams penalty, which earned Reading a 1-1 draw with the Red Devils. Both sides remain fourth and sixth respectively in the WSL.

Elsewhere Brighton secured a crucial home win against Everton thanks to a goal from Aileen Whelan, who found the bottom right hand corner of the net against her former club.

This win means that the Seagulls are now six points clear of the relegation zone and are in ninth place.

The other two WSL matches, Liverpool versus Birmingham City and Tottenham Hotspur against Bristol City suffered postponements due to waterlogged pitches.

A Look ahead to this weekend’s fixtures

Sunday 9 February

Everton vs Liverpool (Kick-off 2pm)

Goodison Park is set to host its first Women Super League Merseyside Derby. The previous league meeting between the sides took place at Anfield for the first time last November where Everton secured a 1-0 win.

The Toffee’s recent home form in all competitions has been strong, as they have won three of their last five matches.

Everton’s Merseyside rivals meanwhile have also witnessed an upsurge in form having only lost one of their last five matches.  Although the Reds match with Birmingham City was postponed last weekend.

In terms of the head to head meetings both sides have now won two matches apiece, however the Toffees have won two of their last three encounters with their fierce rivals.

Prediction 1-1 draw

We are anticipating a closely fought encounter between these two sides, predicting that the spoils will be shared on this occasion. 

Arsenal vs Tottenham Hotspur (2pm)

The WSL fixture list has provided another famous English derby this weekend.

Joe Montemurro’s Arsenal side have endured a tricky time of it as of late, having lost to both their title rivals consecutively in the league.

Their North London rivals however are also going through a difficult spell, particularly away from home where they have lost four of their last five matches.

Prediction: Arsenal 2-0 win

Predicting the Gunners to get back to winning ways.

Birmingham City vs Brighton & Hove Albion (2pm)

Only one place separates these teams in the table ahead of this weekends matches.

Hope Powell’s Brighton got a big win against Everton last time out, though they are still to record a victory away from home in the WSL this season.

Birmingham meanwhile is also struggling for results, having lost four of their last five games.  Their last league win came against fellow strugglers Bristol City at the start of December.

The Seagulls have got a slight edge over their relegation rivals in terms of head-to head encounters having won two of their three meetings.

Prediction: Birmingham 2-1 win

We think due to the fact the pressure is on Birmingham to win this weekend that they will get the result they need.

Bristol City vs Reading (3pm)

This is a crucial game for the league’s bottom side, with two of their relegation rivals playing each other this weekend.

Bristol City are still to win a home league game in this campaign and they have also lost their last five matches in all competitions so the signs do not look good for Tanya Oxtoby’s team.

Reading also have enjoyed a lot of success against the West Midlands club having won five and drawn just once against them in the league.

Prediction: Reading 3-1 win

We believe that all signs seem to point to a relatively comfortable Reading victory.

West Ham United vs Manchester City (3pm)

The WSL leaders Manchester City begin life without Nick Cushing with a trip to East London.

Alan Mahon, previously the assistant manager, is taking interim charge until the end of the season and he will be determined to get off to a good start.

West Ham meanwhile are coming off the back of a heavy 8-0 defeat to City’s title rivals Chelsea, so they will be coming into this one looking to avoid further humiliation.

The reverse fixture between these sides resulted in 5-0 for Manchester City so it promises to be a tough afternoon for the Hammers.

Prediction: Manchester City 3-0 win

Manchester City has won all three previous encounters with West Ham in the league and we believe they will get the three points in this one to get Mahon off to a winning start.

Manchester United vs Chelsea (4:30pm) – BT Sport

The final game of the weekend promises to be an intriguing one.  Both of these teams met in the Continental Tyres Cup Semi-Final just a week ago with Chelsea coming out 1-0 winners on that occasion, setting up an all London final with Arsenal next month.

In the league’s reverse fixture the Blues also ran out 1-0 winners so all signs seem to point to another close encounter.

Casey Stoney’s side has also only lost twice in the league at home this season.

Prediction Chelsea 2-1 win

We believe this will be another close game with the title favourites Chelsea just coming away with the win.