- Hoffenheim spring a surprise in Germany
- Head-to-head race in the WSL
- Final line-up confirmed in Australia
With the international friendly tournaments now over and the winners crowned, this is the perfect time to take a look at women’s leagues around the world. Who has impressed in recent weeks? Who has pulled off a shock and who has the domestic title firmly in their sights? FIFA.com rounds up all the action.
France: Championship number 14 for Lyon?
It comes as no surprise to see that Olympique Lyon are once again on track to defend their title this season, having been champions every year since 2006/07. Coach Jean-Luc Vasseur’s side are unbeaten in first place with 44 points from 16 games, only failing to take all three points from Girondins Bordeaux and Dijon. As in the two previous seasons, Paris Saint-Germain are currently in second place. The top-of-the-table clash between the two rivals on Matchday 17 will show whether Lyon can pull further away or whether PSG will draw level.
The same two clubs are also still in the hunt for the cup. Lyon will face Guingamp in the last four while PSG take on Bordeaux. The club from France’s capital city last won the competition in 2018. Their opponents in the final that year? Olympique Lyon.
Olympique Lyon's women's team was founded in 2004. Since then, the team has won the French league 13 times, the cup eight times and the UEFA Women's Champions League six times. In addition, 15 players from the current squad took part in the FIFA Women's World Cup France 2019™ with the national teams from their respective home countries.
England: Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal all in the race for the title
The excitement continues in the FA Women’s Super League. Three teams are currently locked in a head-to-head race, with Manchester City on 40 points, Chelsea on 39 and reigning champions Arsenal on 36. The league’s top two sides, Manchester City and Chelsea, attracted particular attention when they faced each other in February, playing out a thrilling 3-3 draw that left the title race wide open. Georgia Stanway’s 60th minute strike not only gave City a 2-1 lead but it was also the 2,000th goal in WSL history.
Did you know?
Chelsea have already won the first trophy on offer this season in England. Emma Hayes’ side beat Arsenal 2-1 in the final of the WSL Cup, with Bethany England scoring both of her team’s goals in the 9th and 92nd minutes.
Germany: Hoffenheim spring a surprise as Wolfsburg pull away
Bayern Munich and Wolfsburg have been permanently camped out at the top of the Bundesliga table in recent years. To be precise, no team other than Bayern or Wolfsburg has lifted the trophy since 2013. Yet this season Hoffenheim have become new challengers to the usual suspects in the race for the top few places. Coach Jurgen Ehrmann’s side are currently just a point behind their Munich-based rivals and dreaming of a Champions League spot.
Hoffenheim had more points on the board by this year's winter break than they managed in the whole of last season. However, two of Hoffenheim’s last three defeats have come at the hands of defending champions Wolfsburg – the only side they haven’t yet managed to win any points from this term. That is reflected in the latest standings, with the She-Wolves opening up a clear lead at the top of the table.
Did you know?
Wolfsburg’s Pernille Harder is currently the Bundesliga’s leading goalscorer with 22 goals to her name. The UEFA Women’s Player of the Year 2018 made her 100th competitive appearance for the She-Wolves against Hoffenheim on Matchday 14, having scored an incredible 92 goals during that time.
Australia: And then there were two
In Australia, the W-League season is entering the final straight. The two finalists who will battle it out for the domestic title have been confirmed as Sydney FC and Melbourne City. Sydney secured a narrow 1-0 win over Melbourne Victory in the semi-finals thanks to a goal from Veronica Latsko, while Melbourne City recorded a resounding 5-1 triumph over Western Sydney Wanderers in the second last-four encounter. Claire Emslie, Kyah Simon, twice, and Rebekah Stott found the target for City before Courtney Nevin netted an own goal for Melbourne’s fifth. The winner of the final will become the first Westfield W-League club to lift the championship trophy four times.
Melbourne City were particularly impressive on their way to the last four, racking up an impressive 11-point advantage over local rivals Melbourne Victory in their 12 regular season games (11 wins, one draw) to set a new record for the biggest lead at the top of the table. Defending champions Sydney ended the regular season in third place with 22 points, while Western Sydney Wanderers finished fourth with the same number of points but with an inferior goal difference.
- The new seasons in USA, Sweden, Denmark and Norway have not yet started.
- In Switzerland, Servette FC Chenois Feminin have a four-point lead in first place and are fending off FC Zurich, who have won the previous two championships and nine overall. The two teams will also face each other in the semi-finals of the Swiss Cup.
- The story is a familiar one in Spain, where Barcelona and Atletico Madrid are in a two-horse race, just as they have been in previous seasons.
- In the land of the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 runners-up, PSV Eindhoven have a seven-point advantage over second-placed Ajax.