Barclays WSL and WC Fixtures Announced for 2023-24 Season
The complete fixture lists for the upcoming 2023-24 season in the Barclays Women’s Super League (WSL) and Barclays Women’s Championship (WC) have been released, bringing excitement for women’s football fans.
Key Dates and Changes to the Upcoming Barclays WSL Schedule
The Barclays WSL 2023-24 season will kick off the weekend of September 9-10, 2023 and run through May 26, 2024.
Some notable changes this Barclays WSL season compared to past years include:
- Later start date in September to accommodate the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup hosted by Australia and New Zealand
- More weekend fixtures scheduled with fewer midweek matches
- Longer winter break aligning with the World Cup break, running from December 17, 2023 to January 14, 2024
These changes provide a nice balance of competitive matches while allowing England’s elite women’s players to focus on the World Cup and its expanded 32 team format this summer.
The later start and extended winter break will also help avoid the worst of the English weather conditions. With more teams investing stadium and infrastructure as part of the World Cup, the long-term forecast for women’s football is looking bright.
Let me know if you would like me to elaborate on any part of this section further before moving to the next section of the outline. I focused on setting the stage by highlighting the key dates and changes fans can expect for the upcoming Barclays WSL season.
Barclays Women’s Super League Background
For those less familiar with the top tier of English women’s football, here is some background on the Barclays Women’s Super League (WSL):
The WSL was established in 2010 as the premier women’s league in England. It currently consists of 12 clubs, including some of the biggest names in English football:
- Aston Villa
- Brighton & Hove Albion
- Leicester City
- Manchester City
- Manchester United
- Tottenham Hotspur
- West Ham United
In terms of past success, Chelsea and Arsenal have dominated, winning 6 of the last 7 WSL titles between them. Arsenal currently owns the most titles with 5 while Chelsea has won 4 times.
Last season saw a thrilling title race with Arsenal just piping Chelsea on the final day. Key WSL players like Arsenal’s Vivianne Miedema and Beth Mead and Chelsea’s Sam Kerr and Fran Kirby will be vying for the golden boot, assist, and player of the year awards.
The WSL continues to expand in popularity and coverage. All matches are broadcast nationally via Sky Sports and BBC with increasing viewership driven by the England women’s national team’s win at the 2022 UEFA European Championship last summer.
Full Barclays WSL Fixture List and Key Matchups
Taking a deeper look at the just announced Barclays WSL 2023-24 schedule, fans can start getting excited at some of the early headline clashes:
- Chelsea vs Manchester United
- Arsenal vs Brighton
- Aston Villa vs Manchester City
- Chelsea vs Manchester City (Oct 15)
- Brighton vs Arsenal (Oct 15)
- Manchester United vs Arsenal (Nov 19)
- Arsenal vs Chelsea (Dec 3)
- Manchester City vs Manchester United (Dec 11)
- Chelsea vs Arsenal (Mar 11)
- Manchester United vs Liverpool (Mar 25)
- Arsenal vs Manchester United (April 15)
- Manchester City vs Chelsea (April 22)
And the season closes with Championship Sunday on May 28 which could hopefully provide more drama like last campaign!
From clash of champions between Arsenal and Chelsea, to Manchester derbies pitting United against City, the WSL schedule is filled with critical six-pointers between the league’s elite clubs in 2023-24.
Impacts and Changes Due to Hosting 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup
With the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup coming to Australia and New Zealand this summer, the effects will be felt in the scheduling of domestic leagues like the WSL.
Many of the stadiums and facilities that host Barclays WSL matches will also host World Cup matches. These include:
- Brighton & Hove Community Stadium
- Brentford Community Stadium
- Manchester City Academy Stadium
- Old Trafford
- Stadium MK
The extended WSL winter break from December 17, 2023 to January 14, 2024 will allow players to focus on the World Cup group stage matches before returning to their clubs.
The tournament is expanding to 32 teams for the first time, underscoring the growth of women’s football globally. With the boost in attention and infrastructure investment driven from hosting the World Cup, the long-term outlook for the WSL and women’s football in England remains very promising.
Tournament Schedule for The Women’s Championship (WC)
Alongside the Barclays Women’s Super League, the FA Women’s Championship (WC) represents the second-tier of women’s football in England.
While perhaps lacking the star power of the WSL, the WC still delivers competitive and dramatic matches across its 12 clubs:
- Blackburn Rovers
- Charlton Athletic
- Crystal Palace
- London City Lionesses
- Sheffield United
- Coventry United
- Bristol City
The FA Women’s Championship will also kick off on the weekend of August 12-13, 2023 and conclude in Spring 2024, running concurrently with the WSL schedule.
The winter break for the WC will align with the WSL’s break around the World Cup, pausing from December 17, 2023 to January 14, 2024.
Many players feature in both leagues with WSL clubs able to loan younger talents to Championship sides for more playing time, making it an important developmental stepping stone.
Where to Watch WSL and Women’s Championship Matches
With the growth and investment in women’s football, it’s becoming easier than ever for fans to tune into the action in England’s top tiers:
Barclays Women’s Super League
- TV Broadcasts: All WSL matches are broadcast live nationally on subscription service Sky Sports and some on free-to-air BBC channels
- Streaming: The FA Player app and the Sky Go app provide streaming access to all WSL matches
- Attend Live: Most Barclays WSL clubs play in large stadiums like the Emirates, Stamford Bridge, Old Trafford and the Etihad, making attending top quality women’s football very accessible for fans in England
The Women’s Championship
- Streaming: The FA Player provides free streams to many Women’s Championship fixtures
- Attend Live: Tickets are affordably priced for these second division matches, great for family attendance
With increasingly accessible broadcasts via Sky Sports, BBC, and The FA Player, Barclays WSL and Women’s Championship matches have never been easier to take in.
And as highlighted in the exciting upcoming fixtures, the tightened title race forecasted in the WSL, and expanded World Cup, season 2023-24 promises to be another memorable one for women’s football in England!
Barclays WSL and WC Fixtures Announced for 2023-24
Women’s Super League winners
The defending Women’s Super League champions are Arsenal, who dramatically clinched the 2022 title on the final day ahead of rivals Chelsea. It was Arsenal’s 5th title, establishing them as the competition’s most decorated club since the WSL launched in 2010. Chelsea has also enjoyed success with 4 titles, while Manchester City and Liverpool have each lifted the trophy once. Arsenal now looks to defend their crown in the upcoming 2023-24 campaign.
Women’s Super League teams
The Barclays Women’s Super League currently consists of 12 teams, including European giants Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City, Manchester United, and Liverpool. Other competitive clubs are Brighton & Hove Albion, Reading, Tottenham Hotspur, Leicester City, Everton, Aston Villa, and West Ham United. All 12 teams will be vying for glory when the new 2023-24 WSL season kicks off in September.
Women’s Super League fixtures
The opening weekend fixtures for the 2023-24 Women’s Super League were recently announced. Key matches include champions Arsenal hosting Brighton, while Manchester United will travel to Chelsea. The schedule consists of 22 total rounds concluding in May 2024, with a winter break from mid-December to mid-January. Fans can expect exciting derbies between Arsenal and Spurs, the Manchester rivalry, and critical clashes between the title favourites.
Women’s Super League matches
As interest in women’s football accelerates, WSL match attendance reached new highs during the 2021-22 season with several sell-out crowds over 25,000. This enthusiasm is expected to continue growing in 2023-24 on the back of England’s victorious Euro 2022 campaign. Many matches take place in large Premier League grounds, while others sell-out smaller stadiums demonstrating the rising popularity.
Women’s Super League table
The final 2022-23 WSL table saw a dramatic finish, with Arsenal edging Chelsea on goal difference to win their 5th title. Chelsea had led the table for much of the season before a late collapse. Manchester United and Manchester City claimed the final two Champions League places, while Liverpool beat out West Ham for the last European slot. At the bottom, Birmingham City, Leicester City, and Reading were relegated to the Championship.
Women’s Super League stats
Some noteworthy Women’s Super League statistics from the record-breaking 2022 season include:
- Most Goals: Sam Kerr (Chelsea) – 20
- Most Assists: Fran Kirby (Chelsea) – 10
- Most Clean Sheets: Man United – 12
Crowd attendance and TV viewing figures also reached new highs following England’s Euro 2022 success. The NWSL reaching a landmark pay deal has raised expectations further for the WSL ahead of 2023-24.
Women’s Super League players
The world-class talent on display makes the WSL extremely compelling. Household names like Vivianne Miedema, Sam Kerr, Beth Mead, Lauren Hemp, Leah Williamson, and Fran Kirby will again lead their clubs. Younger stars like Lauren James, Alessia Russo, and Maya Le Tissier continue to emerge. And England’s Euro winning heroes now return to their domestic teams aiming for more silverware. With a growing spotlight, WSL players have become bonafide stars leading their sport into an exciting era.
With the full fixture list for the Barclays Women’s Super League and Women’s Championship announced, fans can start looking ahead to the 2023-24 season.
An action-packed Barclays WSL schedule sees heated clashes between rivals Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester United, Manchester City, and Liverpool. And with the league looking tighter than ever, the title race is expected to provide plenty of dramatic moments.
The effects of the 2023 Women’s World Cup will provide added wrinkles with an extended winter break and the benefits of infrastructure investments set to elevate the quality and competitiveness of England’s top-flight even higher.
And for fans, more accessibility via broadcast, streaming, and live attendance allows the Barclays Women’s Super League to reach its highest ever audience.
After England’s Euro 2022 win propelled momentum, women’s football looks to continue its upwards trajectory.
Stadiums will fill, viewership will climb, and stars of the Barclays WSL will shine brighter than ever in what looks to be the most hotly anticipated season in league history.
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