WSL 2 - Week 11 Preview: The second tier returns after a lengthy break

The bottom two will face off as we return to action in England, while second welcome third in a big game in the promotion race.

WSL 2 - Week 11 Preview: The second tier returns after a lengthy break
(Photo: VAVEL UK/Jonny Walsh)

It's been a month since we had a proper round of WSL 2 games, with just two having been played in August thus far.

However, the action properly begins this weekend, starting with a Saturday evening fixture and four games on Sunday afternoon.

Promotion six-pointer to kick things off

Bristol City and Everton start us off tomorrow evening with a big game in the race for a spot in next year's WSL 1.

Bristol are two points off the pace in second, while the Toffees are five points behind the Vixens in third - albeit, with a game in hand.

The game takes place in the South West, and the hosts will head into the game as favourites based on their standing in the table, recent results, and home advantage.

Everton, meanwhile, will be hoping to avoid a third game without victory on a ground where only Sheffield FC have left with points in the WSL 2 this season - that in a goalless draw back in March.

Wildcats bidding to get back on track 

Sunday lunchtime then sees another promotion contender in action, Durham

Despite setting the pace early in the season, the North East outfit are now six points off of the top two, albeit with a game in hand over both of the teams currently occupying the promotion spots.

They will welcome an Oxford United side who are having an up and down season. They ended five games without a win by beating London Bees coming into the month off, showing that they do have top quality, but that they aren't always on the ball.

Durham were comfortable 5-1 winners in the reverse of this fixture and will be confident of dispatching the U's with relative ease once again on Sunday. 

The Wildcats have faced the three teams above them in their last four outings, and so this game will serve as a nice breather, though they cannot be complacent all the same.

Rollercoaster riders 

The clash at the Hive on Sunday afternoon will be one far too close to call. 

Both London Bees and Aston Villa are capable of beating anyone on their day, but they are also capable of the most disappointing of results when it isn't their day.

The Bees come into this game off the back of three straight defeats. A surprisingly poor 5-0 loss to Sheffield started things off, with a 3-0 defeat to Bristol and Oxford's 4-2 result following.

Villa, on the other hand, have been a little more consistent lately. They've only dropped points to the big four in recent outings, beating Millwall Lionesses and Watford in between.

Their hosts are capable of bouncing back brilliantly, especially after a month off to regroup, but the Villans are also capable of playing the role of the bad guy in the capital.

Sheffield out to cause another upset

Yeovil Town lead the way in WSL 2, but this weekend they visit Sheffield, who know how to upset the big guns.

They've taken four points off of both Bristol and Everton this season, and will be hoping to spoil the Glovers' good mood in their first meeting of the campaign on Sunday.

Their opponents have looked unbeatable this season at times, but they have also had their bad days. The 3-0 defeat to Everton still baffles many, and they have also been held to draws by both Millwall and Oxford in 2016.

However, the way they bounced back from that Everton defeat - with a 4-0 thrashing of Durham - was exceptional, and they then headed into the break with a relatively comfortable 2-0 win over Villa.

The game is theirs for the taking, but Sheffield will relish the underdog status and will be keen to show their home fans just what they can do, again.

Basement battle

Finally, the fourth game on Sunday afternoon sees the bottom two clash in a game that is all about pride.

With no relegation to the FA Women's Premier League in place just yet, finishing bottom means little. Of course, no one wants to finish there, but there are no consequences for doing so.

Millwall and Watford both have new managers, and both need new ideas injected into their seasons. The latter, this weekend's hosts, sit bottom of the standings with two wins, one draw and nine defeats to their name, while the Lionesses are only a point better off - having racked up five draws, yet only one win.

Both do have players who can produce real quality contributions though, and the affair will be an interesting one as spectators get a look at what these new coaches are going to change.

As for whether the three points will stay just outside of London, or be taken to the centre of the capital, is a call too close to make.