Women's Super League pre-season so far: Friendlies commence across the division
(Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

Clubs in the Women's Super League and FA Women's Championship have now started to play pre-season friendlies after reaching step three of the three-step COVID-19 plan.

With clubs now back in training, there has only been a single positive test out a cumulative total of 1,996 between 2nd July and 1st August 2020.

Pre-season

As is often the case with pre-season in the women's game, information on the fixtures that have been played has been hard to come by. 

Teams across the top two flights and lower in the pyramid have resumed training recently and have begun to play friendlies, with matches taking place as early as last week.

Aston Villa

The first pre-season friendly that was confirmed to have been played between WSL sides was on the 2nd August, when Aston Villa hosted Arsenal at Villa Park.

The score of the match was not made public, although there have been reports on social media that the Gunners won the match 5-1.

New Villa captain Marissa Ewers led her side out for the game as new signings Caro Siems, Anita Asante, Ramona Petzelberger, Diana Silva and Stine Larsen also made their first appearances.

Arsenal

As well as the match against Villa, Arsenal played South London side Charlton Athletic in a friendly at home on the 8th of the month.

Similarly to the match against Aston Villa, little information about the game was made public except from the fact that it took place at the club's London Colney training ground.

The Gunners are now only a few weeks away from restarting their UEFA Women's Champions League campaign when they travel to Spain to face Paris Saint Germain in the quarter-finals on the 22nd of August.

Manchester United

Manchester United faced Scottish opposition on Sunday 8th August when they faced SWPL champions Glasgow City at Leigh Sports Village.

Little was made public by either club, although the final score of the match was a 4-0 win for the hosts, VAVEL UK understands.

Manchester City

Gareth Taylor's first match in the dugout at the City Football Academy took place on the 8th of August when Manchester City hosted Championship opposition in Coventry United.

It was a comfortable 5-0 win for the blues, with Gemma BonnerLauren HempGeorgia StanwayEllen White and Chloe Kelly on the scoresheet.

Karen Bardsley featured in her first game since the 2019 World Cup, missing last season through injury, while Esme Morgan made her first appearance since returning from a season-long loan at Everton.

Liverpool

Relegated from the WSL after the division was curtailed, Liverpool have made a number of transfers in the window so far and will be looking to find a way back into the top flight this season.

Liverpool faced Blackburn Rovers in a friendly on Sunday 8th August and won 4-1, according to The BBC's Emma Sanders, in a match that was played with 35 minutes each way.

Return to play

The FA announced the opening to weekends of fixtures in the Barclays FA Women's Super League and FA Women's Championship this week, with the first round to take place on the weekend of the 5th and 6th of September:

Matchday 1:

  • Arsenal v Reading
  • Aston Villa v Manchester City
  • Brighton & Hove Albion v Birmingham City
  • Bristol City v Everton
  • Manchester United v Chelsea
  • Tottenham Hotspur v West Ham United

Matchday 2:

  • Chelsea v Bristol City
  • Birmingham City v Manchester United
  • Everton v Tottenham Hotspur
  • Manchester City v Brighton & Hove Albion
  • Reading v Aston Villa
  • West Ham United v Arsenal
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