The Continental Tyres Cup is about to enter its’ fifth year and has had a make-over over the winter break, the reformatting sees the groups scrapped in favour of a straight-forward knock-out competition. The six lowest ranked teams from last season’s FAWSL face off in a preliminary round, with the three victors advancing to the round of 16.
Preliminary Round Draw
FAWSL newcomers Sheffield will host Durham, Millwall Lionesses will travel to Oxford United’s Northcourt, as Watford welcome London Bees to Berkhamsted. All three preliminary games identical to how each team started their 2016 season, the only difference being that Watford will be the home team in their tie.
All three matches are scheduled to take place on Saturday 7 May.
Round of 16
The round of 16 will see each WSL 2 team host a WSL 1 counterpart, and the draw is as follows;
Doncaster Belles - Sunderland
Yeovil Town - Notts County
Everton - Liverpool
Aston Villa - Man City
Reading - Arsenal
(Oxford or Millwall) - Birmingham City
(Sheffield or Durham) - Bristol City
(Watford or London Bees) - Chelsea
All first round matches are due to take place either on Saturday 2 or Sunday 3 July.
Merseyside derby the stand-out fixture
Yeovil Town will have a repeat of a group game from last season, when Notts County ran out 5-0 winners at Meadow Lane. WSL 1 newcomers, Reading will hope for better fortunes when they host the current holders, having narrowly lost their group game last season 2-1 and already having tasted defeat on the opening day of the season; Arsenal registering a comfortable 3-1 win.
Aston Villa will feel hard done by having drawn Manchester City in their knock-out game, with them already having to travel to Wheatsheaf Park this coming weekend in the FA Women's Cup quarter finals.
However, the stand-out fixture is Everton - Liverpool. There is no hope of a home advantage for the Toffees at the Select Security Stadium in Widnes, a ground they share with Liverpool, but fans who make the trip will be treated to a good old fashioned derby.
A new format
The new format was designed to cut down on dead-rubber games but still give WSL 2 teams a chance to test their mettle against higher ranked opposition, every team with a tough match but valuable experience to be had. With plenty of room for a cupset or two, this year’s Continental Tyres Cup is one not to be missed.
The draw took place at Manchester City’s home ground (CFA) on Monday night after the Citizen’s league match against current Conti Cup holders, Arsenal.
All times and dates are subject to change.