This weeks WFB is all about the title race.
Women’s National League Results – Round 25
Wexford Youths 5-2 Sligo Rovers
Goals: Kylie Murphy 31′ (1-0), Ciara Rossiter 41′ (2-0), Emma Doherty 43′ (2-1),
Kylie Murphy 59′ (3-1), Emma Doherty 61′ (3-2), Kylie Murphy 78′ (4-2),
Ciara Rossiter 80′ (5-2)
Cork City 0-5 Peamount United
Goals: Áine O’Gorman 38′ (0-1) / 71′ (0-2), Stephanie Roche 72′ (0-3),
Alannah McEvoy 81′ (0-4), Ellen Dolan 90′ (0-5)
DLR Waves 1-2 Shelbourne
Goals: Megan Smyth-Lynch 8′ (0-1), Jessie Stapleton 13′ (0-2), Kate Mooney 16′ (1-2)
Treaty United 0-7 Athlone Town
Goals: Scarlett Herron 14′ (0-7), Emily Corbet 27′ (0-2) / 28′ (0-3) / 36′ (0-4), 50′ (0-5),
Scarlett Herron 50′ (0-6), E. Corbet 80′ (0-7)
Bohemians 1-2 Galway
Goals: Katie Lovely 59′ (1-0), Ellerose O’Flaherty 74′ (1-1), Jenna Slattery 83′ (1-2)
Five goals for Emily Corbet puts her level with Áine O’Gorman at the top of the scoring charts on 19 goals. Stephanie Roche and Ellen Molloy are on 16, but Molloy will miss the rest of the season through injury, Kylie Murphy’s hat trick takes her up to 14 goals in the league.
Wexford made a big statement having lost back-to-back games to Athlone Town. Athlone themselves put up the biggest score of the weekend. Peamount deserved their win on the weekend but the 5-goal margin was harsh on Cork. Galway’s win over Bohs coupled with a defeat for Waves means the Tribeswomen are in pole position finish in the top half.
When we started these Women’s Football Blasts at the end of August we were debating whether it was a 2, 3, or 4 team race in the Women’s National League for the title. Now, heading into the penultimate round of games, it is still possible for any one of Wexford Youths, Shelbourne, Peamount United, and Athlone Town to win the league.
If teams finish level on points they will be separated on head to head record in the fixtures between the teams in question. This goes in the order of points gained in the games between the teams, then goal difference in the games, then goals scored in the games, then away goals scored in the games. If they are still level there will be a play-off, it could potentially be a three-way play-off.
Thanks to Ronan McCarthy for the graphics explaining the permutations. Follow @RonanTheGreek on Twitter.
Here’s how each side can still win the league, their current points tally, and who they play in their final two games.
R26 – Peamount United (A)
R27 – Shelbourne (H)
R26 – Sligo Rovers (H)
R27 – Wexford Youths (A)
R26 – Wexford Youths (H)
R27 – Galway (A)
R26 – Galway (H)
R27 – Bohemians (A)
The title race could be decided this weekend. If Wexford beat Peamount coupled with Sligo losing would mean Youths win the league. It is still possible that all four teams finish level on points.
A little while ago when Wexford closed the gap on Shelbourne, it seemed like the league was destined to be decided in the meeting between the two sides in the final round of the season. The picture has become more crowded since then, but the reality is if either side win their final two games they will be champions. It’s still in Wexford’s hands, but they have the toughest run-in, and any slip up hands over the initiative to the chasing pack.
This weekend’s meeting between Youths and Peas is a huge game, even relative to what the games between those sides usually are. If Peamount win, they will be ahead of Wexford on head to head. Wexford having home advantage over Shels on the final day could, in a round-about kind of way make Peamount favorites. Then again, Peas face Galway, who you may remember had a dramatic say in the title race last season coming from 2 goals down to beat Peamount 2-5 and send the trophy to Shels. Shelbourne could effectively be out of the title race this weekend if they lose to Sligo as they did in their previous meeting, or they could find themselves top of the table. We haven’t even factored in Athlone yet, who have the most complicated permutations and need a lot of favors, but still are in the mix until at least this Saturday.
It’ll be interesting to see how all of this impacts upon the season finale, the cup final. If either Shels or Athlone face a heartbreak or are involved in big celebrations on the final weekend, it will have an impact on the meeting between the two on November 6th.
There are so many turns the title race could take, or it could all end this Saturday. It’s been he most exciting title race we’ve seen in the WNL, and whoever claims the league title will have their work cut out in defending it next year alongside trying to qualify for the UCL.
Galway will guarantee a place in the top half with a win or two draws in their remaining games. DLR Waves have the easiest run-in on paper of the sides looking to finish 5th, but the Waves will need 6 points and to hope Galway lose both their games as their goal difference is far superior. Even if Bohs win their final games and Galway lose their there is 28 goals between the two sides, so it looks unlikely to say the least.
If Sligo get anything from their final games they will realistically be safe in 8th place, as Cork have a much worse goal difference.
For the teams outside the top 4, it’s all about finishing the year on good form and laying a solid foundation for next season.
Women’s National League Fixtures – Round 26 – Saturday 22nd October
Shelbourne vs Sligo Rovers
14:00 / Tolka Park
DLR Waves vs Treaty United
16:00 / UCD Bowl
Cork City vs Bohemians
17:00 / Turners Cross
Peamount United vs Wexford Youths
17:20 / PRL Park
Athlone Town vs Galway
19:00 / Athlone Town Stadium
Cailín in Green
Since we last brought you a Women’s Football Blast Ireland have qualified for a World Cup. Amber Barrett getting on to Denise O’Sullivan’s ball and scoring by doing what she called Big Toeing it is what made the difference.
Ireland were super in the game against a Scotland side ranked above them. It was a disciplined performance in which Ireland kept their shape well and controlled the midfield. Courtney Brosnan was Bonner-esque in saving a penalty early on, and the USA-born goalkeeper had a super game where she refused to let anything get past her.
Ireland have made the World Cup. It’s history. Forget outrage for the sake of outrage, anybody who doesn’t understand the magnitude of this achievement needs some serous education.
After the WNL season has come to a close we’ll have a special WFB where we look back at Ireland’s campaign.
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The Women’s Football Blast will be back next week with all the Irish women’s football you can handle.