Matildas Abroad Preview: Chelsea take on Arsenal in huge WSL clash; Wave take on Gotham in NWSL Challenge Cup Final

Arsenal’s CommBank Matildas will battle it out with Chelsea for a potential spot at the top of the ladder on Saturday morning. Elsewhere, the Swedish Cup continues, and the San Diego Wave get their season underway with the chance to pick up silverware in the NWSL Challenge Cup Final.

Read our preview of all of the action below.

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The FA WSL gets underway with a bang, with Chelsea hosting Arsenal on Saturday, 6am AEDT. Chelsea are currently top of the ladder, ahead of Manchester City on goal difference, while the Gunners are three points behind them in third. When they last met back in December, Arsenal were comprehensive 4-1 victors. Steph Catley, Caitlin Foord, Kyra Cooney-Cross and their team will be hoping to replicate that result on Saturday morning.

Arsenal players celebrate their teams goal by Alessia Russo in the 38th minute for 3-1.

Everton host Aston Villa on Sunday, 12am AEDT. With both teams doing enough in recent times to springboard up the ladder and away from the relegation zone, this match will be about building momentum to take with them into the latter stages of the season. Clare Wheeler is expected to be available for Everton in midfield.

It’s a battle of the Australian goalkeepers on Sunday as Teagan Micah’s Liverpool host Mackenzie Arnold’s West Ham at 11pm AEDT. The Hammers will be looking to grow their six-point gap in the relegation zone while Liverpool has a chance to jump Manchester United and sit in fourth. Arnold and Katrina Gorry are likely starters for the Hammers while Micah will be hoping to make her fifth Liverpool appearance on the weekend.

Manchester City travel to Brighton & Hove Albion on Sunday, 11.30pm AEDT. City will have an opportunity to both overcome last week’s FA Cup disappointment against Tottenham and – if Chelsea drop points against Arsenal – potentially go clear on top of the table. Mary Fowler started last week and scored early, so maybe utilised by Gareth Taylor again, while Alanna Kennedy is also available in defence. There is no word yet on if Charlie Rule will be available for the Seagulls.

Finally, Tottenham Hotspur face off against Leicester City on Monday, 1am AEDT. Both teams sit comfortably in midtable – Spurs three points ahead of the Foxes – and both will be hoping to build momentum to ensconce themselves in the top half. Charli Grant will be available for Spurs while Courtney Nevin and Remy Siemsen will line up against her.


Lyon will have the opportunity for immediate revenge against the team that knocked them out of the French Cup on the weekend, taking on Fleury on Saturday, 7am AEDT. They currently sit on top of the Division 1 Féminine and are still undefeated in the league but as the cup proved, anything can happen. Ellie Carpenter is expected to start the game at right-back.

Paris FC will travel to take on Guingamp on Sunday, 12am AEDT. They’re currently nine points clear in third and will hope to close the five-point gap between themselves and city rivals PSG in second. Sarah Hunter has found minutes hard to come by of late but will be hoping to get on the park this weekend.

PSG host Saint-Étienne on Sunday, 12.30am AEDT. They will be fully focused on keeping the pressure on Lyon at the top of the table for as long as possible. Clare Hunt was an unused substitute in their 120-minute win over Paris FC in the cup last weekend, so will be fresh legs if required on Sunday morning.

United States

San Diego Wave will get their season underway with the NWSL Challenge Cup Final, with the chance for Wave to add to their trophy cabinet. They take on Gotham FC - the 2023 NWSL Champions - on Saturday, 11am AEDT. San Diego have won all four of their meetings against Gotham but with plenty of turnover for both sides this season, anything could happen.

The Challenge Cup has been reformatted to open each season as a single contest, Super Cup format, with the prior campaign’s winner of the NWSL Shield, San Diego Wave FC taking on the reigning NWSL Champion, Gotham FC.

Kaitlyn Torpey could make her debut for the Wave in this game, while Emily van Egmond will also be available.


This weekend will see the second round of the group stage of the Swedish Cup.

BK Häcken takes on second-tier Lidköping on Sunday, 1am AEDT. They will be heavy favourites to get the win as they continue preparations ahead of their UEFA Women’s Champions League tie against PSG next week. Aivi Luik will be available for Häcken in the heart of the defence.

Meanwhile, Kristianstads DFF host Växjö DFF on Monday, 12am AEDT. They have had a positive pre-season so far and will be hoping to continue that for another week to take another step towards progression in the cup. Amy Sayer and Clare Polkinghorne will be available for Kristianstads.


Real Madrid take on Eibar on Sunday, 6am AEDT. They currently sit in second place in the Primera División, nine points behind Barcelona in first but seven points clear of third-place Levante. They’ll be hoping to continue winning to put as much pressure on undefeated Barcelona as possible. Hayley Raso will be available for Madrid.