Matildas Abroad Preview: Raso prepares for El Clásico; City set for a first-ever Manchester derby at Old Trafford

Hayley Raso will play in her first women’s El Clásico on the weekend, as Real Madrid travel to Barcelona in the showpiece event. In England, Alanna Kennedy and Mary Fowler's Manchester City will be looking to get back to winning ways when they face Manchester United in a first-ever derby held at the iconic Old Trafford.

Read our preview of the Matildas Abroad action below.

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England

Sam Kerr’s Chelsea are straight back into the action after their midweek Champions League draw with Real Madrid, taking on Teagan Micah’s Liverpool on Sunday, 12.30am AEDT. Kerr is in good form, scoring in Chelsea’s last two games, and only a brave person would count against her continuing her run of goals. Micah, meanwhile, may still be out of contention with a calf injury.

Sam Kerr of Chelsea celebrates with teammates Johanna Rytting Kaneryd and Jessie Fleming after scoring the team's second goal during the Barclays Women´s Super League match between Everton FC and Chelsea FC at Walton Hall Park on November 12, 2023 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Lewis Storey/Getty Images)

Everton will be hoping for three points to steer them clear of the relegation zone as they take on fellow stragglers Bristol City on Monday, 12am AEDT. Clare Wheeler has been starting at wing-back for the Blues in recent times and the versatile 25-year-old will be important to their success.

Four CommBank Matildas will be in action as Charlie Rule’s Brighton & Hove Albion host Arsenal on Monday, 1am AEDT. Caitlin Foord and Steph Catley have been ever-present for the Gunners while Kyra Cooney-Cross impressed in her first league start against Leicester City. Meanwhile, 20-year-old Rule has been a consistent option off the bench for Brighton.

Arsenal players celebrate Arsenal forward Caitlin Foord (19) scoring during the FA Women s Super League match between Leicester CIty Women and Arsenal Women FC at the King Power Stadium, Leicester, England on 12 November 2023.

Mackenzie Arnold’s West Ham take on Aston Villa on Monday, 2am AEDT. Both sides sit in a relegation battle as it stands and three points would go a long way to separating themselves from the pack. Arnold will be hoping for a second clean sheet of the season to inspire the team that she captains to victory.

Leicester City will host Tottenham Hotspur on Monday, 2am AEDT. Courtney Nevin has consistently started at left-back for the Foxes while Remy Siemsen made her first matchday squad last week after recovering from an ankle injury, and will be hoping for her first minutes of the season this time around.

The round finishes with a spicy Manchester Derby at Old Trafford on Monday, 3.30am AEDT. Mary Fowler and Alanna Kennedy will line up in Manchester City blue as they hope to recover from a shock loss to Brighton & Hove Albion last week. A win over Manchester United will see them leap over their rivals on the table to finish the weekend as high as third, depending on other results.

France

Ellie Carpenter’s Lyon will look to continue to assert their dominance in both league and continental competitions, taking on Dijon on Saturday, 7am AEDT. Carpenter is ever-present at right full-back for the French champions - their league record currently sits at seven wins from seven, with only two goals conceded.

Meanwhile, PSG will be hoping to bounce back after a midweek Champions League loss to Ajax, taking on Fleury on Monday, 1am AEDT. Clare Hunt has been a consistent starter since recovering from an early season injury, as the 24-year-old continues to grow into life in Paris.

Spain

Hayley Raso will play in her biggest game in Spain so far on the weekend – the women’s El Clásico. Barcelona hosts her Real Madrid in the 54,367-capacity Olympic Stadium on Sunday, 10pm AEDT. 

Hayley Raso of Real Madrid celebrates her goal with teammates during the Liga F match between Real Madrid and Real Betis.(Photo: Real Madrid Twitter)

It will be an enormous achievement for Madrid to take points off Barcelona, who currently sit top of the table with eight wins from eight and only two goals conceded. However, strange things happen in derbies – and it is likely that Raso will be central to proceedings, whether starting or from the bench.

Mexico

Tigres UANL plays the first leg of the Apertura Liga MX semi-final against Monterrey on Saturday, 12pm AEDT. Alex Chidiac has been used predominantly from the bench for Tigres as her side hopes for a good result to take with them into the second leg on Tuesday, 1pm AEDT.