What needs to be decided in WSL finale?

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May 7, 2021
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    Anita Asante, Sam Kerr, Ellie Roebuck and Ebony SalmonAll Women's Super League matches will kick off at 14:30 BST on Sunday

    The Women's Super League comes to a close this weekend with the final round of games – but there is still plenty to play for.

    Will Chelsea win the title? Can Bristol City avoid the drop? Who will finish top goalscorer? And who will keep the most clean sheets?

    Here is everything you need to know…

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    Who will win the title?

    WSL top of the table graphic

    Defending champions Chelsea are in the driving seat going into the final day.

    They sit two points above Manchester City, meaning victory at home to Reading will hand them the title.

    A draw for the Blues opens the door for City, who would then have to beat West Ham by four goals to clinch the title on goal difference.

    A defeat for Chelsea and win for City takes the title to the Academy Stadium.

    DNA of Chelsea football club is winning – Hayes

    "I think the fact it has been the strongest WSL season, this will probably rank as the best," said Chelsea boss Emma Hayes on where this title would rank for her.

    "I think we've looked the dominant team. I think Man City have had a tremendous season, pushing us the whole way. I just hope we do enough on Sunday to cross the line."

    City boss Gareth Taylor said: "We need to win first off then we need to win by three goals minimum.

    "We're more than capable of doing that. That's what we're looking to achieve. Outside of that, things will either go for us or they won't."

    Who will be relegated?

    WSL bottom of the table graphic

    Just three points separate the bottom four teams heading into the final weekend but only one team will go down.

    West Ham are realistically safe as Bristol City, currently bottom, would have to overturn a 35-goal deficit on the final day to overtake the Hammers.

    Birmingham City would ordinarily assume they are also safe because of their vastly superior goal difference – but they are awaiting the outcome of a Football Association charge after midfielder Ruesha Littlejohn played in the draw with Reading when she should have served a suspension.

    A points deduction is a possibility for Birmingham so they will be looking to get a result against Tottenham to make sure of their safety.

    It's simple for Bristol City. They have to beat Brighton and hope Aston Villa lose to Arsenal.

    "If we're not nervous we wouldn't be human. It's a big game. Everyone knows what's at stake. We have spoken about these types of situations throughout the whole relegation battle," said Bristol City manager Matt Beard.

    "It's just one big performance needed from us and hopefully that will be enough. It will be a tense afternoon but some of us have been in this position before."

    A draw will be enough to keep Aston Villa up regardless of Bristol City's result because of that -52 goal difference for the bottom club.

    Championship winners Leicester City sealed promotion to the WSL on 4 April.

    Bottom four teams' fixtures on the final day
    Arsenal v Aston Villa Birmingham City v Tottenham
    Brighton v Bristol City West Ham v Manchester City

    Who qualifies for Europe?

    The top three qualify for next season's Women's Champions League.

    Chelsea, who are in this year's final, have secured their place alongside Manchester City, who were knocked out at the quarter-final stage.

    Arsenal's 94th-minute winner against Everton last weekend sealed their spot ahead of fourth-placed Manchester United because of their vastly superior goal difference.

    Who will pick up individuals awards?

    Ann-Katrin Berger, Ellie Roebuck, Vivianne Miedema and Sam Kerr(Left to right) Ann-Katrin Berger, Ellie Roebuck, Vivianne Miedema and Sam Kerr are all chasing individual awards

    The race for the Golden Boot has gone to the wire.

    Chelsea's Sam Kerr leads the way with 20 goals, following her brace against Spurs on Wednesday, with Arsenal's Vivianne Miedema two behind.

    Chelsea's Fran Kirby, with 14 goals and 10 assists, would need a remarkable final day of the season to challenge her team-mate Kerr.

    However, Kirby netted four against Sunday's opponents Reading in the reverse fixture back in January so do not rule anything out.

    Manchester City goalkeeper Ellie Roebuck and Chelsea's Ann-Katrin Berger are currently locked on 11 clean sheets each in the race for the Golden Glove – the pair will share the award if they are still level after the final day.

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