Chelsea Women head coach Emma Hayes expects this to be a “blockbuster weekend” of WSL action, with her champions hoping to bounce back against Manchester City on Sunday, live on Sky Sports.
The Blues host City at a sold-out Kingsmeadow in front of the Sky cameras, looking to recover after defeat to Liverpool on the opening weekend, but that is not the only big game for WSL fans to get stuck into this weekend.
Arsenal are expected to break the WSL attendance record on Saturday lunchtime when they host Tottenham at the Emirates for the north London derby – and if that was not enough there is a Merseyside derby between Liverpool and Everton at Anfield on Sunday shortly after Chelsea’s game – also live on Sky Sports.
The record-breaking north London derby
Arsenal say they have sold more than 51,000 tickets to Saturday’s north London derby against Tottenham at the Emirates. It is set to smash the previous record of 38,262, which was set in the reverse fixture back in 2019.
Hayes is pleased the WSL has taken advantage of the men’s international break to maximise its potential audience this weekend, with interest in the women’s game at an all-time high following England’s triumphant Euro campaign during the summer.
“It’s just going to be a blockbuster weekend,” Hayes told Sky Sports.” Packed crowds and hopefully great broadcasting numbers.
“I think this is the second year we’ve started doing men’s international breaks well.
“This is a celebration of the work of everyone. This isn’t just about the clubs, I think everybody involved in the women’s game has been working hard to get some consistency around this type of weekend and I think we will see this more often than not.”
Chelsea helped break Sky Sports’ WSL record viewing figures in their season opener against Liverpool, with a peak audience of 482,000 tuning in to watch Hayes’ champions being beaten 2-1 by two second-half Katie Stengel penalties.
There was also an average audience of 381,000 – which is 21 per cent higher than last season’s record.
“That’s what you’re investing in,” Hayes said of the viewing figures. “Everyone is investing to get those numbers to those places and long may that continue because it creates more investment.
“I have always been an advocate of pulling the top level up and create that trickle down so that further down the pyramid can keep benefitting from what is going on at the top end of the game.”
How to follow the WSL on Sky Sports…
Sky Sports – All 35 live televised games will be available across Sky Sports’ flagship channels, including Sky Sports Premier League, Sky Sports Football and Sky Sports Main Event.
Sky Sports News – Running 24 hours a day, seven days a week, Barclays FA WSL fans can enjoy Sky Sports News (channel 409) rolling editorial coverage of the league and its storylines throughout the season.
Inside the WSL – Hosted by award-winning broadcaster and journalist Jessica Creighton, Inside the WSL is a comprehensive round-up of all things Barclays FA Women’s Super League and women’s football. Airing weekly on Sky Sports Premier League, the half-an-hour show will review and preview matches, including in-depth analysis and exclusive player interviews. Viewers can expect gripping behind-the-scenes access as well as a summary of all the action both on and off the pitch.
Sky Sports Social – Alongside coverage and visibility for the league across all Sky Sports’ main social media channels, the bespoke Twitter channel @SkySportsWSL will continue to be the home of all Barclays FA WSL content on Sky Sports.
New to the 2022/23 season, the Sky Sports WSL TikTok account will be giving fans 360° coverage of the league and granting them exclusive access to their new favourite players. Also a first for the league, a new Snapchat Discover show The Dub aims to become the platform’s new hub for Barclays’ WSL content.
Sky Showcase – All Sky customers will benefit from being able to watch the opening weekend fixtures on Sky Showcase (channel 106) without a Sky Sports subscription. This channel is designed to curate some of the top shows, films and sports from across Sky’s channels.
Sky Sports digital – Follow all the latest from the WSL across SkySports.com and app, including exclusive features and interviews, plus dedicated live blog coverage and in-game clips from games live on Sky Sports. You can watch free match highlights from every WSL game this season on Sky Sports’ digital platforms and YouTube channel.