The FA has issued an update on the progress of discussions regarding the continuation of the Women’s Super League and Women’s Championship seasons.
The statement in itself is rather vague and has left fans wondering what might happen to their favourite team.
Here are the different possibilities of what could happen to the top two tiers of women’s football in England.
Null and Void
Null and void is the one outcome the majority of people would not like to see imparted on the leagues.
This would see both the Super League and the Championship declared over. Neither league would have a champion nor a promotion or relegation.Embed from Getty Images
Aston Villa would be denied promotion to the WSL, despite their six-point lead atop the Championship table.
Chelsea would lose out on the WSL title, with the Blues looking set to win the title should the league be decided by PPG.
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However, there is one eventuality that will actually favour one of the clubs.
Liverpool currently sit bottom of the WSL. They would be relegated under other circumstances that prevent them from playing the remainder of their games.
The least likely of the outcomes possible is a continuation of the league. This would see the rest of the games being played out behind closed doors.
This outcome is highly unlikely. It would need all of the clubs in both leagues to make funds available for all of the safety provisions regarding the ongoing pandemic.
An earlier estimation is that it would cost £140,000 per club to have all the necessary precautions in place.Embed from Getty Images
That would be around 15% of Liverpool’s turnover for the fiscal year 2018/19. It would also be 102% of Aston Villa’s turnover in the same period.
It would not be financially sustainable for every club to afford the running costs for the rest of the season.
The FA could help the clubs with funding, but the history of the under-funding of the women’s game won’t put much hope in the hearts of fans.
Points Per Game
PPG is the most likely and possibly the fairest way of deciding the standings of each respective league table.
The FA could decide to use a weighted or unweighted PPG table to establish the final standings.
A weighted table would take each team’s average points per home game and points per away game.
It would be average home points x 11 + average away points x 11.
A weighted table would see Chelsea win the league. They’d finish two points ahead of Manchester City and three and a half points ahead of Arsenal.
Liverpool would be relegated, with Aston Villa coming up from the Championship.
An unweighted table would take a team’s average points as it stands in the league.
The equation would be average points x 11.
Chelsea would still win the league, with an extra 0.6 points to their name, with City finishing behind them on 55 points.
Liverpool would earn even fewer points, leaving them bottom of the table on 9.4 points.
Aston Villa would still gain promotion to the WSL, leaving the decision to chose a weighted or unweighted PPG model largely obsolete.
PPG with no Promotion or Relegation
There’s also the chance that the FA could decide to end the season with a PPG model, award Chelsea and Villa their respective titles but not include promotion or relegation.
The FA could do this to preserve Liverpool’s WSL status, in order to keep such a big name in their top division.
They could also schedule a play-off between Liverpool and Villa when it is safe to do so, to decide which side gets to play in the top flight.
Liverpool and Villa have history this season already, with the Villains beating the Reds 2-0 in the Continental Cup.
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Whichever way the FA decide to conclude the season, there will be both happy and unhappy parties.
There is no universal decision that will leave everyone content. The FA will be forced to make a hard decision.
It could change the landscape of women’s football and it needs careful consideration before making it.