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Why this weekend could be the biggest ever in the history of women’s football

'I hope the weekend changes perceptions, but the most important thing is people enjoy it and want to come back on a regular basis'

Women’s football is gearing up for a huge weekend in its history.

You can make a strong case to say its biggest ever.

With the international break bringing men’s Premier League and Championship fixtures to a halt for the weekend, the women’s game is to take centre stage this Sunday.

A whole day of derbies? Yes please

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A whole day of derbies? Yes please

The FA are calling on supporters to capitalise on the men’s break and support Women’s Football Weekend and to attend a match at any level in the football pyramid.

A mouthwatering set of fixtures is on the cards, especially in the FA Women’s Super League, including the north London derby between Spurs and Arsenal – the first matchup of the rivals in the league’s history.

Liverpool and Everton will also battle it out at Anfield for Merseyside bragging rights, while Chelsea face Man United at Kingsmeadow.

Vivianne Miedema will hope to continue her fine form this season against the Gunners’ bitter rivals

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Vivianne Miedema will hope to continue her fine form this season against the Gunners’ bitter rivals

It’s not just in the top flight where a number of star-studded clashes are on the cards, with the FA Women’s Championship too offering its fair share of thrilling matchups.

The pick of the bunch an all-capital affair as London City Lionesses’ face Crystal Palace.

There will also be a full league and cup fixture schedule across the rest of the women’s football pyramid.

The timing of the initiative couldn’t be better after the Lionesses sold out Wembley Stadium for a friendly against Germany last weekend.

“Potentially this is the biggest weekend ever for women’s football in the UK,” claims ex-West Ham and QPR ladies star Samantha Miller.

“The Lionesses’ game at Wembley last weekend was a real statement and lets hope this weekend can have the same impact.”

Phil Neville’s side were beaten by Germany but the attendance confirmed a growing appetite for the women’s game

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Phil Neville’s side were beaten by Germany but the attendance confirmed a growing appetite for the women’s game

Women’s Football Weekend has been given a further boost after Sam Kerr, one of the biggest stars in the women’s game, signed for Chelsea.

The Australian is another marquee addition to the FAWSL and although Kerr can’t feature for the Blues until January, it’s another step in the right direction for the women’s game in England.

“The news of Sam Kerr joining the FAWSL just shows how big this week has been for women’s football in England,” says Samantha.

One of the best in the business

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One of the best in the business

“The fact one of the best players in the world has chosen to come to England is a statement in itself.

“You’ve got some of the biggest games taking place this weekend and the spotlight is fully on women’s football.

“I’ve been involved with women’s football most of my life and this weekend I will feel very proud of the part everyone has played in making this happen and getting it to the stage it’s at now.”

Samantha Miller in action for QPR ladies

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Samantha Miller in action for QPR ladies

There’s hope from within the FA that there can be successful retention of the influx of new fans this weekend.

Samantha believes that Sunday’s initiative is the perfect opportunity to introduce a whole new audience to the women’s game.

“Hopefully it leads to a consistent increase in attendances and the women’s game gets the recognition it deserves.

“Have an open mind, that’s the main thing I would say to people coming to their first game on Sunday.

“I would love the weekend to change people’s perceptions of women’s football.”

More information on Women’s Football Weekend can be found here.

You can keep up to date with the weekend’s action on the FAWSL Twitter account.

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