Matildas Abroad: Saves, goals and assists as a record number of Aussies in European action

With two additional European leagues commencing over the weekend, there were a record 16 Westfield Matildas taking to the pitch in Norway, Sweden, France and England. 

England

Arsenal WFC kicked off the proceedings for the Aussies in the FA Women’s Super League on Sunday night. Westfield Matildas vice captain  Steph Catley earned her first start for the Gunners as they commenced the season with bang. 

Catley was busy in her 69 minutes, playing her part in Vivianne Miedema’s first goal of the season and coming close to goal on debut when her 28th minute free kick cannoned into the crossbar.    

Caitlin Foord also made her league debut with the forward entering the fray in the 69th minute.  It didn’t take Foord long to make an impact as she provided assists for Dutch duo Vivianne Miedema and Jill Roord as Arsenal clamed a 6-1 win. 


Everton were on the road in the opening round with Hayley Raso finally getting the chance to run out for the Toffees in 2020.  Raso was bright in her 71 minutes helping Everton claim a strong 4-0 win over Bristol City. 

Raso Everton debut
Raso on debut for Everton (Photo Credit: FA Women's Super League)

It was bittersweet with Westfield Matildas teammate Chloe Logarzo lining up on the other end of the pitch for the Robins alongside Aussie Ella Mastrantonio.  Logarzo and Mastrantonio both recorded 90 minutes in the loss. 

At the Hive Stadium three Westfield Matildas made their FAWSL debuts with Mackenzie Arnold starting for the Hammers in goal. 


Arnold was joined by Emily van Egmond in the 54th minute, while Alanna Kennedy entered the fray in the 68th minute. 

Despite some back and forth, it ended up all square with both sides taking points in the 1-1 draw. 

The final match to complete the round saw defending champions Chelsea on the road to Manchester United. 

Sam Kerr opened her 2020/21 FAWSL account in the 25th minute when she turned in a well-weighted Fran Kirby ball. 

Despite Chelsea having the better of the play, United were able to hit back late with an equaliser earned both sides a point. 

France

The opening weekend of the Feminine Division 1 kicked off with Fleury 91 hosting Montpellier.  On the back of strong performances in pre-season, Mary Fowler earned a start in the season opener.  The match finished 0-0 with Fowler notching up 64 minutes while Emma Checker was an unused substitute. 

Later in the day Laura Brock’s Guingamp were on the road to Paris Saint-Germain.  Brock made her league debut in the 56th minute but PSG came away with a 4-1 victory. 


The final match of the round saw Ellie Carpenter also make her league and starting debut for Lyon against Paris FC. 

Carpenter her usual attacking self and in the 75th minute earned a penalty through a bustling run.  The penalty was converted by Eugiene Le Sommer as the defending champions ran out 4-0 winners. 

Norway

It was another Aussie v Aussie battle as Teagan Micah and Arna-Bjørnar welcomed an Avaldsnes team in good form thanks to the contributions of Katrina Gorry and Clare Polkinghorne

Micah played a full 90 minutes for Arna-Bjørnar in goals, while Gorry was subbed out in the 83rd minute and Polkinghorne safely saw out Avaldsnes’ 2-0 win.  Avaldsnes has now moved up to second place on the back of claiming 13 points out of a possible 15 in their last five matches. 

Later that day LSK took on Rosenborg in a tight contest between the two well matched sides.  Karly Roestbakken played 90 minutes as the defending champions fell narrowly 1-0 to the visitors.   

Sweden

It was another good result for Vittjso as they continued their climb up the Damallsvenskan ladder with a 1-0 win over Uppsala away from home.  Emily Gielnik played a full 90 minutes and, while she didn't get on the scoreboard, she headed her teammate Clara Markstedt into space for the match winner.