Originally called Chelsea Ladies Football Club, Chelsea F.C Women was established in 1992 and has been affiliated with Chelsea Football Club since 2004. The first team competes in the FA Women’s Super League (WSL).
In 2010, the WSL was established that is currently ran by the Football Association. The league replaced the FA Women’s Premier League National Division as the highest level of women’s football in England.
It is in the WSL that the Blues have made a name for themselves, and ultimately, the WSL.
The start of something special
In 2013, Chelsea narrowly escaped relegation after a difficult season. In a fourteen-game season, they lost 10 games, drew 1 and won only 3. It was Emma Hayes’ first full season at Chelsea, and she had the full backing of the club which was fully embracing women’s football.
In 2014 however, saw a resurgence: a new Chelsea. In the months before the 2014 season, there was a big change in the recruitment policy. Emma Hayes got the chance to grow her team with experienced English players with winning in their DNA.
The changes were reflected in their on-pitch performances that season. After nearly getting relegated in the 2013 season, Chelsea found themselves in a three-way battle for the title on the final day of the 2014 season.
After losing their goalkeeper to injury with no back-up, Clare Fallow, who was bought a few weeks prior as a precaution, was brought on. From that day, it was her only WSL appearance to date. Unfortunately, the Blues couldn’t manage a draw, which is all they needed to clinch the title that year.
In 2014, the WSL title was Liverpool’s to take. Chelsea and Liverpool finished equal on points, but Liverpool’s goal difference was the deciding number.
Nevertheless, Emma Hayes and her team had everything to be proud of. In the span of one year, going from a relegation zone to lifting the WSL trophy was an impressive turnaround.
It was the start of something special.
The first of many
In 2015, halfway through the WSL season, Chelsea won the FA Cup for their first ever trophy. It was a huge motivation to finish the WSL season strong and add a second trophy to their collection.
Once again, the title race went down to the final matchday. A 4-0 win against Sunderland – exactly 23 years after the reformed women’s team had played their first game back in 1992 – was a victory that led to Chelsea’s first-ever WSL title.
10 wins, 2 draws and 2 losses later, Chelsea hoisted the WSL trophy, the first of many.
Chelsea finished runners-up in the 2016 season and were unable to defend their FA Cup title as well. It was still a good season for the Blues, but if anything, it was just a small bump on the road for them.
Ever since the start of the 2017/18 season, Chelsea have been the team to beat. Emma Hayes has since built a team that is somewhat invincible.
Here are their mind blowing accolades ever since the start of the 2017/18 season;
- 5 WSL titles
- 92 wins, 20 draws and 7 losses in 119 games
- 334 Goals Scored
- 74 Goals Conceded
- Unbeaten in two seasons (2017/18 and 2019/20)
It was an era where club legends Eni Aluko, Karen Carney, Carly Telford, Ji So-yun, Drew Spence, Pernille Harder and Magda Eriksson got to shine for the club and leave behind their legacies as they departed the club.
It was also an era where new and current legends were born – Sam Kerr, Millie Bright, Fran Kirby and Erin Cubhert.
As of the 2023/24 season, Emma Hayes’ mighty Blues have started out strong. With players like Guro Reiten and Lauren James aiming to join the list of legends, the club has won 3 out 4 matches so far this season, and sit second.
Chelsea look as threatening as ever, as they aim for a seventh WSL title, sixth FA Cup title – they are the previous winners of both – as well as a first UEFA Women’s Champions League title.
Chelsea have singlehandedly changed the women’s game, and have shone a bright light on it. Emma Hayes and her squad have redefined the game.
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