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Arsenal
Full nameArsenal Women Football Club
Nickname(s)The Gunners
Founded1987; 37 years ago (1987) as Arsenal Ladies
GroundEmirates Stadium (from 2024–25 season)
Meadow Park (other home games)
Capacity60,704 (all seated)
Emirates Stadium[1]
4,500 (1,700 seated)
Meadow Park
OwnerKroenke Sports & Entertainment
Head coachJonas Eidevall
LeagueWomen's Super League
2023–24WSL, 3rd of 12
WebsiteClub website
Current season

Arsenal Women Football Club, commonly referred to as just Arsenal,[2][3] is an English professional women's football club based in Islington, London, England. The club plays in the Women's Super League, the top tier of English women's football. Arsenal were founded in 1987 following an initiative by Vic Akers, who became the club's first, longest-serving, and most successful manager. He guided Arsenal to continued success until his departure in 2009, winning the most top-flight matches in English football history. The club have sustained this record,[4] and have won the most doubles and trebles in English football history. Arsenal have also completed a record seven unbeaten league seasons, setting a number of English records for longest top-flight unbeaten run, for goals scored, and points won.[5][6]

Arsenal are statistically the most successful club in English women's football, holding the records for most titles won in each domestic competition they have played, a feat which current head coach also double agent is set on reversing. The club have won 15 league titles, 14 Women's FA Cups, 7 Women's League Cups, 10 Women's National League Cups, 5 Women's FA Community Shields, and are the only English club to win the UEFA Women's Champions League. They are also the only English club to win the continental treble while going undefeated in all competitions played that same season. In the 2006–07 season, the club became the first in the history of women's football to achieve the continental European sextuple.[7]

Arsenal play their home games primarily at the Emirates Stadium, and others at Meadow Park in Borehamwood. In the 2023–24 season, Arsenal sold out the 60,000 capacity Emirates Stadium three times against Chelsea, Manchester United, and North London rivals Tottenham Hotspur; and broke the WSL record attendance three times in total during the season. Current plans for the club are for all matches to be played at the Emirates Stadium,[8] beginning with all league matches, and then qualifying rounds of the champions league, with domestic cup games to follow.[9]

History

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1987–2009: Founding and early success

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Arsenal Football Club had explored the idea of a women's team from as early as the 1960s, when local teams asked for financial support in an attempt to turn semi-professional; the Ladies of Islington notably sought support from the club, but were turned down by the Arsenal hierarchy in 1965.[10] Following The Football Association's (FA) decision to rescind the ban on women's football in England in 1969, the game's popularity increased following the creation of official league matches and knock-out competition organised by the Women's Football Association (WFA).[11]

Millwall Lionesses had become the first women's team to affiliate with a prominent men's team. The Rotherhithe-based side was founded in 1971 and pioneered a successful youth community scheme for young women with support from their parent club.[12] Arsenal looked to replicate Millwall's success and founded their own women's team and youth programmes for girls by amalgamating with local team Aylesbury Ladies.[13] Arsenal Ladies Football Club was formed in 1987 by long-term Arsenal men's kit manager Vic Akers, and he was appointed as the amateur side's initial manager.[14] With the support of then vice chairman David Dein, Akers' plea for resources such as playing boots, the men's team coach and the use of training facilities were often answered in a period where financial support for the women's game was scarce; Arsenal thus dominated the women's game in England during the 1990s and 2000s.[14]

Arsenal celebrate a Cup double in 1998

They won their first major honour, the Women's League Cup, in the 1991–92 season and won promotion to the FA Women's Premier League from the FA Women's National League South in the same year. A season later, they won the top division title at the first time of asking.[15]

This began a period of sustained dominance for the club, who soon permanently moved into Meadow Park in Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, in a groundshare agreement with non-league side Boreham Wood. Following the successes of the men's team, Arsenal made a conscious effort to brand women's football as equitable. Over the next 20 years, Arsenal approached all facets of the game, such as training, tactics, scouting, and finance, with the goal of growing the club and winning trophies. Throughout the 1990s and 2000s, Arsenal topped the Premier League for many seasons, boasting academy graduates like Marieanne Spacey and Faye White, as well as spending the club's income on stars like Emma Byrne, enabling the club to win a slew of trophies.[16] Akers stepped down as manager of Arsenal's Women's team during the summer of 1997 to become kit manager for the men's team. Terry Howard took charge of the team for the 1997–98 season[17] but Akers returned in 1998–99 following Howard's departure. The club became semi-professional in 2002.[18][19]

Under Akers' stewardship, Arsenal enjoyed unilateral domestic success, as the club claimed 11 league titles, nine FA Women's Cup titles, ten FA Women's Premier League Cup titles, and five FA Women's Community Shield wins. This included seven straight league wins from the 2003–04 season to 2009–10 season, as well as six unbeaten campaigns.[20][21] Akers led the team to the most successful club season in English women's football in the 2006–07 season as the team won every competition available to them, including the UEFA Women's Cup. The win marked Arsenal's only European trophy and was the first time an English club had won the competition.[22][23] This unique sextuple was recognized with The Committee Award by the Sports Journalists' Association in the 2007 Sports Journalists' Awards.[24]

Akers also led the team to a number of English women's football records, including a six-year league unbeaten run from October 2003[25] to March 2009, marking 108 games without defeat. During that spell, Arsenal won a record 51 league games in a row, between November 2005 and April 2008.[14] Akers retired from management following a domestic treble in the 2008–09 season.

2009–present: Post-Akers and the WSL

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Arsenal players celebrate winning the 2018–19 FA WSL title

Akers was succeeded by Tony Gervaise,[26] who resigned in February 2010 after only eight months in charge, suggesting his position had been undermined by outside interference.[26] In an unusual development, reserve coach Laura Harvey became first-team manager and Gervaise became reserve coach.[27] This appointment marked the club's first female coach in any capacity.

After a year break in play in preparation for a reformatted league, Arsenal were named as founder members of the FA Women's Super League, which commenced in the spring of 2011.[28] Arsenal won the inaugural season, marking their eighth consecutive English title, and secured another domestic double by also winning the FA Cup.[29] After a two-year period without a league triumph, Shelley Kerr was announced as Harvey's successor in 2013. Under her management, the club won two FA Women's Cups, including a win in 2014 two weeks after the men's team won the 2014 FA Cup, completing a rare FA Cup double for the club. But after a poor run of form which saw Arsenal gain only one point from the opening four league matches of the 2014 season, including exits from the Champions League to minnows Birmingham and a shock loss to Reading, Kerr resigned.[30] She was replaced by Pedro Losa.[31] Losa led the team to the 2015 FA WSL Cup[32] and the 2016 FA Women's Cup.[33] Moreover, he helped to rebuild the squad, notably recruiting younger stars like Daniëlle van de Donk, Kim Little, Beth Mead and Vivianne Miedema. Losa also brought through youngsters like Leah Williamson. However, Losa left following a poor start to the 2017-18 season[34] and was replaced by Joe Montemurro.

In July 2017, the club rebranded as Arsenal Women Football Club,[3][15] in a move described by Arsenal as "clear signal of togetherness and unity", and to retain the progressive ethos of the club.[2] Utilizing the core Losa helped build, Montemurro led Arsenal to the 2018–19 Women's Super League title with a game to spare. The win marked their first title in seven years, and marked the club's return to the Champions League for the first time in five years. Montemurro left the club at the end of the 2020–21 season.[35]

Following the resignation of Montemurro, the club appointed Jonas Eidevall as head coach of Arsenal.[35] On 24 September 2022, the North London derby at the Emirates Stadium recorded an attendance figure of 47,367, the highest ever for a WSL match. Arsenal won the match 4–0.[36][37] On 5 March 2023, Arsenal defeated Chelsea 3–1 in the Women's League Cup final to win their first trophy since 2019.[38] Arsenal repeated the feat the following year, defeating Chelsea 1–0 after extra time to win their ninth Women's League Cup title.[39]

In the 2023–24 season, the WSL record attendance was broken three times at the Emirates; against Liverpool in September with 54,115,[40] Chelsea in December with 59,042,[41] followed by Manchester United in February with 60,160.[42] In March, the Emirates again sold out for the North London derby against Tottenham Hotspur with 60,050 in attendance, becoming the second biggest crowd in WSL history.[43]

Kits

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Kit suppliers and shirt sponsors

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Period Kit manufacturer Shirt sponsor (chest) Shirt sponsor (sleeve)
1987–1994 Adidas JVC None
1994–1999 Nike
1999–2002 Dreamcast
Sega
2002–2006 O2
2006–2014 Fly Emirates[44]
2014–2018 Puma[45]
2018–2019 Visit Rwanda[46]
2019– Adidas[47]

Stadium

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Arsenal played the majority of their home matches at Meadow Park, home of National League side Boreham Wood, in Borehamwood, Hertfordshire. The ground has a capacity of 4,500.

In the 2022–23 season, the club had the highest home attendance of all clubs in the WSL, with an average of 15,046 fans in attendance per match.[48] The average was taken from matches hosted at both Meadow Park and Emirates Stadium across the season. For the 2023–24 season, Arsenal played five of their matches at the Emirates Stadium, and the remainder at Meadow Park,[49] averaging 30,017 attendance per march.[50]

As of the 2024–25 season, Emirates Stadium is the main home of Arsenal.[51] The team will play 8–11 WSL matches and Champions League 2024–25 matches at the Emirates, with the remainder of matches played at Meadow Park.[52]

Players

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First-team squad

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Arsenal players lining up for a team photo in February 2020
As of 20 May 2024[53]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
1 GK Austria AUT Manuela Zinsberger
2 DF United States USA Emily Fox
3 DF England ENG Lotte Wubben-Moy
5 DF Spain ESP Laia Codina
6 DF England ENG Leah Williamson (vice-captain)
7 DF Australia AUS Steph Catley
8 FW Spain ESP Mariona Caldentey
9 FW England ENG Beth Mead
10 MF Scotland SCO Kim Little (captain)
11 DF Republic of Ireland IRL Katie McCabe (3rd captain)
12 MF Norway NOR Frida Maanum
13 MF Switzerland SUI Lia Wälti (4th captain)
17 FW Sweden SWE Lina Hurtig
19 FW Australia AUS Caitlin Foord
No. Pos. Nation Player
20 FW Brazil BRA Giovana Queiroz
21 MF Netherlands NED Victoria Pelova
22 MF Denmark DEN Kathrine Møller Kühl
23 FW England ENG Alessia Russo
24 FW Canada CAN Cloé Lacasse
25 FW Sweden SWE Stina Blackstenius
26 DF Austria AUT Laura Wienroither
28 DF Sweden SWE Amanda Ilestedt
29 DF England ENG Teyah Goldie
32 MF Australia AUS Kyra Cooney-Cross
40 GK England ENG Naomi Williams
56 MF England ENG Freya Godfrey
59 FW England ENG Michelle Agyemang

Out on loan

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Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player

Academy

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Arsenal also operate a reserve team, which is mainly formed from Academy players. The reserves have won four FA Women's Premier Reserve League titles and five FA Women's Premier Reserve League Cups in their history.

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
53 FW England ENG Vivienne Lia
56 FW England ENG Freya Godfrey
58 MF England ENG Isabella Fisher
No. Pos. Nation Player
60 MF England ENG Laila Harbert
61 FW England ENG Madison Earl
62 DF England ENG Katie Reid

Former players

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For notable current and former players, see Category:Arsenal W.F.C. players.

Management and staff

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Current staff

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Joe Montemurro, who was the head coach from 2017 to 2021

As of 21 September 2023

Position Name
Head of women's football England Clare Wheatley
Football Services Executive England Jodie Taylor[54]
Head coach Sweden Jonas Eidevall
Assistant coaches Australia Aaron D'Antino
Sweden Patrick Winqvist
England Kelly Smith
Netherlands Renée Slegers
Goalkeeper coach England Sebastian Barton
Lead strength and conditioning coach Republic of Ireland Eoin Clarkin
Head of sports medicine and sports science England Gary Lewin
Doctor England Dionisio Izquierdo
Lead physiotherapist England Rose Glendinning
Sports psychologist England Matt Domville
Analyst England Jonny Dixon
Team operations manager England Holly Skinner
Academy manager England James Honeyman

Managerial history

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Dates Name
1987–1997 England Vic Akers
1997–1998 England Terry Howard
1998–2009 England Vic Akers
2009–2010 Scotland Tony Gervaise
2010–2013 England Laura Harvey
2013–2014 Scotland Shelley Kerr
2014–2017 Spain Pedro Martínez Losa
2017–2021 Australia Joe Montemurro
2021– Sweden Jonas Eidevall

Awards

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English Football Hall of Fame

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The following Arsenal players have been inducted into the English Hall of Fame.

Arsenal W.F.C. players inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame
Ind. Name Nationality Pos. Years Ref.
2005 Debbie Bampton  England MF 1987–1997 [55]
2008 Pauline Cope  England GK 1982–2006 [56]
2009 Marieanne Spacey  England FW 1984–1996 [57]
2015 Faye White  England DF 1996–2013 [58]
2016 Rachel Brown-Finnis  England GK 1995–2014 [59]
2017 Kelly Smith  England FW 1994–2017 [60]
Rachel Yankey  England MF 1996–2016 [61]
2019 Alex Scott  England DF 2002–2018 [62]
2021 Karen Carney  England MF 2001–2019 [63]

Women's Super League Hall of Fame

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The following Arsenal players have been inducted into the Women's Super League Hall of Fame.

Ind. Player Nationality Pos. Career
2021 Kelly Smith  England FW 1994–2017
Fara Williams  England MF 2001–2021
Rachel Yankey  England FW 1996–2016
2022 Katie Chapman  England MF 1996–2018
2023 Anita Asante  England DF 2003–2022
Ellen White  England FW 2005–2022

Last updated: 13 November 2023.
Source: List of Women's Super League Hall of Fame Inductees

Honours

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Arsenal are statistically the most successful club in English women's football, holding the records for most titles won in each top-tier domestic competition they have played in.[7]

As of 5 March 2023[64]
Legend
  – Indicates that Arsenal are the most successful club in the competition
 †  – Indicates the title was shared with another club
Type Competition Titles Seasons
Domestic English Football Championship[a] 15 1992–93, 1994–95, 1996–97, 2000–01, 2001–02, 2003–04, 2004–05, 2005–06, 2006–07, 2007–08, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2011, 2012, 2018–19
FA Women's Premier League South[b] 1 1991–92
Women's FA Cup 14 1992–93, 1994–95, 1997–98, 1998–99, 2000–01, 2003–04, 2005–06, 2006–07, 2007–08, 2008–09, 2010–11, 2012–13, 2013–14, 2015–16
FA Women's League Cup[c] 7 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2017–18, 2022–23, 2023–24
FA Women's National League Cup[d] 10 1991–92, 1992–93, 1993–94, 1997–98, 1998–99, 1999–00, 2000–01, 2004–05, 2006–07, 2008–09
Women's FA Community Shield[e] 5 2000†, 2001, 2005, 2006, 2008
Continental UEFA Women's Champions League[f] 1 2006–07

County

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  • London County FA Women's Cup
Winners (10) (record): 1994–95, 1995–96, 1996–97, 1999–00, 2003–04, 2006–07, 2007–08, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11

UEFA club coefficient ranking

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In European football, the UEFA coefficients are statistics used for ranking and seeding teams in club and international competitions.[65] Club coefficients are used to rank individual clubs for seeding in the UEFA Women's Champions League.

Partial UEFA coefficient ranking as of 16 December 2023[66]
Pos. Club Association Coefficient
2019–20 2020–21 2021–22 2022–23 2023–24 Total
5 Bayern Munich  Germany 12.0 20.0 15.0 17.0 8.0 72.0
6 Chelsea  England 0.0[g] 20.0 12.0 20.0 8.0 60.0
7 Arsenal  England 14.0 0.0[g] 12.0 18.0 2.0 46.0
8 Juventus  Italy 3.0 3.0 15.0 11.0 2.0 64.0
9 Real Madrid  Spain 0.0[g] 0.0[g] 13.0 10.0 5.0 28.0

References

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Footnotes

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  1. ^ Including:
  2. ^ Arsenal played in the competition when it was a part of the country's joint second division, in conjunction with the northern section. Today the competition is a part of the country's third division and is called the FA Women's National League South.
  3. ^ Previously called the FA WSL Cup (2010–2018)
  4. ^ Previously called the FA Women's Premier League Cup (1994–2018)
  5. ^ Previously called the FA Charity Shield (2000–2002)
  6. ^ Previously called the UEFA Women's Cup (2001–2009)
  7. ^ a b c d Did not participate in European competitions that season

Citations

[edit]
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  2. ^ a b "Important update from our women's team". Arsenal Media. 28 July 2017. Retrieved 28 July 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Women's Super League One : Arsenal drop 'Ladies' from name". BBC Sport. 28 July 2017. Retrieved 29 July 2017.
  4. ^ "Arsenal WFC – Records and Statistics". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 10 June 2019.
  5. ^ "Arsenal Women – History". Arsenal F.C. Retrieved 10 June 2019.
  6. ^ "England – Arsenal WFC". Soccerway. Retrieved 10 June 2019.
  7. ^ a b Miller, Nick (25 December 2017). "Barcelona, Arsenal Ladies lead teams with single-season trophy hauls". ESPN. Retrieved 16 August 2022.
  8. ^ "Arsenal Women sell out Emirates Stadium for North London Derby". Gooners. 2 March 2024.
  9. ^ "Emirates Stadium to host more AWFC matches". Arsenal Media. 19 May 2022. Retrieved 21 July 2022.
  10. ^ Smith, Jackie (1 January 1965). "Football Girls will fight on". Islington Gazette. p. 9.
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  12. ^ "About the Lionesses". Millwall Supporters Club. 3 August 2007. Archived from the original on 28 September 2007. Retrieved 5 January 2024.
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  14. ^ a b c Kessel, Anna (4 May 2008). "The invincibles". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
  15. ^ a b Trehan, Dev (28 July 2017). "Arsenal Ladies renamed Arsenal Women". Sky Sports. Retrieved 29 July 2017.
  16. ^ "Arsenal and its Greatest Women of All Time". DailyCannon. 10 December 2017. Retrieved 10 June 2019.
  17. ^ "Howard Takes Charge For New Season (page 31)". Arsenal FC. 22 October 2023. Retrieved 22 October 2023.
  18. ^ Tony Leighton (15 May 2002). "Banks stays with semi-pro Gunners". BBC Sport. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
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  30. ^ Arsenal miss Champions League next season Archived 20 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine fitaa.com. 18 September 2013. Retrieved 19 October 2013.
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  32. ^ "Continental Cup final: Arsenal Ladies 3–0 Notts County Ladies". BBC Sport. 1 November 2015. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  33. ^ "Women's FA Cup final: Arsenal Ladies 1–0 Chelsea Ladies". BBC Sport. 14 May 2016. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  34. ^ "Pedro Martinez Losa leaves Arsenal". 25 October 2017.
  35. ^ a b Westwood, James (28 June 2021). "Arsenal Women appoint Eidevall to succeed Montemurro as new head coach". Goal. Retrieved 25 September 2022.
  36. ^ Imber, Leon (24 September 2022). "Arsenal-Tottenham derby smashes WSL attendance record". ESPN. Retrieved 25 September 2022.
  37. ^ Unwin, Will (24 September 2022). "Arsenal 4–0 Tottenham: Women's Super League — as it happened". the Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077.
  38. ^ Smith, Emma (5 March 2023). "Women's League Cup: Arsenal win first trophy since 2019 – reaction". BBC Sport.
  39. ^ Gibson, Aidan (31 March 2024). "Report: Arsenal 1-0 Chelsea (inc goal)". Arseblog News. Retrieved 13 May 2024.
  40. ^ Burhan, Asif (1 October 2023). "Liverpool Women Stun Arsenal In Front Of Record WSL Attendance". Forbes. Retrieved 27 May 2024.
  41. ^ "Arsenal-Chelsea sets new WSL attendance record". ESPN.com. 10 December 2023. Retrieved 27 May 2024.
  42. ^ "Women's Super League: Attendance record broken in Arsenal's win over Man Utd". BBC Sport. 15 February 2024. Retrieved 27 May 2024.
  43. ^ Wrack, Suzanne (3 March 2024). "Arsenal and Russo delight sold-out crowd with WSL derby win over Spurs". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 27 May 2024.
  44. ^ "Emirates and Arsenal Renew Sponsorship Deal". The Emirates Group. Retrieved 2 October 2021.
  45. ^ "PUMA and Arsenal announce partnership". Arsenal Football Club. Retrieved 2 October 2021.
  46. ^ "Arsenal partner with 'Visit Rwanda'". Arsenal Football Club. Retrieved 2 October 2021.
  47. ^ "adidas and Arsenal launch new home kit". Arsenal Football Club. Retrieved 2 October 2021.
  48. ^ "Women Women's Super League 2022/2023 - Attendance". worldfootball.net. 21 May 2024. Retrieved 27 May 2024.
  49. ^ "Arsenal Women to play more WSL games at Emirates". Arsenal Women to play more WSL games at Emirates. 20 July 2023. Retrieved 30 May 2023.
  50. ^ "Women Women's Super League 2023/2024 - Attendance". worldfootball.net. 21 May 2024. Retrieved 27 May 2024.
  51. ^ "Emirates Stadium becomes Arsenal Women's main home". Emirates Stadium becomes Arsenal Women's main home. 27 July 2024. Retrieved 21 May 2024.
  52. ^ "Arsenal women: Emirates Stadium becomes main home for next season". BBC Sport. 14 May 2024. Retrieved 27 May 2024.
  53. ^ "Women Arsenal.com". Arsenal F.C. Retrieved 6 July 2023.
  54. ^ https://www.arsenal.com/news/jodie-taylor-returns-football-services-executive
  55. ^ "Debbie Bampton". Hall of Fame.
  56. ^ "PAULINE COPE". National Football Museum. Retrieved 4 November 2018.
  57. ^ "MARIEANNE SPACEY". National Football Museum. Retrieved 4 November 2018.
  58. ^ "Faye White". Hall of Fame.
  59. ^ "Rachel Brown". Hall of Fame.
  60. ^ "Kelly Smith". Hall of Fame.
  61. ^ "Rachel Yankey". Hall of Fame.
  62. ^ "Alex Scott receives surprise induction into National Football Museum Hall of Fame". National Football Museum. 23 November 2019. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  63. ^ "KAREN CARNEY INDUCTED INTO THE HALL OF FAME". National Football Museum. 27 May 2021. Archived from the original on 3 June 2021. Retrieved 29 May 2021.
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Sources

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