Fascinating title battles set to come in the women’s European leagues

Some rivalries are close — Martina Navratilova edged Chris Evert 43-37 in their tussles. Other battles saw one adversary hold a distinct advantage — Serena Williams with a 20-2 record, including 19 in a row against Maria Sharapova.

The contest between Division 1 Féminine sides Lyon and PSG definitely falls into the latter category, with Lyon taking the role of Serena, writes Martin Whiteley.

PSG v Lyon

Consistency has not been the problem for PSG, as they have not lost more than two games in any of the last seven seasons that they have finished second.

Strangely, the one-year PSG finished outside the top two – 2017 – they did manage to inflict the last league loss on Lyon — a 1-0 home success in December 2016.

The problem for PSG is that Lyon has only lost twice in league play since 2011 and they continue to inflict the defeat that dents PSG’s title hopes.

Heading into their first meeting in Paris this season, it was Lyon who once more sat top of the table and held a two-point advantage over the hosts.

Not content with sitting back this time around, a much more aggressive approach by PSG saw them rewarded with a 10th-minute goal from Marie-Antoinette Katoto.

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Lyon was certainly not helped when Eugénie Le Sommer was forced off with an injury just short of the half-hour mark. Nikita Parris was the replacement for the France international.

PSG matched their opponents throughout the game. When the final whistle sounded — in a near-deserted Parc des Princes — all the years of heartache were forgotten as the hosts were finally able to celebrate another victory against Lyon.

The job facing PSG to fully overturn the supremacy of Lyon will not be an easy one. At the moment the prerenal runners-up just want to make their rivalry with the champions a little more of a Martina and Chrissie battle going forward. Being the new home for the Division 1 Féminine trophy would just be an added bonus.

Wolfsburg v Bayern Munich

The same scene had played out in Germany the previous weekend.

A 4-1 win against champions Wolfsburg had given Bayern Munich a five-point advantage at the top of the Frauen-Bundesliga table as they look to regain the title they last won in 2016.

Bayern Munich v Bayer Leverkusen

Unfortunately, for Bayern, a positive Covid-19 result from an opposition player meant their home game against Bayer Leverkusen was postponed this weekend as they went in search of their 10th straight win.

Wolfsburg v Eintracht Frankfurt

The inactivity of the leaders allowed Wolfsburg to close the gap after they recorded a 3-0 home win against Eintracht Frankfurt.

Of all the major continental leagues, Spain is the one that tends to see the pecking order change most frequently.

Barcelona v Real Sociedad 

Barcelona’s bid for back-to-back league titles saw them return to action to gain their sixth straight win after a 5-1 home success against Real Sociedad.

Deportivo La Coruña v Atlético Madrid 

An 8-1 victory away to Deportivo La Coruña moved Atlético Madrid — winners of the previous three championships — top on 20 points, but they have now played three more games than Barca. Ludmila with four goals.

The women’s German, French and Spanish leagues will take a two week break for international games and will resume again on the 2nd December. 

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