Tottenham Hotspur vs. Chelsea Women, WSL preview, predicted XI

Well, in order to set up a nail-biting final day, Chelsea Women need to take care of business against a mid-table Tottenham side on the road. Here's a look at what you need to know ahead of this must-see mid-week clash.
Chelsea FC  v Bristol City - Barclays Women´s Super League
Chelsea FC v Bristol City - Barclays Women´s Super League / Warren Little/GettyImages

As Emma Hayes said, "It's not f****ing over yet." There's a title to win. Two games. Both are on the road with the opportunity to send more than just one club legend off into the sunset.

Ahead of what is shaping up to be a captivating final day of the Women's Super League season, Chelsea Women have a job to do at Brisbane Road. Emma Hayes' side meet sixth-place Tottenham Hotspur for the first time on Wednesday since the opening game of the campaign at Stamford Bridge, a match that the Chels won by two goals to one. That feels like a decade ago right now. Both goalscorers from that afternoon are in fact unavailable for selection.

James is still dealing with a foot issue and will not be considered per Hayes as an attacking option in this must-win 90 minutes tomorrow evening. Serbian Jelena Cankovic and forward Marya Ramirez are also not in contention for the squad in the mid-week. The midfielder maestro, Cankovic has not played in a league fixture since March 24, a 2-0 over West Ham United.

"For those of us who have won titles, we know how hard it is so I'm happy to be in the position we're in," Hayes explained in her pre-match press conference. "We've got two tough games but I’m looking forward to enjoying them."

Though we've seen differing success for both outfits over the years, three out of the last four WSL fixtures between these two have been decided by just one goal. Lauren James and Guro Reiten have combined to net four out of the previous eight goals against the North London side. In this same venue as Wednesday, James scored one of the most memorable goals of the season, knifing through essentially the entire Tottenham defense to put her side back in front just prior to the 30'.

After this past weekend, Tottenham will surely be coming out with something to prove. The North Londoners fell convincingly to Lucia Garcia and Manchester United in the FA Cup final on Sunday afternoon 4-0. Led by Chelsea legend Bethany England in the frontline, Spurs failed to register a single shot on target at Wembley. Still, it was a run to be proud of. Five years ago, Tottenham wasn't even in the WSL. Now, in just one season following a ninth-place finish, the Lilywhites made it to a domestic cup final.

England put it perfectly, "It's been a crazy 12 months, we've gone from a relegation battle to an FA Cup final." A lot of the credit for that has to go to Robert Vilahamn who has begun to build something that looks to be sustainable thanks to some incredibly savvy additions in the transfer market. Tottenham has not failed to lock down at least a point in the league since early March. It's one of just two unbeaten WSL outfits to hold an unbeaten record in the last five league matches.

The main orchestrator for Chelsea's Wednesday opponent is the English youngster Grace Clinton, a player who couldn't even compete in the FA Cup final due to it being against her parent club. Securing a permanent deal with the 21-year-old midfielder is at the top of Spurs' list of priorities when the transfer window opens according to numerous reports this week. She is one of three players under the age of 22 (the others being Aggie Beever-Jones and Mary Fowler) with at least seven goal involvements in the English top flight.

The Liverpool native was just called into the next England squad after being named along with Niamh Charles and James as one of the eight nominees for the league's Player of the Season. Only Man United's Geyse has more averaged more successful dribbles per match than Clinton this season.

Keep an eye out for set pieces. Tottenham has struggled mightily defending them this season with Bristol City the only team with a worse set-piece expected goals against. Everton broke through the North Londoners' backline from a corner kick less than two weeks ago to double its lead inside the first 15 minutes. Throw numbers forward early should also be a focus given that six out of the last seven goals Vilahamn's crew has allowed (not counting the FA Cup final) have been inside the first 17 minutes of a contest.

Tottenham Hotspur vs. Chelsea Women predicted starting XI

Goalkeeper: Hannah Hampton
Defenders: Millie Bright, Jess Carter, Niamh Charles, Ashley Lawrence
Midfielders: Erin Cuthbert, Sjoeke Nusken, Melanie Leupolz
Forwards: Guro Reiten, Catarina Macario, Johanna Rytting Kaneryd

Tottenham Hotspur vs. Chelsea Women match info

Date: Wednesday, May 15
Time/Venue: 19:15 BST, 2:15 p.m. EST
TV Broadcast: Paramount+, BBC Two

The West Londoner's final match of the Women's Super League season is at Old Trafford against Manchester United on the 18th of May.