football

Women's Super League title race: Chelsea in driving seat ahead of final-day showdown with Man City

Chelsea edged ahead of Man City ahead of the WSL's final day - but the title is still up for grabs on Saturday as Emma Hayes bids for a fifth successive league win before she departs for the USA.

And, on the face of it, everyone is relaxed and relishing the tightest WSL deciding day in a decade. Behind the scenes at Chelsea and Man City, it's a far more complicated picture.

For Chelsea, this isn't just any game. It's the final match for legendary head coach Hayes and the last chance to send her to the States with a trophy.

Captain Millie Bright has already spoken about missing so much of her boss' last dance through injury. There's massive desire at the club not to let her reign of domination end in disappointment.

At one time we were talking about a potential quadruple for Chelsea - now it's WSL or nothing.

Hayes hasn't just coached up an array of individuals into international stars, she's instilled a belief and determination unmatched by many others. This club isn't used to a bare trophy cabinet and doesn't want to experience that now.

Man City have had their time to grieve after throwing away the chance to be in control of their own WSL destiny.

Now it comes down to an old-fashioned shootout. Beat Aston Villa by three more goals than Chelsea can manage at Old Trafford and the eight-year drought is over.

And it is not only Hayes who departs the WSL this weekend, another inspirational figure also leaves the league on Saturday too.

Steph Houghton's final game as a pro is a chance to walk off into the sunset with the WSL trophy tucked under her arm.

She finished her penultimate training session as a Man City player on Thursday practising her trademark free-kicks from outside the box.

Man City are going to need goals on Saturday. It would be a comic book ending if their' Captain Fantastic' gets in on the scoring action and leads her team to glory one last time.

Chelsea and City are level on 52 points after the Blues' 1-0 win at Tottenham on Wednesday, but Hayes' side have a +47 goal difference, while City have +45, meaning the champions are currently top.

They will win the WSL if they beat Manchester United at Old Trafford on Saturday - live on Sky Sports - and maintain their goal-difference advantage over City, who travel to Aston Villa.

If Chelsea and City finish level on points and goal difference, the title will be decided by goals scored. Chelsea currently have 65 compared to City's 59.

However, if Chelsea draw at United, a City win at Villa will hand Gareth Taylor's side the title.

If Chelsea lose at Old Trafford, City just have to avoid defeat to Villa to win the league.

Position: 1st
Points: 52
Goal difference: +47
Games remaining: 1

May 18: Man Utd vs Chelsea, kick-off 3pm, live on Sky Sports

Position: 2nd
Points: 52
Goal difference: +45
Games remaining: 1

May 18: Aston Villa vs Man City, kick-off 3pm

Watch Man Utd vs Chelsea live on Sky Sports Premier League and Main Event from 2pm; kick-off 3pm. You can also stream the game with NOW.

You can follow the twists and turns from every WSL game across Sky Sports' digital platforms with our dedicated live blogs, including in-game clips and free match highlights from Old Trafford.

We will also have analysis and insight from an enthralling final day, as well as free match highlights from every WSL game later on Saturday.

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