The Barclays FA Women’s Super League is quickly becoming one of the most multi-national and diverse competitions in world football with more and more international stars wanting to test themselves in the English game.
Just how multi-national is the Barclays FA Women’s Super League and how does is compare to the other major European leagues?
FA Women’s Super League Full-Time have compared the Barclays FA Women’s Super League to the French Division 1 Feminine and the German FLYERALARM Frauen-Bundesliga and here are our findings.
The Barclays FA Women’s Super League ranks in the middle in terms of the number of overseas players playing their football in the competition. There are currently 89 overseas players playing in England compared to 80 in the FLYERALARM Frauen-Bundesliga and 98 playing their football in France.
Many would expect Emma Hayes’ Chelsea side or maybe Manchester City to have the most multi-national squad but this isn’t the case. The West Ham United squad currently boasts the most overseas nationalities with 10 while Chelsea and Everton and the next most multi-national with seven different nationalities. At the other end of the scale, the Republic of Ireland’s Harriet Scott is the only non-British player on the books at Birmingham City.
In total, there are less different nationalities on show in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League than in both Germany and France. Excluding players from Scotland and Wales, there are just 20 non-British nationalities in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League compared to 25 in Germany and 33 in France.
Overseas players have enjoyed 20,268 minutes of Barclays FA Women’s Super League football so far this season. That equates to 42.47% of overall game time in the competition. Despite having a smaller range of nationalities in the league and less overseas players in total than the French top flight, the Barclays FA Women’s Super League has offered the greatest percentage of game time to overseas players of any of the top three European leagues. While overseas players in the French Division 1 Feminine have accounted for 29,748 minutes of football this season, the percentage of game time given to overseas imports (41.78%) is 0.69% less than in England whereas the German league has given just 31.35% of their minutes to overseas players, accounting to 26,047 minutes played in total.
In summary, whilst the Barclays FA Women’s Super League is attracting players from many different nations, there is still a little way to go to become as multi-national as the French league and to a degree, the German FLYERALARM Frauen-Bundesliga. What the English offers is a greater opportunity for overseas players to flourish with the Barclays FA Women’s Super League fielding non-British players for a greater percentage of minutes than their rivals leagues.