Coach’s ‘important’ comments top off another extraordinary week in the rise of Mary Fowler: Tillies Tracker

Sam Kerr started her first game of the WSL season and the Matildas captain scored for Chelsea.

From the Women’s Super League to the National Women’s Soccer League and the Damallsvenskan. KEEPUP has you covered with all the Australian women’s football action beyond the A-Leagues.

Manchester City seeing the real Mary Fowler

Before the start of this season, Mary Fowler had never started a Women’s Super League game for Manchester City.

In her debut campaign, the Matildas star made 11 WSL appearances and they were all as a substitute.

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However this season, Fowler has started all three of City’s WSL matches to help the 2016 champions to the top of the table on goal difference.

On Sunday, she provided two assists in a 5-0 rout of Bristol City in which she started alongside fellow Australia international Alanna Kennedy, earning high praise from her head coach Gareth Taylor.

“I mentioned last season that this season will be important for Mary to feel her way into the club – and now we’re starting to see the player that we all thought we’d see,” he said.

“Her confidence is high and I’m picking her every game now.

“Mary’s just a really talented player. She’s very good at one on one situations, her ability to go outside, inside, both feet makes her a dream to work with. And she’s very coachable, really willing to learn.”

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Fowler – in the Matildas squad for the upcoming 2024 Olympic Games qualifiers against Iran (26 October), the Philippines (29 October) and Chinese Taipei (1 November) – was the provider for Khadija Shaw’s 38th-minute header – her pinpoint cross picking out the Jamaican star.

Then on the other wing, she produced another delightful delivery to find Jill Rood in the second minute of first-half stoppage time.

“She’s got goals in her, that’s got to be the main thing we’re really looking to Mary for,” Taylor said.

“With the likes of Bunny (Shaw) and Jill Roord, it looks like it could be a healthy competition for top scorer – and Mary’s capable of being up there as well.”

Those comments top off a rather extraordinary week for Fowler, who was nominated for not one but two major awards; the 2023 European Golden Girl award and the 2022 AFC Young Women’s Player of the Year.

Elsewhere in the WSL, Sam Kerr made her first start of the Women’s Super League season and the Matildas superstar opened the scoring in Chelsea’s 2-0 win over West Ham.

The calf injury that plagued her FIFA Women’s World Cup on home soil delayed Kerr’s start to the 2023-24 WSL campaign as she worked her way back to full fitness.

On Sunday (AEDT), the A-Leagues legend was back in the starting XI and back on the scoresheet for the defending champions after scoring against Matildas teammate and West Ham captain Mackenzie Arnold.

Read more here.

Matildas pair Steph Catley and Caitlin Foord both started as Arsenal dramatically scored in the 92nd and 94th minutes to stun Aston Villa 2-1 on Monday (AEDT). Kyra Cooney-Cross was an unused substitute.

Clare Wheeler came off the bench for Everton, who upstaged Liverpool 1-0 in the Merseyside Derby. Teagan Micah was an unused substitute for Liverpool.

Charlie Rule – in the Matildas squad as a train-on player – started for Brighton and Hove Albion in their 3-1 loss to Tottenham, while Mackenzie Hawkesby was on the bench.

Another piece of silverware for a Matilda

Emily van Egmond and San Diego Wave were crowned National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) Shield winners on Monday (AEDT).

The Wave – with Matildas midfielder Van Egmond in the starting XI – were 2-0 winners over Racing Louisville in front of more than 30,000 fans to clinch the NWSL Shield and top spot heading into the play-offs.

The Shield is awarded to the team with the best regular-season record in the league and San Diego finished two points clear of Portland Thorns.

It is a remarkable feat for expansion franchise Wave, who only entered the NWSL last season.

For Van Egmond, it means more silverware.

Her first title in the NWSL, the 2014 Julie Dolan Medallist has also won an A-League Women Premiership-Championship double with Melbourne City, plus the Bundesliga and DFB-Pokal with Wolfsburg previously.

San Diego will face Angel City FC or OL Reign in the semi-finals on November 5 (November 6 AEDT).

Amy Sayer’s drought is over!

Amy Sayer is in the Matildas’ squad to face Iran, Philippines and Chinese Taipei.

To cap her call-up, having missed the FIFA Women’s World Cup, the 21-year-old scored in Kristianstads’ 2-0 win over KIF Orebro in Sweden’s Damallsvenskan.

The six-time Australia international sealed the win with a goal of her own in the 88th minute, snapping a long-standing drought.

Having spent time playing college football between 2020 and 2023, Sayer’s goal for Kristianstads was her first top-flight strike since November 2018.

At the time she was playing for Sydney FC in the Liberty A-League.

Elsewhere in Sweden’s first division, Aivi Luik’s BK Hacken solidified top spot with a 4-0 rout of relegation-threatened IF Brommapojkarna.

Clare Polkinghorne and Charlotte Grant‘s Vittsjo were beaten 1-0 by Pitea in the absence of fellow Matilda Katrina Gorry.

In Spain’s Liga F, Hayley Raso started Real Madrid’s 5-2 demolition of Granada.

Real Madrid boast a perfect record after five rounds to be level on points with league-leading rivals Barcelona, but adrift on goal difference.

Ellie Carpenter’s reigning Division 1 Feminine champions Lyon crushed St-Etienne 6-0 to preserve their 100% record through four matches.

Clare Hunt made her debut for Paris Saint-Germain in the UEFA Women’s Champions League but she was not in the squad over the weekend, though the league game was postponed due to fireworks on the field.

In Mexico’s Liga MX Femenil, Alex Chidiac was an unused substitute for table-topping Tigres UANL in their 1-0 triumph at Atletico San Luis.