With our platform we have a lot of power to influence people around us, so therefore linking up with a charity like BSWA is a really good thing to do.Aoife Mannion
As Arsenal don’t play until 2pm, and themselves face tough opposition in Reading, Blues will be searching for all three points to continue their excellent start to the season.
Aside from the football, Blues Women will be celebrating their charity partnership with Birmingham and Solihull Women’s Aid.
October is National Domestic Awareness Month and Blues Women are raising awareness for charity partners BSWA at the match.
The team will warm up in BSWA shirts and there will be a bucket collection inside and outside the ground. In addition, at the turnstiles there will be a food donation drop-off point where you can donate tea, biscuits, rice and beans to name just a few.
Club ambassador Aoife Mannion said: “I think it’s a really worthy cause and a worthy charity of our time, awareness and even of our money as well. I think the charity does incredible work to support really vulnerable women and its really important for us to raise awareness and begin to break down the stigma around talking about domestic violence. One of the stats that I’ve heard is 1 in 4 women at some point in their life suffers from domestic violence, so, the chances are everyone knows someone that has been affected by this and that’s what I think makes it such a worthy cause and charity.
“With our sport being professional it’s therefore in the public eye. We get lots of people down to our games and that’s why with our platform we have a lot of power to influence people around us, so therefore linking up with a charity like Birmingham and Solihull Women’s Aid (BSWA) is a really good thing to do.
“My role along with Hayley as an ambassador for the charity is to represent the players. So, I’ve been down to one of the refuge's with Hayley. We’ve been on two occasions and I’ve also been to their headquarters and their call centre to find out ways that we can help raise awareness. And that’s why the game on Sunday is so important. We have to find out, by having conversations with them, the best way to raise awareness and the best way to support them. Likewise it’s really important for us to learn. It’s really important for the players to learn more about the charity so when we’re asked about it, we actually know what we’re talking about.”
Coming off the back of a 1-0 victory away from home against Bristol City, Blues Women will be in high spirits as they face current FA Women's Super League champions Chelsea.
Manager Marc Skinner said: “I think it will be a difficult game. Chelsea are coming off the back of a result in the league where it looks like it’s a slaughtering, but actually when you watch it back it shouldn’t have been a 5-0 game. So I think it will be an even game and it will be the key moments that matter. We’ve got to find a way to win, although it will be a different challenge to Bristol.
“This team will come in trying to beat us. I’m sure that’s what will be in their minds. It will be a battle of two teams, with two different styles. Chelsea have a counter-attacking ability and we must nullify those aspects but then also impose our game on them. If we can do that then it will be a very intriguing game for everybody to watch. I think we’re really looking forward to the challenge of it.”
Tickets for the game are available at just £8 for adults/£5 concessions on the gate and a discounted rate of £7 adults and £4 concessions in advance online.