The Women’s Super League returns this weekend after two weeks, but it was no peaceful break. Several Merseyside based players donned their nation’s crests on their chests and battled for a spot in the 2023 Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. While the Welsh and Scots ended the week in heartbreak, it was pure elation for the Irish, who have qualified for their first ever major tournament.

Scotland 0-1 Republic of Ireland

It’s clear that Republic of Ireland’s national team have come a long way having booked their tickets to the World Cup for the first time, just five years after the team threatened to go on strike and demanding for better treatment.

Megan Campbell and Liverpool skipper, Niamh Fahey carried the torch for The Reds while Courtney Brosnan represented The Toffees. Another Evertonian, Lucy Graham came on as a substitute for Scotland in the second half.

Fahey was shown a yellow card for a handball in the box. Martha Thomas’s shot struck her flailing hand and despite protests, the referee pointed to the spot. Waving her hands around to distract Caroline Weir did the trick as the Everton keeper dived to her left and parried the ball away.

Campbell’s notorious long throw-ins often cause problems for WSL teams and it was no different for Scotland. One throw in particular had extra zest as it somehow ended up in the back of the net. As expected, the goal was disallowed as it did not touch another player on its way in.

Campbell, Fahey and Leanne Kiernan, who was forced to watch the game from home due to injury, have Barrett to thank as the players embraced at the end of extra time. The Donegal born forward scored with 20 minutes to go before celebrating in tribute to the victims of the Creeslough tragedy. The party was cut short though as the Girls in Green became embroiled in controversy. Videos of the team singing Celtic Symphony, which included an alleged pro IRA chant circulated online. They have since issued a public apology and UEFA are investigating the issue.

Switzerland 2-1 Wales

In Zurich’s Stadion Letzigrund, Wales were also on the brink of an historic night hoping to secure a place in their first ever World Cup. Ceri Holland and Rhiannon Roberts were the only Merseyside players involved but they will not be returning to Prenton Park in high spirits.

Roberts scored a rare goal for in the 18th minute but it would end up being the only one for the Gemma Grainger’s side. In a scramble for the ball after a corner taken by Jess Fishlock, the ball fell perfectly for the defender’s volley.

The lead was short-lived when Ramona Bachmann equalized just before half time. Just like in Glasgow, the game went to extra time and it was Fabienne Humm who broke the hearts of the Welsh at the death, scoring the winner in the 121st minute.

They return to club action this Sunday, with Everton taking on Chelsea at home while Liverpool travel down south to face Tottenham.