England’s Lionesses finished the year on a winning note – and an undefeated run of ten games – as they beat the Netherlands 1-0 in Tilburg.
Arsenal’s Jodie Taylor, back in action after missing most of 2016 through injury, scored with a goalpoacher’s finish late in the second-half to ensure that England go into 2017 on a high.
Her club team-mate Jordan Nobbs was also celebrating, having been named Vauxhall England Player of the Year at the FA Women’s Football Awards in November, with Chelsea’s Millie Bright winning the Young Player Award.
The Blues had other reasons to be cheerful, though – manager Emma Hayes picked up her MBE for services to football from the Queen this week.
While the Women’s Super League is on its winter hiatus, the lower divisions are playing through – and the first round proper of the Women’s FA Cup was full of excitement.
FA WPL Manager of the Month Karen Hills celebrated her award by guiding her Tottenham Hotspur side to a narrow 1-0 win over Leyton Orient, table-toppers of the London and South-East Regional Women’s Football League Premier Division.
Elsewhere, Liverpool Marshall Feds pulled off a shock against WPL side Stoke City, beating them 4-2 on penalties; and Charlton Athletic Women beat Crystal Palace 2-1 at Selhurst Park in the south-east London derby.
*Carrie Dunn is SHOOT’s Women’s Football correspondent. Her book ‘The Roar of the Lionesses: Women’s Football in England’ is out now – available in all good bookshops.*