🏅 OneFootball’s WSL 2023/24 season awards | OneFootball

🏅 OneFootball’s WSL 2023/24 season awards | OneFootball

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Chloe Digby·19 May 2024

🏅 OneFootball’s WSL 2023/24 season awards

Article image:🏅 OneFootball’s WSL 2023/24 season awards

After an incredible and finale to the WSL season, Emma Hayes marked her last game in charge of Chelsea with a title win.

Just before we wrap on 2023/24, it's time to hand out our awards.


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Player of the Season 👏

There could really be only one winner in this category, and that's Manchester City's Khadija "Bunny" Shaw.

Article image:🏅 OneFootball’s WSL 2023/24 season awards

The season ended prematurely through injury for the 27-year-old Jamaica international, but before that she ensured that no player could catch her in the top scorers charts.

Shaw weighed in with 21 goals and three assists in just 18 games for her side, and by mid-January had already bagged three hat-tricks in the league. That put her as joint-top for hat-tricks in the WSL, alongside Arsenal's Viv Miedema.

As Manchester City rose to the top of the table, she became the club's all-time top scorer with 61 goals in just 81 appearances in blue.

Bunny has been a pivotal part of her side's success this season, her clinical finishing ensuring that chances created by City's vibrant attack are converted into goals.

Could the outcome of the title race have been different if she'd stayed fit?


Young Player of the Season 👶

It might seem like Jess Park has been around for ages, but the Manchester City forward is still only 22.

Following a loan spell at Everton last season, she has forced her way into contention for a place in Gareth Taylor's starting XI and has been one of the brightest stars in the WSL this season.

With her versatility in attack, speed and skill, Park is also not afraid to work hard defensively, and her performances have caught the eye of England boss Sarina Wiegman, who praised her in a recent interview for playing with "joy and freedom."

It's already evident that Park is a big-game player too. Two goals and an assist in a 3-1 win for City in the Manchester Derby in front of a record 40,096 crowd at the Etihad Stadium, just showed what she is capable of.

A shout-out here to Chelsea's Aggie Beaver-Jones, who at the tender age of 20 has contributed with 13 goals this season.

We're expecting even bigger and better things next season for Beaver-Jones, but Park just pips her to this award for 2023/24.


Surprise of the Season 🤯

Article image:🏅 OneFootball’s WSL 2023/24 season awards

Last season was Liverpool's first back in the WSL following their promotion from the Championship, and Matt Beard's side finished a respectable seventh in the table with 23 points from 22 games.

Yet the Reds were in no mood just to rest on that achievement, and in 2023/24 they have made huge strides forward, finishing fourth with an outstanding tally of 41 points.

Bringing in Grace Fisk, Sophie Haug and Marie Höbinger last summer was some shrewd business, and with the right players at his disposal, Beard has managed to implement his own style of play on his side.

Liverpool have improved in every metric this season, especially creating chances from set-pieces.

With the news that the club have signed a 10-year lease to play at the 18,000 capacity St. Helens Rugby League stadium from next season, it seems like this team have even more rapid progress planned.


Coach of the Season 👔

Article image:🏅 OneFootball’s WSL 2023/24 season awards

This has been the season of the long, tough goodbye to Chelsea for Emma Hayes, and after the disappointment of losing the Champions League semi-final to Barcelona, she publicly conceded the title to Manchester City.

Yet that statement didn't seem to match what we've seen from Hayes and her 'mentality monsters' over the last 12 years at Chelsea, and she engineered an incredible comeback win away at Bristol City.

That 8-0 victory obliterated Man City's superior goal difference and put Chelsea right back in the title race, taking the competition for top spot right down to a thrilling final day.

The experienced boss didn't show any nerves ahead of the final game showdown, but if there had been any they would've been quickly extinguished as Chelsea raced to a 2-0 lead over Manchester United after just eight minutes.

Her departure will certainly be a loss to the WSL.


Signing of the Season

Chelsea went for proven quality when they signed Sjoeke Nüsken from Eintracht Frankfurt, a player that – although still only 23 – had already represented Germany at all youth levels.

There's no guarantee of how a player will settle in at a new club, in a new country, but Nüsken has been a revelation for Emma Hayes this season.

Netting 11 times in 37 appearances, the Germany international has made herself perfectly at home in West London.


Managerial Change of the Season 🔄

Article image:🏅 OneFootball’s WSL 2023/24 season awards

While Tottenham's biggest achievement is not a domestic one, reaching the FA Cup Final under Robert Vilahamn is a clear sign of progress at the club.

Coming in at the beginning of the campaign, Vilahamn immediately improved results and they finished in sixth place this season with 31 points.

Spurs finished with just 18 points in 2022/23, and it's clear to see that this team is on an upward trajectory.

Wembley heartbreak aside, this has been an excellent season, and proves that Tottenham were correct to make the change.


Biggest Improvement of the Season 📈

Article image:🏅 OneFootball’s WSL 2023/24 season awards

Already named as biggest surprise of the season, Liverpool simply have to be on the receiving end of this award for all of the reasons mentioned above.

Matt Beard's project has been set up for continual progress since day one and that doesn't seem to be stopping any time soon.


Feelgood Story of the Season ❤️

16-year-old Issy Hobson hasn't read the script when she came on as a substitute for Everton late on in their match at home to Arsenal in April.

For the entire game, the Blues had defended resolutely in order to keep Arsenal out and that was an understandable tactic considering that their last WSL point against the Gunners had come back in 2012.

When Alessia Russo finally breached the blue wall in the 80th minute, it seemed like business as usual.

Except for Hobson, that was. The youngster rose up to head the ball home in the fifth minute of stoppage time, becoming the youngest-ever WSL goalscorer and handing Everton that oh-so precious point.

A home grown talent that has supported the club her whole life.

Remember the name...


Goal of the Season 😍

We do have an abundance of Bunny Shaw goals to choose from, and this superb effort versus Liverpool wins the award for the entire WSL this season.

The Jamaica international finds herself in a crowd of Liverpool defenders, and when other players would look to find a team-mate to get out of trouble, Shaw simply continues even when the ball bounces awkwardly and unleashes a rocket of an effort from well outside the box.

A stunning strike.


Game of the Season 🏟

Liverpool 4-3 Chelsea

There's not much that could cause the experienced Emma Hayes to have a meltdown, but this crazy game's twists and turns caused her to concede the title to Manchester City in an emotional post-game interview.

Perhaps she'd thought it was going to be business as usual when Chelsea took the lead in the 9th minute, but the tenacious Liverpool side had other ideas.

This was one for even the neutrals to relish.