Women’s Football Show moves to BBC Three

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The Women’s Football Show returns to BBC TV ahead of the 2014 FA WSL season on a new channel and in a new regular time slot.

Launched last year in response to surge of interest in the women’s game following London 2012, the series will now be shown at the earlier time of 7.00pm on Monday evenings on BBC Three, switching from its post-Newsnight slot on BBC Two.

Jacqui Oatley returns to present eight editions of the show throughout the year, which will feature a mix of regular match highlights from the new two-division FA WSL, plus contributions in the studio with regular big-name guests and familiar names in the world of women’s football.

On the first show, Oatley is joined by new England Women’s head coach Mark Sampson and last season’s Player’s Player of the Year, Natasha Dowie.

Meanwhile, former England internationals and regular BBC pundits Sue Smith and Faye White take on new roles in the show to bring analysis and insight to the women’s game.

The new viewer-friendly time slot for the show on BBC Three should help to raise the profile of the game among the channel’s younger target audience, while the show will also be available to watch at any time via BBC iPlayer for up to seven days after transmission.

The Women’s Football Show is part of BBC Sport’s comprehensive coverage of the sport throughout the 2014-15 season across TV, radio and online.

England’s FIFA Women’s World Cup 2015 qualifying matches continue this year with all matches live on BBC TV, updates on Radio 5 live and live streaming via the BBC Sport website.

On Saturday, April 5, England face Montenegro starting at 12.45pm on BBC Two, before facing Ukraine on Thursday 8 May, live on BBC Three.

Further live women’s football comes in June as BBC Two screens live coverage of the FA Women’s Cup final on Sunday, June 1.

In addition, the Football Association and the BBC have agreed a new exclusive national deal making 5 live sports extra the home of live women’s football commentaries on radio for 2014, reinforcing the corporation’s ongoing commitment to women’s sport.

Starting on Wednesday 16 April, ‘5 live: Women’s Super League’ will bring build-up and live commentary from at least 16 games during the season on 5 live sports extra with some coverage on Radio 5 live.

Current WSL players will join the commentary team using their expertise to bring a unique awareness and knowledge of the game.

Extensive access to clubs, alongside interviews with players and coaches will ensure audiences are given an exclusive insight into what is set to be the most thrilling WSL to date.

The first WSL show will bring live action from Meadow Lane Stadium as Rick Passmoor’s Notts County take on Shelley Kerr’s Arsenal.

Other games confirmed include title holders Liverpool taking on Everton on April 30 before they face the newest recruits to WSL, Manchester City on the May 14.

With the 2013 Women’s Euros on BBC TV reaching audiences of 9.9m, the corporation#s ever expanding content across TV, radio and online, including a new 5 live Sports Extra programme, reaffirms the BBC’s dedication to women’s football to a keen audience.

Controller of BBC Radio 5 live, Jonathan Wall, said: “I’m delighted that 5 live sports extra is able to bring even more coverage of women’s football to the BBC through this new partnership.

“The 2014 FA Women’s Super League season is set to be the best yet and strengthens the impressive line up of live sport we already have on sports extra.”

Kelly Simmons, Director of the National Game and Women’s Football at the FA, said: “We are delighted with our partnership with the BBC to showcase top level women’s football across all their platforms.

“Our fans, along with newcomers to the game, will enjoy unprecedented levels of women’s football coverage in what is a very exciting year ahead.

“We’ve set out a plan with our partners to develop high quality semi-professional women’s football in England and the partnership with the BBC is instrumental in helping us deliver on our ambition.”

The BBC Sport website will also have a twice weekly goals round-up video throughout the WSL season from mid-April with regular match reports, online goal highlights, news and team-by-team previews features.

The 2014 FA WSL season kicks off in April with 2013 champions Liverpool beginning their title defence when they take on newcomers Manchester City in the first televised game of the new season.

BT Sport, the WSL’s live broadcast partner, will show the opening week’s standout fixture live on Thursday, April 17, on BT Sport 1, with coverage starting at 7.30pm.

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