WSL Merseyside derby: 'We're inspiring the next generation,' says Liverpool forward Leanne Kiernan

“You see girls from the age of two with jerseys with our names on the back.”
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Liverpool head across town to face neighbours Everton in the Women's Super League Merseyside derby at Goodison Park on Sunday (1pm) and will be hoping to break the Toffees' strangle-hold on the fixture.

The Reds have won just once in their past seven WSL meetings but Everton have endured a tough, injury-hit season and currently sit four places below Liverpool, who are fifth in the table. It will be the teams' third meeting this season. Everton won 1-0 at Anfield in the WSL in October and the Reds claimed a 2-1 revenge win in the Continental League Cup in December.

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The match is also a flagship fixture in the Women's Football Weekend, which celebrates the elite level of the sport in England. Since its introduction in the 2019/20 season, Women's Football Weekend has seen record attendance across the women's game.

Speaking ahead of the derby, Liverpool forward Leanne Kiernan told LiverpoolWorld: "Growing up, I always looked up to male players, and I thought, I want to be like them. Where now you see girls from the age of two, three onwards with jerseys with our names on the back which is really exciting that they're coming to watch us, week in week out and they're inspired by us. I feel like it's really nice to see that they have role models, and they have the opportunity to see where women's football is going."

Liverpool Ladies player Leanne KiernanLiverpool Ladies player Leanne Kiernan
Liverpool Ladies player Leanne Kiernan

Everton's American goalkeeper Courtney Brosnan told LiverpoolWorld: "In my time here in the WSL each year, it's progressively gotten better and better. The interest has always been there to see the women's game, but I think it's just continuing to grow. To have these games at the men's stadium and see us pack out the stadiums and get bigger attendance is really important for us. So, it's great that we're continuing to do that."

On the same weekend last year, Everton achieved their highest-ever home crowd as 22,161 fans gathered to watch the Merseyside derby. With this set to be the club's final season at the stadium, this is one of the last chances to see Everton Women in action at the Blues' 132-year-old home.

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