Cardiff City Women celebrate

Cardiff City FC Women | 23/24 Season in Review

It’s been a fantastic 2023/24 campaign for City Women, who made history by completing a domestic treble for the first time in the team’s history. 

Performances of a consistently high standard earned the Bluebirds the Adran Premier title for the second consecutive season. 

When challenged on the biggest, highest-pressure occasions, the side simply didn’t falter, winning the Bute Energy Welsh Cup and the Adran Trophy, the latter for the first time.

We take look back at the many positives of the 2023/24 campaign.

Ffion Price vs. Shelbourne

The season began with competing in the UEFA Women’s Champions League, which the Bluebirds had not done since 2013.

Facing Lithuanian champions FC Gintra and Irish league winners Shelbourne, City faced two tough sides in Šiauliai.

Iain Darbyshire’s side gained invaluable learning experience in both defeats, which can be called upon this summer, when the Bluebirds return to European competition with the aim of improvement.

The City head coach said: “The Champions League was a great experience for the squad and we’ve worked very hard in recent years to get to play on that stage. It was new for all of us and we learned a lot as a group about the level that we need to reach to compete at that European level. It was a great step in our development as a Club.”

Ffion Price and Hannah Power celebrate at the full-time whistle

Much like last season’s success, the Bluebirds’ league title win was a tale of consistency and a desire to maintain high standards. 

City won 17 of their 20 fixtures, claiming important victories at Swansea City and Wrexham in Phase One, which provided a platform heading into the final six games, following the split. 

With key players such as Eliza Collie, Molly Kehoe and Rhianne Oakley returning from injury at the perfect time, the Bluebirds charged towards the title in Phase Two. 

Top spot was secured with a 4-0 win over Swansea City at Cardiff International Sports Campus, before culminating the league season with a 5-1 victory over Wrexham, lifting the Adran Premier trophy at Cardiff City Stadium.

Reflecting on the title win, wing-back Ffion Price said: To win the title was fantastic for us as a group. I think a lot of people don’t see the hard work that goes in for people with their jobs. The togetherness in the squad is fantastic and credit to all the girls, everyone put their shift in and we got what we fully deserved.”

Emma Beynon

The final two games of the season saw the Bluebirds compete in the Adran Trophy and Bute Energy Welsh Cup Finals. 

City had fallen at the final hurdle in both of the last two seasons in the Adran Trophy, which brought added pressure, along with going 1-0 down to Swansea City at the SDM Glass Stadium. 

A clinical second-half performance which was full of character led to a 5-1 victory, emphatically winning the competition for the very first time. 

Wrexham were the opponents in the Bute Energy Welsh Cup Final at Rodney Parade, providing another stern test. 

Winger Oakley, who finished the season with seven goals from the last eight games, continued her purple patch with an important strike. 

But it was midfielder Emma Beynon who took centre stage, ensuring the victory with a brilliant strike from distance. 

After the full-time whistle, Emma said: “It’s unbelievable. It’s what we set out for at the start of the season and to have actually won the treble is a brilliant feeling. I haven’t scored many this season, so to score a goal like that in the Final is amazing.”

Eliza Collie celebrates scoring for Cardiff City

A big part of City’s success this season has been the form of attacker Collie. 

The attacker has taken on a big responsibility this campaign as the Bluebirds’ starting striker, but has stepped up to the role admirably. 

Eliza has netted a remarkable 31 goals in all competitions this season, including netting a hat-trick on four occasions. 

The 19-year-old was acknowledged for her performances, as she was named our Young Player of the Season. 

"I'm very pleased and extremely grateful to win the award, Eliza said. "It's a brilliant feeling knowing that all my hard work has paid off. It's been a great season for me personally and I'm really glad to be able to contribute to the team with goals."

Madison Lloyd in action for Cardiff City Women

As well as the success at Senior level, it’s also been a huge year of progress for our U19s squad. 

No less than eight players have made Senior debuts this season and have all made an impression in Darbyshire’s side. 

Madison Lloyd, Demi Parry, Mali Ackerman, Marnie Gingell, Quianna Wheeler, Grace Evans, Brooke Arthur and Grace Phillips have all featured at Senior level.

The U19s also entered the Hugh James SWFA Women’s Cup in order to gain experience of the physical demands of the Women’s game. 

Noah Bushby’s side performed brilliantly in the competition, defeating Cascade YC Women in a penalty shootout in the Final.  

Having made progress at U19 level, there is a platform in place for further Senior experience next season.