Hall of Fame

Lead partner of the Barclays Women's Super League Hall of Fame

Welcome to the home of the greats

Rachel Yankey

2021

Date of Birth

01/11/1979

Nationality

English

Position

Winger

Rachel Yankey’s career with Arsenal is one that few can rival, having won multiple trophies during her time with the Gunners, which continued into the Barclays Women’s Super League era. Yankey was part of the Arsenal squad that won the first two Barclays Women’s Super League titles in 2011 and 2012, and played a starring role in the 2011 Continental Tyres League Cup Final with a double in a 4-1 win over Birmingham City. The first Barclays WSL campaign saw the Arsenal winger create more chances than any other player. Yankey and her Arsenal side would go onto win the next two League Cup titles in 2012 and 2013. It was in 2013 that the left-winger was recognised for her contribution to football, when she was awarded an OBE. Yankey’s ten goals in the Barclays WSL were all scored with her left-foot. Only current Gunner Katie McCabe has more goals that have all been scored with the same foot (11). Her five years in the Barclays WSL also saw a brief loan spell with Notts County before her retirement at the end of 2016.

Emma Hayes

2021

Date of Birth

18/10/1976

Nationality

English

Position

Head Coach

Emma Hayes started her career in football as a player for Arsenal. Following an injury which ended her playing days early, Hayes began her coaching journey in the USA, as well as a stint as assistant coach at Arsenal, before she moved to Chelsea in 2012. Hayes has played a pivotal role in the growth of the Barclays WSL to the league it is now. Since joining the West London outfit almost ten years ago, Hayes has spearheaded her side to win four Barclays WSL titles, two FA Cups, two League Cups, the Community Shield, the Barclays WSL Spring Series and most recently, led her side to the UEFA Women’s Champions League Final in 2021. 

  Hayes’ achievements were recognised in 2016 when she was awarded an MBE for her Services to Football. The Chelsea head coach cemented her status as one of the most respected coaches in the game after receiving widespread praise for her analysis during Euro 2020 as a member of the commentary team for ITV.

Kelly Smith

2021

Date of Birth

29/10/1978

Nationality

English

Position

Attacking Midfield

Kelly Smith is one of the world's most decorated and respected in the women's game. Widely regarded as one of greatest players to be produced in the country, Smith returned to the Barclays Women’s Super League in 2012 after a spell playing in the United States, but not before she had won multiple trophies with the Gunners before her departure to the US. The move home generated significant interest and Smith didn’t take long to pick up where she left off, by winning the league title and FA Women’s Continental Tyres League Cup in the first season of her return. She would also win the League Cup the following season in 2013. Smith played the final years of her career in the league, and while she suffered with some injuries, her quality and impact on the team was clear for all to see. She did leave her mark with an interesting claim – she currently holds the record as being the oldest player to score a Barclays WSL hat-trick – almost seven years older than the next player.

Katie Chapman

2022

Date of Birth

15/06/1982

Nationality

English

Position

Midfielder

Katie Chapman’s honours are almost unmatched. Playing an integral role in central midfield of every team she played for throughout her career, Chapman has won four Barclays WSL titles, four Women’s FA Cups during the BWSL era, as well as numerous individual awards throughout her career. The midfield maestro began her career at Millwall in 1996, making her debut as a 14-year-old, before spells at Fulham, Charlton Athletic and Arsenal. A stint in America followed, before she returned to begin her Barclays WSL journey back with the Gunners. There she won two league and cup trebles as the north London club dominated the early years of the semi-professional era of the game, winning the Barclays WSL, Women’s FA Cup and FA Women’s Continental Tyres League Cup. In 2014, she moved to Chelsea, where she finished her career with another two league titles in 2015 and 2017/18 (plus the WSL Spring Series in 2017), and two Women’s FA Cups – the second achieved in what was her last match as a professional in 2018. Chapman announced her retirement from the game following the Women’s FA Cup triumph, but has remained very much in the game, working as a pundit for BBC Sport’s coverage of the Barclays WSL.

Fara Williams

2021

Date of Birth

25/01/1984

Nationality

English

Position

Attacking Midfield

Currently England’s most capped player, Fara Williams is known for her incredible long- range strikes and her technical ability in midfield. She has become one of the greatest ever Barclays WSL players and is regarded as one of the finest players to be produced in this country. A consistent goal-scorer and set piece specialist, Williams was awarded an MBE in 2016 and announced her retirement from professional football in April 2021 after a long and illustrious career.

  She began her career at Chelsea before spells at Charlton, Everton, Liverpool, and Arsenal before finishing her Barclays WSL career at Reading. During her career she won the Premier League Cup, The Women’s Cup, and the league title twice in 2013 and 2014 with Liverpool. She won Charlton's Player of the Year and the FA Women's Young Player of the Year in her first season, 2001–02. In 2008–09 Williams' performances saw her voted FA Players' Player of the Year, highlighting the impact she had on other players in the league.

Eniola Aluko

2022

Date of Birth

21/02/1987

Nationality

British-Nigerian

Position

Striker

Eni Aluko’s successes at both club and international level speak for themselves, having been recognised for her achievements both on and off the field. Aluko is a fine example of an individual who took the dual career route during her playing days, earning a degree in Law while continuing to represent both club and country. She began her career at Birmingham City before spells at Charlton Athletic and Chelsea. Like a number of England internationals, a stint in the United States followed just before the formation of the Barclays WSL, before she returned home in 2012 to play for Birmingham. The most successful period in her career came between 2012-2018 when she moved to Chelsea for her second spell at the club. During this time, she won two Barclays WSL titles (plus the WSL Spring Series in 2017), two Women’s FA Cups, and was awarded Chelsea’s Player of the Year in 2014/15. Her form also saw her selected onto the PFA’s Women’s Super League Team of the Year in 2015 and 2017. After announcing her retirement from her playing career in January 2020 after a spell with Juventus, Aluko moved to the United States to take up a Sporting Director Role with Angel City as Sporting Director of Angel City FC. Alongside this role, she has continued as a pundit on ITV and Amazon Prime, working on both the men’s and women’s game.

Karen Carney MBE

2022

Date of Birth

1/08/1987

Nationality

English

Position

Winger

Karen Carney MBE is one of the most widely respected and decorated individuals within the women’s game. ‘The Wizard’ was known for being a creative midfielder and a tricky winger, who was a constant thorn in the opposition’s defence. Her career began at Birmingham City, which was followed by moves to Arsenal and then abroad to America, before she returned to where it all started, to begin her Barclays Women’s Super League journey with Birmingham in 2011. It was here where she started her legendary status at the football club, scoring the winning goal and earning Player of the Match in the 2012 Women’s FA Cup Final, as well as finishing as the league’s top scorer in 2014. She then moved to Chelsea at the end of 2015, where a successful spell saw her win a league and cup double in 2017/18 (plus the WSL Spring Series in 2017). Carney retired in July 2019 following England’s third place finish at the FIFA Women’s World Cup in France. Her role in the game hasn’t stalled, as she now uses her extensive knowledge of the game working as a regular broadcaster for live football on Sky Sports, ITV and Amazon Prime.