Crystal Palace Ladies are set to face their toughest battle yet on Sunday 18th November when a visiting Manchester United Women head to Hayes Lane as the only professional club in the FA Women's Championship.
Casey Stoney's Red Devils have won five of their six matches so far, drawing the other one and currently having a game in hand over top-place Tottenham Hotspur, who they beat two weeks ago.
United opened their campaign with an astonishing 12-0 away victory against Aston Villa, though recently conceded their first goal of the season when playing Tottenham Hotspur Ladies.
Dean Davenport's Eagles, on the other hand, will enter the game having won their first match of the season last month - a 1-0 victory over London Bees - and have been preparing hard for the match with United.
Further, Palace have only lost one of their league matches by a margin greater than one, a game against Durham Women, the only side this season to have played United Women and earned a point.
They also have a goal difference markedly superior to both Millwall Lionesses below them and Aston Villa Ladies above them, with the former on -23 and the latter on -16 while the Palace Ladies currently sit on just -6. All in all, they can take confidence from their close-fought results and bring a solid defensive performance to Hayes Lane this Sunday.
For Palace, defender and captain Freya Holdaway will prove a crucial component in this game as the Eagles will seek to stave off United's powerful attacks. The Northern Ireland international is a determined, experienced skipper and will be looking to maintain an unflinching back-line in the face of any visiting onslaughts.
She was the Palace Ladies Player of the Season for 2017/18 and has been at the club for nearly four years.
A star among the opposition's squad who will be looking to test Holdaway is Lauren James; a bright spark in a strong side and, at just 17-years-old, is someone who is already impressing with the Red Devils.
From United's midfield, James has netted four times this season and is now representing England at Under-17 level, for whom she scored four goals in a 10-0 win over Latvia as captain. In their previous game against Spurs, James scored and assisted Jess Sigsworth, who struck home twice.
Big game elsewhere
Millwall Lionesses face a tough Durham Women side at midday on Sunday. The Lionesses are currently three points behind Palace but would not overtake the Eagles in almost all scenarios due to a gulf separating their goal differences.
Should Durham, who have been victorious for all three of their previous matches, defeat Millwall, Palace will have a chance two hours later to take themselves a point or three further beyond their south London rivals.
Fans can buy tickets for this game on the door. They are £5 for adults and are free for under-16s. For Palace Season Ticket Holders or Members, entry is just £1 on the gate.
If you wish to purchase in advance, you can do so via Paypal and save £1 on the standard gate price. Click here to buy now.
You can see how the Ladies have prepared for this game and their thoughts on it in the video below.