Back in the US on her midseason break, Amanda da Costa reflects on Liverpool Ladies' campaign so far, highlights the growing profile of Liverpool at home and also the impact of the World Cup in New York.
With the Women's Super League now breaking up for our midseason recess, it's a good time to reflect on which teams look the greatest threat to our title defence.
The season is well underway with Birmingham City Ladies sitting safely at the top of the League table, I think it's safe to say that they will continue to be a team to keep an eye on for the duration of the season. They have a solid midfield and a tenacity which makes them a difficult team to play against. Our 1-1 draw with them is a good indication of the level they are at this season.
Our Merseyside rivals Everton have also been turning heads this season. Having several big wins and advancing all the way to the FA Cup final this year, their young squad has proven to be a threat to even the best WSL teams.
For Liverpool Ladies, we know there's plenty of room to improve.
Although we have defensively been very strong and difficult to play against so far, there is plenty of room for improvement within our squad.
Having suffered several injuries and changes to our team, we have had a difficult first half of the season trying to adjust and being consistent with our performances.
We are currently unbeaten in the league which still puts us in a favourable position moving forward. We are all hoping that some changes within the squad will give us momentum when we return against Arsenal at the end of the month.
The beginning of a season is always exciting as new faces emerge on the scene and you can quickly work out which players are going to be the ones to watch out for.
Libby Stout, the American goalkeeper for the Liverpool Ladies, is one of those players in my opinion. Although I am a bit biased as she is my teammate and friend, Libby has taken her move across the Atlantic in stride and has anchored our Liverpool squad. Having already registered six clean sheets, Stout’s presence in the WSL this year has to be noted, and I am confident she will continue to do the same work for us in the second half of the season.
I'm writing this column from my home in the US.
As a footballer you always want to be playing matches and improving, but sometimes the best way to improve is to take a step back and have the time to re-assess.
Personally, getting the chance to get back to my family and friends in America for a couple of weeks and get a fresh head for when the season resumes is extremely beneficial for me both on a mental and physical level. It's hard to refer to it as a “break” seeing as the training never fully stops. It is important that while we are all doing separate things, that we are continuing to maintain fitness levels and getting touches on the ball to continue to stay sharp.
Here at home, it's noticeable how the profile of Liverpool is growing.
The popularity for football on both the men’s and women’s side continues to grow throughout America each year. While news of the WSL hasn't exactly hit the US with a bang, it is always fun for me to go home and have the people in my community ask how my season is going. My town back home is very small, and I have been an active member of its football community since I was very young.
Every time I come home, whether it is for a couple of weeks or a couple of months, I always find the time to organize camps for the young players in the area. In the past two years, over 100 different kids have attended the camps, and it continues to grow every time I hold a new one.
The kids always look forward to wearing Liverpool gear that I have brought back from England, and some of them even sport their very own LFC kits to the sessions. It is a work in progress, but the women's game continues to impress each year, and it is exciting to be a part of such a growing trend.
The WSL break will also cue the start of the greatest sporting event in the world - The World Cup!
While the US is still a developing country in terms of the popularity of football, the World Cup is a massive event that most people look forward to. It almost seems as though the football fans all crawl out of the woodwork when the World Cup is on, each demonstrating an insane amount of pride in their respective nations.
The fun part about being back home in New York at a time like this is that it is covered with countless different types of cultures. The World Cup is upon us - which I can certainly tell from all of the different flags being flown outside of bars throughout the city!
Follow Amanda: @ADacosta13.