WHEN it comes to football, this weekend could really be one to remember for the city of Swansea – and not just because of what might happen underneath the arch at Wembley.

For while Steve Cooper’s side chase Championship play-off final glory against Brentford today, another big game involving Swansea City Ladies takes place closer to home tomorrow.

Colin Staples’ team must avoid defeat to Abergavenny in Llandarcy to secure back-to-back Orchard Welsh Premier Women’s League titles and complete a league and cup double.

As well as helping them overtake Cardiff Met and book a place in next season’s Champions League, a win or draw would also see Staples’ women finish the campaign unbeaten.

Staples took over from Ian Owen last August, just before the side’s Champions League loss to full-time Cypriot outfit Apollon.

A point or more tomorrow afternoon (kick-off 2pm) and another crack at European football’s biggest club prize is theirs.

Staples, who has worked in the men’s and women’s football during a long coaching career, has paid tribute to his players for what they have done this season.

“I’ve been lucky enough to work in different environments, and this, for me, at the mature age of 63, is pretty high up there and something I will cherish,” he said. “But it’s not for me, it’s about the players.

“There are plenty of characters in this squad, they are great to work with, and they’re always challenging, not just accepting.

“They question you and always want to know what’s happening. They’re not afraid to voice their opinions and I respect that.

“Swansea are one of the leading lights in women’s football in Wales and they have all this success while working as teachers and nurses.”

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He added: “We’ve got a great record this season of played 15, won 14 and drawn one, and we’ve only conceded one goal in the league.

“Cardiff Met are our closest rivals and they are currently top of the table on goals scored, but their season has finished.

“We need to get at least a point against Abergavenny and then we will be champions.

“It will be a tough game for us but we are going to go out and do everything we can to win.”

Swansea completed the first half of a potential double by beating Cardiff City 4-1 to lift the Welsh Premier Women’s League Cup in midweek.

Phoebie Poole gave Cardiff the lead, before Swansea came storming back.

Tija Richardson struck from close range to level, and then Katy Hosford and Stacey John-Davis’ brace made it safe in the second half.

Victory tomorrow and Swansea will again get to experience Champions League football, which is where Staples started when he took over as boss from Owen, who is now general manager.

“It was an unusual situation when I came to the club because the incumbent manager invited me in to take the reins,” added Staples.

“I didn’t just get rid of everybody, I started working with the same staff but in different capacities.

“Ian, who was the manager, is now the general manager, and I always have him on the bench for his experience.

“I came in with my own ideas and they seem to be working.

“I’ve always been able to get on with the coaching and I’ve got a great assistant in Chris Church.

“All I do is organise the training sessions, the work of the team behind the team has been phenomenal.”

He continued: “My first game in charge was in the Champions League.

“We played Apollon in Cyprus and lost 3-0 but the players did everyone proud against a full-time team.

“It would be great if we could win this weekend and have another go at the Champions League because it can only be good for the players.”

Staples worked with the original Swansea Ladies in the South West Counties League prior to the formation of Swansea City Ladies in 2002.

He also had spells with Welsh Premier Women’s League outfit Port Talbot and Yeovil Town in the Women’s Super League, as well as being head coach of the Wales U17 and U19 ladies’ squads.

In the men’s game, the lifelong Swans fan was head coach at Carmarthen Town when the club first played in Europe in 2001.

After finishing at Yeovil, Staples, who has also worked for the FAW Trust, started his own football consultancy business.