The German Women's Bundesliga may still be in winter recess, but the season has already entered its decisive phase in Australia, where Brisbane Roar set up a W-League final clash with Canberra United following a dramatic penalty shoot-out victory against Sydney FC in the semis. Meanwhile in France, the title race continues apace between Olympique Lyon and FCF Juvisy.
Australia: Pure excitement in Brisbane
Canberra United became the first team to reach the final of this season's W-League on Saturday with a narrow 1-0 victory over Melbourne Victory at McKellar Park. Prolific striker Michelle Heyman struck in the 83rd minute to ensure Jitka Klimkova's side their place in the decider.
Joining them in the final will be Brisbane Roar, who had to come from behind in their semi-final after Renee Rollason had put FC Sydney ahead in the 18th minute. Emily Gielnik netted an injury-time equaliser to take the tie to extra time, and though both sides created opportunities throughout the additional period, a fine array of stops from goalkeepers Casey Dumont and Allison Lipsher forced the match to penalties. While Brooke Spence, Tameka Butt, Aivi Luik and Kim Carroll all dispatched their spot-kicks for Brisbane, Teresa Polias and Estelle Johnson missed theirs for Sydney to send the Roar through 4-3 in the shoot-out.
The final: Canberra United - Brisbane Roar, 28 January (McKellar Park, Canberra)
France: Favourites march on
The New Year brought about no change at the top of France's Division 1 Feminin, with leaders Olympique Lyon resuming their prolific form and Juvisy staying in hot pursuit. Lyon beat EA Guingamp 7-0, with Lara Dickenmann, Camille Abily, Eugenie Le Sommer (2), Lotta Schelin, Sandrine Bretigny and Amandine Henry among the goals. Patrice Lair's side have netted 82 goals in 15 matches so far this season, an average of 5.46 per game.
For their part, Juvisy overcame AS Saint-Etienne 1-0 but with only 43 scored so far, have a considerably inferior goal difference to their title rivals.
In the battle raging below, Paris Saint-Germain and Montpellier HSC swapped places once again in third and fourth. While Montpellier won their fixture 3-1 against FC Vendenheim, Paris Saint-Germain were held to a 1-1 draw by Rodez AF.
Top three: Olympique Lyon (54), FCF Juvisy (53), Montpellier HSC (48)
Italy: Sassari Torres take over at the top
A 3-0 victory over Calcio Como 2000 was enough to take Sassari Torres CF to the top of Italy's Serie A. ASD Bardolino Verona remained unbeaten with a 2-1 win against Lazio, but their inferior goal difference keeps them in second. Both sides have scored 29 goals so far, but Sassari Torres have conceded five to Bardolino's seven.
Two further teams remain in contention for the title, with Brescia Femminile emphatically holding onto third spot with a 5-1 success against CF Venezia 1984, and fourth-placed UPC Tavagnacco routing bottom club GC Rom CF 6-1 to extend their lead over fifth-placed Turin Calcio to six points.
Top three: Sassari Torres CF (28), ASD Bardolino (28), ACF Brescia Femminile (26)
Spain: No change at the top
Barcelona maintained their imperious form at the top of the Superliga de Futbol Femenino, extending their unbeaten league run to 18 games this season and racking up their 17th victory with a 4-1 success against UD Collerense. Second-placed Athletic Club Bilbao kept their hopes alive with a 5-1 win against UE L'Estartit and remain poised in the event of a slip-up by the leaders.
At the other end of the table, FVPR El Olivo went down 7-0 against CE Sant Gabriel, dropping to the bottom of the standings as a result. Reocin Racing moved above them courtesy of a 3-1 win over Prainsa Zaragoza.
Top three: Barcelona (52), Athletic Club Bilbao (49), RCD Espanyol de Barcelona (45)