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Women's Football News
Liverpool maintained their excellent start to the FA WSL 1 Spring Series with a 4-0 victory over Sunderland, which has seen them open up a lead of six points at the top of the table.
Melanie Reay's side had gone into the game having not conceded a goal in any of their opening three matches but ten minutes into the game, Liverpool made a breakthrough via a superb 30-yard strike from in-form midfielder Caroline Weir. Another ten minutes elapsed before Natasha Harding doubled the Reds' lead with her fourth goal of the season. Sunderland almost pulled a goal back early in the second half when Madeleine Hill hit the woodwork but just before the hour mark, Weir netted her second to put Liverpool firmly in control of the game. Casey Stoney rounded off the scoring late on when she netted her first goal for the club from close range.
Chelsea move back into second place in the table after a late equaliser pegged them back to a 2-2 draw against Arsenal, who preserved their own unbeaten record. The Gunners took a first half lead after Danielle Carter was brought down in the area by Chelsea goalkeeper Carly Telford, who then saved the resulting penalty by Jodie Taylor, with the England striker slotting home the rebound. Arsenal remained in front until midway through the second half, when they were unable to clear a free kick from Hannah Blundell and Millie Bright was on hand to head home from close range. Jordan Nobbs almost restored Arsenal's lead with an audacious 35-yard lob which came back off the bar, but as the game went into injury time, Chelsea looked to have snatched their third straight victory when Crystal Dunn set up Drew Spence to score. However, Arsenal were not finished, and made sure of their third draw in four matches when Nobbs diverted a Carter shot home.
Reading FC Women ended a run of three defeats by winning 1-0 against Yeovil Town at Taunton. The Royals made a fast start to the game and took the lead with seven minutes on the clock, a Jo Potter corner being headed on by Rachel Furness for Mandy van den Berg to turn home from close range. Kirsty McGee twice went close to putting them further ahead with close range headers and Yeovil goalkeeper Megan Walsh was in good form to help keep her side in the match. Yeovil came into the game more as an attacking force after the break but could not really trouble a Reading side which kept its first clean sheet of the season and condemned Yeovil to their fifth reverse on the trot.
Birmingham City were able to ease some of the disappointment of their SSE Women's FA Cup Final defeat by recording their first win of the Spting Series, 2-0 against Bristol City. Both teams had chances in the opening stages of the contest, including an excellent point blank save by Blues goalkeeper Sophie Baggaley to deny Chloe Arthur, before Ellen White gave Birmingham the lead when she headed in from a corner. Lauren Hemp was inches away from providing an instant response for the Vixens but at the other end, Sarah Mayling struck the post before turning provider for her team's second goal, crossing for White to tuck the ball home from close range. Chances were fewer after the break although Baggaley was to pull off another excellent save, this time from Olivia Fergusson, to maintain her side's clean sheet.
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