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Women's Football News
The FA WSL title race had another twist this week but it did not mean a change of the top as Manchester City held on to the leadership with a 3-0 victory over Brighton & Hove Albion, all of the goals coming in the first half.
City were in front inside three minutes as Nikita Parris fired home from the penalty spot following a foul in the area on Lauren Hemp and Gemma Bonner added a second on the half hour. Parris rounded off the scoring by completing her double five minutes before half time with a close range header from a corner.
Arsenal remain one point off the pace after they also won 3-0, away to Reading FC Women. History was made as early as the second minute when Vivanne Miedema gave Arsenal the lead, breaking the WSL goalscoring record for a season in the process. Both teams went close to scoring with the home side having their best spell either side of half time but it was the Gunners who scored a decisive second with ten minutes remaining, Kim Little slotting home from the spot after a foul on Danielle van de Donk. Katie McCabe then went on to crown the win for Arsenal by firing in the final goal from outside the area.
A dramatic finish at Kingsmeadow saw Chelsea receive a blow to their title challenge with a 3-2 defeat at home to Birmingham City, who have gone level on points with them. Chelsea went in front early on through in-form striker Erin Cuthbert following good work by Karen Carney but the Blues, playing their first match under new manager Marta Tejedor, hit back to equalise when Emma Follis slid in from close range. Lucy Quinn then put Birmingham ahead for the first time and this time it was Chelsea who replied, Cuthbert scoring her second with seven minutes remaining. As the game went into injury time, Ellen White marked her first game back after five months by volleying in a Charlie Wellings cross against her old club to give them a win which gives their top three hopes a huge shot in the arm and leaves both teams six points behind Manchester City.
Bristol City moved into fifth place and took their unbeaten run to six matches after coming from behind to beat Yeovil Town 2-1. After a goalless first half, Yeovil took the lead two minutes after the restart when Ann Marie Heatherson turned home a low cross from Megan Alexander. Lucy Graham put City back on level terms from the penalty spot and a deflected shot from Rosella Ayane settled a keenly contested West Country derby in the Vixens' favour.
The final match of the weekend was played on Monday evening and it saw Liverpool edge out West Ham Utd 1-0. A tightly contested first half ended goalless, Laura Coombs going closest for the Reds when she hit the bar, but the midfielder was the provider as they took the lead four minutes into the second half, her cross being swept home by Courtney Sweetman-Kirk. The Hammers pressed hard for an equaliser but Liverpool stood firm for a result which means they move level on points with their opponents.
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