Barclays Women’s Championship title race tightens up even further

Barclays Womens Championship - Sheffield United v Crystal Palace - Bramall Lane
Rachel Brown (24 Sheffield United) celebrates her goal against Crystal Palace. (Sean Chandler / SPP)

Wins for London City Lionesses and Sheffield United over the Barclays Women’s Championship leading pair leaves just one point separating the top four.

Durham 0-1 Charlton Athletic
Birmingham City 0-0 Blackburn Rovers
Lewes 2-1 Watford
London City Lionesses 1-0 Sunderland
Sheffield United 2-0 Crystal Palace
Southampton 5-0 Reading

Sheffield United are up to sixth on goal-difference, after sending second-placed Crystal Palace to a 2-0 defeat. Bex Rayner hit the post early on for the Blades but they eventually led after the hour mark, when Rachel Brown headed home from a corner top open her account for Sheffield. The points were sealed late on, Jodie Hutton coming off the bench to swiftly score direct from a corner kick.

London City Lionesses defeated leaders Sunderland 1-0, to move up to ninth place and three points clear of danger. Ruesha Littlejohn curled the ball into the top corner from the edge of the box in the first half, for a massive win for the Dartford-based side.

Barclays FA Womens Championship - Southampton v Reading - St Mary's Stadium
Atlanta Primus (20 Southampton) and goalkeeper Emily Orman (Reading) compete for the ball. (Jay Patel/SPP)

Southampton overcame Reading 5-0 to become one of three sides a single point behind the leaders, although having played a game more. The Saints struck three times in 18 first-half minutes, Katie Wilkinson meeting Megan Collett’s cross with a diving header, before her backheel saw Ella Morris slot home and she got her second when nodding in an Atlanta Primus cross. Sophia Pharoah added a brace after the break,

Charlton Athletic got the only goal of the game early on, to make the long journey back from Durham with all three points and also place themselves one point off the top. Six minutes in and the visitors were in front, Elisha N’Dow getting on the end of a cross to nod into the net. The Addicks held on at the end, as Jessica Gray made two big saves and Beth Roe cleared off the line.

Barclays Womens Championship - Birmingham City v Blackburn Rovers - St Andrews
Choe Yu-ri (26 Birmingham) on the ball against Blackburn Rovers. (Natalie Mincher/SPP)

Birmingham City promotion hopes were not helped by a goalless home draw with Blackburn Rovers. The Blues are seven points off the pace but do have a couple of games in hand on the top team.

Lewes came out on top in the basement battle with Watford, to move within two points of safety. Maria Farrugia and Aimee Claypole combined well to set up Grace Riglar to give Lewes a 16th-minute lead. It was 2-0 in added time before the interval, as Riglar struck again. Carly Johns made for a tense period of stoppage time by halving the deficit on 90 minutes. While the Rooks are closing in on Reading who have played two games fewer, Watford now need a bare minimum of six points from five games to have a chance of avoiding the drop.

Manchester City Women now just two goals behind WSL leaders Chelsea

Upcoming Events

Would you like to read more women’s football news just like this? Sign up to receive the She Kicks Women’s Football newsletter