An Ellen White brace saw Birmingham City become the first side to beat Manchester City, while Chelsea went top with victory at Yeovil Town, ahead of their away game with the Cityzens on Saturday.
Wednesday 21st February
FA WSL 1
Birmingham City 2-0 Manchester City (Att: 803)
Liverpool 3-1 Sunderland (Att: 497)
Reading 4-0 Bristol City (Att: 172)
Yeovil Town 0-2 Chelsea (Att: 454)
FA WSL 2
Aston Villa 0-4 Doncaster Rovers Belles (Att: 232)
Millwall Lionesses 1-1 London Bees (Att: 170)
White the match-winner
Ellen White scored both goals as Birmingham City swiftly avenged Sunday’s SSE WFA Cup defeat by Manchester City.
White pounced on a loose back pass to beat Ellie Roebuck with a powerful low finish and give Birmingham the advantage midway through the first half.
Another mix-up looked to have let White in again but Abbie McManus produced an excellent last-ditch tackle.
Although White’s volley into the net from a Paige Williams’ free kick was ruled out, it was 2-0 with 20 minutes left as Jess Carter and Emma Follis combined to set up White for her second.
Birmingham City striker Ellen White said: “Obviously we’re really delighted to get the win, even though inside I’m a little gutted that it couldn’t have been the other way round with the FA Cup.
“We fought for each other – our fitness levels are really high now and we forced them into a mistake and luckily I could run straight on to that and finish it.”
Manchester City manager Nick Cushing: “We fully accept that we were beaten by a better team tonight and that’s what happens in football.
“Although I thought Birmingham were a difficult team to break down, we had control of the game, but I think the mistake for the first goal did swing the momentum.”
Quickfire double sees Chelsea top
Fran Kirby came off the bench to swiftly break Yeovil Town’s resistance, with Jonna Andersson soon sealing victory with Chelsea’s second.
Yeovil Town held the Blues to a goalless first half and might have claimed their first goal of the season but Becky Spencer tipped the ball over the bar from Ella Pusey’s free kick.
Kirby took full advantage when the ball broke to her inside the penalty area, firing Chelsea one up on 62 minutes.
Just three minutes after taking the lead, Andersson stole in at the far post to score with a deflected effort.
Chelsea midfielder Karen Carney: “Yeovil have made it really difficult for us, it’s a hard place to come.
“The crowd were like the 12th man for them so we’re really pleased with the result. Fair play to Yeovil, they’re a tough side to break down.
“I think it shows with our squad that when we need that little bit of impetus, players can come on and give us that boost and change the dynamics a bit – that’s what happened second half.”
Stoney given winning send off
Casey Stoney ended a long and illustrious playing career in a 3-1 Liverpool win over Sunderland, which lifted the Reds back up to third.
Jess Clarke gave Liverpool an 18th-minute lead when turning home a cross from Alex Greenwood.
Sunderland were level on 33 minutes, Lucy Staniforth finding Dominique Bruinenberg who fired across goal into the bottom corner.
The Reds took control with two goals in the first 10 minutes of the second half, Clarke heading in another Greenwood cross and Beth England with the third after good work from Laura Coombs and Caroline Weir.
Stoney ended her playing career when replaced a minute from time by Kate Longhurst and was given a standing ovation.
Liverpool manager Scott Rogers said: “It was a very professional performance and a great way to send Casey Stoney out.
“I’ve said a lot about Casey. She came in here at a time when I needed some experience and she’s been a fantastic professional for me.”
“I said to them before the game: ‘there’s an occasion today’ but the first 25 minutes, we were unbelievable – but for some reason, in the lead up to half-time, we just stopped playing.
“At half-time, we spoke to the players about what we needed to do and what we needed to change in the second half and after that, we blew them away.”
Fara stars for four-star Royals
Reading went sixth on goal-difference with a 4-0 defeat of Bristol City, in which Fara Williams rifled in two goals for the Royals and was desperately close to a hat-trick.
Rachel Rowe rocket just cleared the Vixens bar but the Royals were ahead just before the half hour, Jo Potter’s ball was flicked on and saved by Sophie Baggaley but Kirsty Pearce bundled home the rebound.
In the second half, Baggaley denied Rachel Furness from close range but there was no stopping Williams’ strike.
Remi Allen and Brooke Chaplen exchanged passes before the latter chipped the keeper for 3-0.
Chaplen then smacked the foot of the visitors’ post but Williams did later find the net from distance.
Williams’ free Kick was spilled by Baggaley almost over the line, before Loren Dykes made a great stop from another Chaplen effort.
Rayner double helps stretch Doncaster lead
Doncaster Rovers Belles defeated hosts Aston Villa 4-0 to go four points clear in WSL 2, Rebecca Rayner with a brace.
Emily Simpkins planted a free header wide for the Belles but they went in front on 13 minutes, Rhiannon Roberts heading in a Sophie Walton free-kick.
Jade Richards was denied a leveller before the break by Bethan Davies’ finger-tip save and after the restart, Elizabeta Ejupi fired over from close range.
Rayner struck again on 68 minutes from a Rachel Newborough delivery and although Kirsty Hanson hit the inside of the post, Jess Sigsworth later slammed home from close range.
Hanson completed the scoring when the ball was only cleared as far as her, advancing to round the keeper and slot home
Millwall held by Bees
Second-placed Millwall Lionesses had to settle for a point in a 1-1 draw at home to London Bees.
Taylor O’Leary headed a corner into the net to give London Bees the lead on 10 minutes but Millwall were not long in replying, Rianna Dean nodding in a cross.
Millwall’s Sarah Quantrill kept out a fine Chelsea Weston strike and at the other end, Nicola Hobbs tipped Ashlee Hincks’ effort over the bar
Ellie Mason was denied by the Bees’ crossbar 20 minutes from time as the game finished all square.
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