Two Championship sides made it a difficult day for WSL opposition in the Conti Cup, as Spurs sent Yeovil Town to a 4-0 home defeat and Durham led Liverpool 3-1 before being pegged back to 3-3 and losing the shoot-out.
Sunday 16 September
FA Women’s Continental Cup
Group 1 North
Bristol City 0-3 Manchester City (Att: 451)
Leicester City WFC 0-1 Aston Villa (Att: 312)
Sheffield United 0-2 Birmingham City (Att: 331)
Group 2 North
Durham 3-3 Liverpool (Liverpool won 4-3 on pens) (Att: 352)
Everton 3-2 Reading (Att: 143)
Group 1 South
Brighton & Hove Albion 3-1 London Bees
Crystal Palace 0-4 Chelsea
Yeovil Town 0-4 Tottenham Hotspur (Att: 415)
Group 2 South
Lewes 0-9 Arsenal (Att: 945)
West Ham United 4-0 Millwall Lionesses (Att: 557)
Cityzens’ second-half show seals points
Group leaders Manchester City returned from Bristol City with all three points but had been held to a goalless first half.
Caroline Weir was closest to breaking deadlock before the break with a powerful attempt from just outside the box that skimmed the post.
Seven minutes after the restart, Claire Emslie’s shot from the edge of the box deflected in off Gemma Evans to give the visitors the lead.
Emslie was involved again when winning a spot-kick which Nadia Nadim converted, before Caroline Weir rounded off the victory with the third goal in the 72nd minute.
Villa bounce back
Aston Villa responded to last week’s drubbing by Manchester United by getting the only goal of the game at Leicester, thereby banking their first points.
Villa scored 19 minutes in as a ball across the back line was fired home by Kerri Welsh.
The Foxes had a great chance to level on 67 minutes when Leigh Dugmore won a penalty but Freda Ayisi’s spot kick was well saved by Aja Aguirre, who also blocked the follow up.
Blades eventually succumb to Birmingham
Birmingham City came away from Sheffield United 2-0 winners despite suffering a somewhat frustrating first half.
Sheffield United got through to half-time unscathed but largely thanks to the woodwork that thwarted Birmingham four times.
Chloe Arthur was denied by the bar twice, once from all of 35 yards, Kerys Harrop headed against the post.
It was inside the last 20 minutes that City finally made the breakthrough with a Lucy Staniforth strike from distance that flew into the back of the net.
The win was secured when Shania Hayles volleyed beyond Nikki Hobbs for her first goal the season.
Reds rescue two points at Durham
With former England goalkeeper Chris Kirkland in his first match as Liverpool’s caretaker boss, the Reds came back from 3-1 down for a 3-3 tie at Championship side Durham and then won the shoot-out.
Two goals in the opening 3 minutes at Durham, as Sophie Bradley-Auckland turned in a flick on by Rinsola Babajide from Christie Murray’s set-piece for Liverpool but Emily Roberts replied immediately from Sarah Robson through ball.
Murray hit the post with another free kick but the Wildcats’ Roberts hit the back of the net for a second time when turning in Abi Cottam’s cross on 21 minutes.
Early in the second half it was 3-1 when Cottam headed home Hill’s cross but the Reds fought back as Niamh Charles set up goals firstly for Babajide and then with 4 minutes left, Courtney Sweetman-Kirk. Roberts was denied a hat-trick by a fine Anka Preuss save to send the match to penalties for the extra point, which the visitors won in sudden-death through Bradley-Auckland.
Walker brace brings Everton victory
Two goals from the Toffees’ Claudia Walker proved enough to edge out top of the table Reading.
Everton were in front after 14 minutes as Dominique Bruinenberg found Walker to score past Rachel Laws.
Reading were briefly level 10 minutes later when Megan Finnigan turned Brooke Chaplin’s cross into her own net but Walker soon restored the lead from just outside the box.
Inessa Kaagman extended the advantage but Chaplen pulled one back for the Royals with 14 minutes remaining.
Brighton come back to beat Bees
Brighton came from a goal down to record a 3-1 home win over London Bees at Crawley Town FC.
London Bees struck midway through the first half at Brighton when Destiney Toussaint played in Paula Howells to fire home inside the far post but the Seagulls would be ahead by half time.
Ini Umotong equalised 5 minutes later from close range and then Sophie Perry’s cross was headed home by Ellie Brazil.
Aileen Whelan made sure of the points with Albion’s third on the counter-attack in the penultimate minute, with an angled finish past Sarah Quantrill.
Chelsea take time to see off Palace
Although Chelsea ran out 4-0 winners at second tier newcomers Crystal Palace, it was only in the last half hour or so that the result was put beyond doubt and the Blues made it three straight wins.
Chelsea’s Adelina Engman was played in by Bethany England for an early goal but Blues’ debutant keeper Lizzie Durack had to produce a stunning save to deny Chloe Burr a shock leveller for Palace.
Megan Lynch made fins stops from Fran Kirby and Erin Cuthbert but England doubled the lead on 56 minutes from Kirby’s through-ball.
Drew Spence made it 3-0 reacting fastest after her initial shot came back off the post and Kirby completed a hat-trick of assists by back-heeling the ball for England to get her second goal of the game.
Spurs put four past Glovers
Tottenham Hotspur pulled off a 4-0 win away to WSL side Yeovil Town.
Spurs took the lead when Sarah Wiltshire scored against her former club, assisted by Jess Naz.
Renee Hector crossed a long ball in for Coral-Jade Haines, who controlled it before smashing it in at the near post for 2-0.
Spurs keeper Chloe Morgan kept out a powerful hit from Olivia Fergusson and on the counter-attack, Naz delivered the ball for Haines to head home her second.
Spurs’ fourth goal of the match came from another breakaway, a third assist for Naz providing Haines with a hat-trick.
Arsenal rout Rookettes
A clinical Arsenal side stormed to a 9-0 scoreline away at Lewes in front of a attendance close on 1,000.
The Gunners got four goals in the opening half-hour at Lewes, Danielle van der Donk with the first on 7 minutes, before Vivianne Miedema netted either side of a Katie McCabe effort to put the visitors firmly in control.
Kim Little got the fifth and struck again from the penalty spot after Miedema was brought down for a 6-0 interval lead.
Arsenal were seven up inside the hour through Lisa Evans, Miedema then got her second and Jordan Nobbs set up Little to drive home number nine and her hat-trick goal.
Storming start by Hammers
West Ham got the job done fast with three goals in the opening dozen minutes against Millwall.
The Hammers were quickly three goals up against the Lionesses through Esme De Graaf, Brianna Visalli and then a Rosie Kmita finish on the follow up from a Jane Ross effort.
However, the score remained the same until De Graaf doubled her tally inside the final 5 minutes.