#FAWC: Top two win as rivals falter

Durham defeated London City Lionesses 1-0
Durham edged London City Lionesses 1-0. (Photo: Colin Lock)

Durham and Liverpool stepped clear of the rest in the FA Women’s Championship, with their three closest rivals all losing.

Durham 1-0 London City Lionesses
Liverpool 2-0 Lewes
Blackburn Rovers 3-2 Coventry United
Charlton Athletic 0-1 Sunderland
Watford 2-2 Crystal Palace
Bristol City 5-1 Sheffield United

Wildcats win with early goal

Durham stayed top with a single-goal success over London City Lionesses. The decisive moment came after only four minutes, as Dee Bradley headed home a Beth Hepple corner.

Kiernan bags Liverpool brace

Liverpool stayed within two points of the leaders after seeing off Lewes. Leanne Kiernan swept the Reds ahead on 17 minutes from Melissa Lawley. Izzy Dalton hit the bar from distance for the Rooks but Kiernan doubled the lead before the break.

Liverpool's Lianne Kiernan scored twice against Lewes
Liverpool’s two-goal Leanne Kiernan battles for possession with Ellie Hack of Lewes. (Photo: Lewis Storey/Getty Images)

Bristol blow away Blades

Lucy Watson gave Sheffield United an early advantage and Courtney Sweetman-Kirk close to doubling it from distance, only for Bristol City to turn it around as Abi Harrison knocked in an Aggie Beever-Jones cross and then Abbie Palmer scored from Satara Murray’s cushioned header. Palmer scored direct from a corner after the break and then delivered the corner from which Chloe O’Connor headed the fourth, with Melissa Johnson rounding off the scoring as the Robins moved level on points with the Blades.

Addicks defeated by Black Cats 

Sunderland ended Charlton’s unbeaten home run, climbing three places to fifth as a result, They opened the scoring via Emma Kelly’s free kick, which was eventually netted by Grace McCatty. Vyan Sampson hit the post for the Addicks before the break, and despite second-half pressure, the Addicks were unable to equalise.

Rovers thwart Coventry comeback

Saffron Jordan converted a tenth-minute penalty for Blackburn against Coventry, after Megan Hornby was brought down in the box. Farah Crompton got their second following up Annabel Blanchard’s saved strike. Although United replied with two goals in the last five minutes from Rio Hardy and Katie Wilkinson, Rovers won it deep into added time when Ellie Leek tucked away Blanchard’s cross.

Watford off the mark after fightback

Kirsty Barton scored for Crystal Palace at Vicarage Road despite Georgie Ferguson saving her initial effort, Sophie McLean was put through to get the visitors’ second after the restart. However, Watford hit back in the last 13 minutes, Lenny Priest scoring after Anaisa Harney’s effort was blocked on the line, Harney then taking advantage of a spill by the Eagles’ keeper.

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