Chelsea edged Spurs 1-0 while Arsenal almost let slip a two-goal lead against West Ham in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League.
BARCLAYS FA WSL results – Sunday 8 September
Chelsea 1-0 Tottenham Hotspur (Att: 24,564)
Liverpool 0-1 Reading (Att: 1,445)
Birmingham City 0-1 Everton (Att: 873)
Arsenal 2-1 West Ham United
England’s early strike enough for Chelsea
Beth England got the only goal just 4 minutes in, swiftly punishing Tottenham for losing the ball, taking a couple of steps before unleashing a shot from 25 yards.
Only Becky Spencer saves stopped Hannah Blundell and Guro Reiten from the Blues doubling the lead in the first period.
Spurs’ best chance of the half came when Kit Graham drove the ball goal-ward on the angle but Ann-Katrin Berger made the stop and the defence dealt with the loose ball, while Coral-Jade Haines curled an effort just wide from 20 yards.
Rachel Furness came close to an equaliser early in the second half but Berger got down to push it away, Chelsea then came closer still as Spencer turned a Drew Spence drive onto the bar and Reiten nodded the rebound against the upright.
Gunners hold on against Hammers
Reigning champions Arsenal began their season with a narrow win over West Ham, who came so close to wiping out a 2-0 deficit.
Beth Mead scored one and made the other as Arsenal went in 2-0 up against West Ham at the interval. She found the bottom corner from 20 yards before setting up Jill Roord for the second.
The Hammers replied just shy of the hour mark, Erin Simon crossing for Martha Thomas to head home.
West Ham keeper Courtney Brosnan tipped over a Leah Williamson header but the Hammers came desperately close through two Kenza Dali free-kicks, one deflected onto the post, a last-minute effort turned onto the bar by Manuela Zinsberger.
Royals win with Williams rocket
A Fara Williams special 3 minutes before half-time saw Reading come away 1-0 victors over Liverpool.
An early effort from Tash Harding was tipped over the bar by Anke Preuss but the Liverpool goalkeeoper had no answer to Williams’ 25-yard free-kick.
Rinsola Babajide turned inside to fire wide of the visitors far post in the last 10 minutes.
— Barclays FA Women’s Super League (@BarclaysFAWSL) September 8, 2019
Own-goal gives Everton away win
Everton took the points at Birmingham City, after Kerys Harrop turned a Hannah Cain cross into her own net at the start of the second 45.
Birmingham had been frustrated in the first half by Tinja-Riikka Korpela, who denied Brianna Visalli and then turned a 30-yard Lucy Staniforth lob over the top.