Pernille Harder scores twice to give Chelsea Women victory at Everton | Women’s Super League

Two goals from Pernille Harder and a late strike from Niamh Charles secured Chelsea a 3-1 win in a tight contest with Everton.

There were touching scenes as the teams warmed up, with Chelsea players wearing shirts bearing the words “get well soon Emma” across the back in support of their absent manager, who is recovering from an emergency hysterectomy following her ongoing battle with endometriosis. Later, the men’s team also wore the message before their Premier League match against Aston Villa.

In Hayes’s place for the trip to Everton was her assistant Denise Reddy, who worked with Hayes at Chicago Red Stars before joining her at Chelsea in 2020 – although the general manager, Paul Green, had said Hayes would be glued to the TV and connected to the bench should she be feeling up to it.

Everton last beat Chelsea in the league in October 2013, with Chelsea having won seven and drawn one of the encounters since, scoring 19 and conceding none, but the Merseyside team are transformed this season under their Danish manager, Brian Sørensen, who left Fortuna Hjørring to join the Toffees.

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WSL roundup: United and Arsenal keep up perfect starts


Ella Toone [pictured] scored twice and provided an assist for Leah Galton’s goal as Manchester United swept aside Brighton with a 4-0 win to continue their perfect start to the season.

Marc Skinner’s side were rampant at their Leigh Sports Village home, with Toone’s double and Galton’s strike all coming in the first half and summer signing Adriana Leon adding to the tally in the second. United stay top of the WSL table on nine points, with 10 goals scored and none conceded in three games.

Arsenal kept pace at the top with their third win from three, behind United by a single goal after a 1-0 victory at Reading. Stina Blackstenius fired a low shot beyond Jackie Burns after half an hour, but the keeper then saved Kim Little’s penalty on the hour mark.

Reading had late chances to grab a draw, with Lily Woodham’s corner hitting the post before Natasha Dowie was denied by a fine reaction save from Manuela Zinsberger 10 minutes from time. The Gunners keeper kept a record eighth straight clean sheet as her team held on.

Two goals from Bunny Shaw, one from Lauren Hemp and a late strike from new recruit Yui Hasegawa gave Manchester City their first points of the season with a 4-0 win over bottom-placed Leicester. Gareth Taylor’s side now have a chance to rebound from their poor start; they do not face any of the current top three until the Manchester derby on 11 December.

Tottenham clung on to a narrow 1-0 lead and held off a resurgent Liverpool performance in the second half to take all three points at Brisbane Road. Celin Bizet’s cross deflected in off Liverpool’s Niamh Fahey at the near post after 11 minutes, but manager Rehanne Skinner will be concerned after her side failed to build on a dominant start. Suzanne Wrack

Photograph: Ed Sykes/X03816

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Back-to-back wins, beating Liverpool 3-0 in the Merseyside derby and Leicester 1-0, followed an opening-day defeat against West Ham after a string of pre-season losses as the team got to grips with the new manager’s plan.

At Walton Hall Park, a sold-out with 1,668 fans, a club-record crowd at the ground, against the champions, the home team started brightly. The wing-back Lucy Graham, the Manchester City loanee Jess Park and Sweden’s Hanna Bennison were particularly effective.

Chelsea’s Niamh Charles scores their side’s third goal of the game during the Barclays Women’s Super League match at Walton Hall Park, Liverpool.
Niamh Charles seals the points with a third goal for Chelsea in injury time. Photograph: Isaac Parkin/PA

Chelsea meanwhile threatened consistently down the left-hand side and in the 38th minute they made the breakthrough down that flank, with Guro Reiten’s cross headed powerfully past the goalkeeper Courtney Brosnan by Harder.

Unperturbed, in the second half the Everton players were rewarded for their labours. Megan Finnigan’s free-kick found Gabby George, the wing-back forced a save from Ann-Katrin Berger, but the ball hit the centre-back Kadeisha Buchanan and went in.

It took just five minutes for Chelsea to regain their lead, with Brosnan penalised for bringing down Reiten and Harder converting from the spot. Substitute Charles scored a third in added time, dancing clear of three Everton defenders before firing coolly past Brosnan.

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