While Arsenal moved 3 points clear at the top of the Women’s Super League (33 points) with a straightforward win over Brighton (0-4), Chelsea, which continues on 3rd place (29 points), did its best on an epic match, coming back from a 0-1 in the first 15 minutes to a trashing 6-1 by the end of Sunday’s game against Bristol City.
This was also Emma Hayes’ 200th game in charge of the Blues, and undoubtedly, the players wanted to show their appreciation to the coach in style.
The match started as always, with Chelsea always being the dominant force, not allowing many chances to the opposition. However, a bad defensive error ended quickly in a glimmer of hope for Bristol to go ahead on the score, with Ebony Salmon capitalizing on a loose ball on the 15′. Just for a couple seconds, people believed Bristol could do a miracle in Kingsmeadow, maybe even help Arsenal even more on their way to the title; yet, that wasn’t on Hayes girls’ plans.
An equalizer from Beth England in the 28′ put Chelsea level with the Vixens. The England international beat Sophie Baggaley to the ball, heading quickly into the back of the net. From that moment, it became a turning point for the Blues. They continued to attack, and that’s why it wasn’t strange to see a score of 4-1 in favor of the home team, just before the closing stages of the first half.
Defender Hannah Blundell played outstandingly well, scoring from a close range in the 40′, and a scramble in the penalty box saw Jess Carter score her 1st goal for the Blues, shooting into the bottom right corner in the 45′. Before the half ended, superstar Ji So-Yun fired home from outside the box delighting every fan on the stadium (Especially Chelsea fans, of course).
The second half was a complete domination by the home side. Recent signing Sam Kerr appeared again as she substituted Drew Spence in the 46′, and was almost close to scoring his 1st on the WSL with the Blues, as the Australian No.20 raced through on goal, and elegantly side-stepped the keeper inside the box. There should have been an empty net for her to slide the ball into, but full credit to the Bristol defense for getting back and the sliding Jas Matthews saved the day (for a few minutes).
Three minutes later, Ji grabbed her second in the 49′ (That didn’t go that well, isn’t it?). Hayes also introduced Ramona Bachmann and another new arrival, Jamie-Lee Napier, as the game edged to its conclusion, but there was still time for a sixth. Finally, on the 82′, England scored her double, moving onto 14 goals in all competitions; a thumping header from Andersson’s cross.
And that was it… END OF THE MATCH!!!
A big win, which shows the hunger for titles this team has. Now, the Blues will go all or nothing next weekend against Arsenal, and after seeing this match… who knows if they are not going to give more than one surprise to the WSL leaders. Only time will tell. Until then I guess.