Chelsea returned to the top of the Barclays FA Women’s Super League table and they are now one game away from retaining the title for a second successive year following a 2-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur at The Hive this evening.
Despite dominating possession in the first half, it took The Blues 41 minutes to break the deadlock through Sam Kerr. The Australian international then doubled her side’s lead in the second half to give Chelsea all three points in North London.
Rehanne Skinner made six changes to her Tottenham Hotspur side that lost 4-1 to Manchester United over a week ago which saw returns for Abbie McManus and Esther Morgan while Chloe Peplow was handed her first start of 2021 in midfield.
Chelsea reached their first-ever UEFA Women’s Champions League final on Sunday following a 5-3 aggregate win over Bayern Munich in their semi-final tie. Emma Hayes also made a handful of changes from that side which saw returns to the starting XI for the likes of Beth England, Guro Reiten and Jonna Andersson.
The away side started brightly and had a brilliant opportunity to take the lead in the opening 10 minutes. The returning England couldn’t divert a side-footed effort on target, as the ball rolled wide of Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper Becky Spencer’s goal following a good pull-back from Reiten on the left.
Chelsea had further chances in the opening half-hour to take the lead,but neither Kerr, Erin Cuthbert, Sophie Ingle or Niamh Charles could find that crucial goal for Hayes’ side, forcing Spencer into some impressive saves in the process.
The Blues had to wait until the 41st minute until they could finally take the lead as Kerr tapped in at the far post to break the hosts’ resistance. She scored her 19th Barclays FA Women’s Super League goal of the season as she got on the end of an inviting Reiten cross on the counter attack.
Hayes’ side could have had their second goal of the evening five minutes into the second half but Andersson could only divert an effort onto the bar following a good cross from the byline by England.
They wouldn’t be stopped though and after 53 minutes The Blues doubled their lead. Kerr earned her second goal of the game as she tapped in the rebound after Spencer had originally kept out her goal-bound header following another brilliant cross by Reiten on the left.
Skinner’s Spurs side struggled to get a foothold in the game against their London rivals but their best chance fell to Rachel Williams on the hour mark when she aimed for goal from a narrow angle inside of the box but it was easily gathered by Chelsea goalkeeper Ann-Katrin Berger.
Holding a comfortable lead in the second half, Chelsea’s intensity slightly dipped but they remained on top of possession. They superbly managed the second half and made sure that they took all three points back to South West London.
While Spurs have little left to play for, they will hope to wrap up their season with a win against strugglers Birmingham City this coming Sunday when they travel to the SportNation.bet Stadium.
As for Chelsea, they simply have to win this weekend’s game against Reading at Kingsmeadow. Should they do so, they will record their second successive Barclays FA Women’s Super League title. Manchester City currently sit two points behind Hayes’ side and they take on West Ham United on Sunday, so Chelsea will look for nothing but a win as they aim to keep their bid to win the quadruple alive.