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Bristol City Women Earn Promotion With Everton Win

Bristol City Women beat Everton Ladies 3-2 and secure promotion back to WSL1. 

A superb brace from Claire Emslie either side of Millie Farrow’s goal on her return to action were enough to avenge the recent 1-0 defeat they suffered at home.

With Everton sitting two points behind Willie Kirk’s side and just one game to go after the match, Everton needed a win to move ahead of their rivals.

But they fell behind to a corker from Emslie before the half-hour mark before a penalty for a foul on Gabby George allowed Claudia Walker to coolly equalise.

Bristol City Women took control in the second-half when Megan Finnigan’s under hit back pass allowed Farrow to slot home on her return from injury.

Another stunner from Emslie soon followed, the winger cutting in from the left and unleashing an unstoppable effort past Kirstie Levell.

Andy Spence’s side refused to roll over with George’s effort five minutes from time parried by Caitlin Leach and allowing Danielle Turner to scramble home.

And the drama didn’t end there as a 96th minute penalty was awarded to the hosts for handball but Walker’s penalty was saved.

Claire Emslie was overwhelmed with joy after her Bristol City side secured a dramatic return to the FA Women’s Super League 1 with a 3-2 victory over fellow promotion chasers Everton.

Emslie scored either side of Millie Farrow’s effort to put her side 3-1 up but Danielle Turner scrambled home to give Everton hope.

And the hosts nearly earned a vital point when they were awarded a penalty in the 96thminute but Claudia Walker saw her spot kick saved by Caitlin Leach.

“I just can't believe it right now,” Emslie said.

“I didn't want to think about what it might be like to get promoted because I didn't want to jinx it but we're there now and it feels fantastic. Now we want to win the league next weekend."

“It just feels a bit surreal right now. The game as a whole was really good for us and then obviously with the late penalty it was nearly all gone in the end.

“This has been our goal, it's been the club's goal all season.”

Emslie had opened the scoring before a foul on Gabby George gave Everton their first penalty of the game which Walker slotted home to level the score.

But Farrow latched onto Megan Finnigan’s under hit back pass to give City the lead before Emslie unleashed an unstoppable effort past Kirstie Levell in the Everton goal.

Turner had given the hosts hope but Leach’s fantastic late save saw the visitors take all three points and secure return to FA WSL 1 with one game left to play.

And Bristol City manager Willie Kirk wants to try and win the WSL 2 league title when they travel to Oxford United next weekend.

“We’re delighted with promotion, we’re trying to keep a lid on it because we want to win the league but we’re delighted we’re up – it takes a little bit of pressure off,” he said.

“We’d still be happy going up in second because we’d be in FA WSL 1 next season but we want to win the league and Yeovil have two hard games left.

“We won’t be going out next week against Oxford for a Sunday stroll just because we’re up.

“Claire [Emslie] was probably the best signing I ever made back when she was 15 at Hibs but she was superb today, everyone was superb, all the girls were absolutely fantastic.”

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