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Report: Bristol City Women 2-1 Liverpool Women

Bristol City Women returned to winning ways at the SGS College Stoke Gifford Stadium with a 2-1 victory over Liverpool Women on Saturday afternoon.

Lucy Graham netted her seventh goal of the season to put City Women one-nil up, before Ella Rutherford doubled the home side’s lead with her first goal in Bristol City colours. 

Courtney Sweetman-Kirk bought Liverpool within one goal of the hosts on the thirty-five minute mark, but Tanya Oxtoby’s side saw out the remainder of the game to claim a vital three points.

What happened?

Bristol City Women set the tone in the opening exchanges as they played with confidence, popping passes around the midfield and looking to expose Liverpool when they had the chance. 

Rutherford almost opened the scoring inside the first ten minutes, Juliette Kemppi broke down the right wing and she picked out Rutherford in the box and the forward pivoted on the spot and struck a shot towards goal, but luckily for the visitors Niamh Fahey deflected the shot over the bar. 

City Women broke the deadlock on the fourteen minute mark as Julie Biesmans whipped a corner into the Liverpool box and found Lucy Graham unmarked at the far post, and the Scottish midfield maestro didn’t need a second invitation as she headed the ball into the Liverpool net. 

Ella Rutherford doubled the home sides’ advantage no less than five minutes later, Julie Biesmans’ long range effort was not dealt with by Preuss in the Liverpool goal and Rutherford was on hand to grab her first goal for the club, smashing the ball into the back of the net. 

Lucy Graham scored her seventh goal of the season (via JMPUK).

With their backs against the wall, Liverpool managed to get a goal back before the end of the first half. A ball across the box made its way to the feet of Courtney Sweetman-Kirk at the far post and the winger tucked the ball away to bring her side back into the contest. 

As the second half progressed, Liverpool pressed for an equaliser and Laura Coombs tested Baggaley from range, but the shot-stopper got down well to her right to keep the ball out.

City Women still looked dangerous on the counter with Rosella Ayane and Loren Dykes both making breaks in the second half, but on both occasions the Liverpool defence did just enough to stop the home side creating clear-cut opportunities. 

Sweetman-Kirk then had a chance to bring her side level in the final ten minutes, the forward let the ball run across her body in the box and pulled the trigger but Baggaley was out quickly to close down the space and keep her effort out of the City Women net. 

Oxtoby’s side controlled the final few minutes of play and saw out the rest of the game to claim their third win of the Women’s Super League season and in doing so, the hosts leap-frog Liverpool in the current league table. 


Bristol City Women: 

Baggaley, Dykes (C), Brown (Kerkdijk 49’), Evans, Pattinson, Biesmans, Humphrey, Graham, Ayane, Rutherford, Kemppi (Payne 68’)

Subs: Watson, Johnson, Wilson, Robinson, Woolley 

Liverpool Women: 

Preuss, Roberts, Fahey (Daniels 76’), Bradley-Auckland, Little, Murray, Coombs, Murray (Rogers 65’), Babajide, Sweetman-Kirk, Linnett (Clarke 52’)

Subs: Kitching, Thomas

Key Moment: 

Having taken the lead through an emphatic Lucy Graham header, City Women doubled their lead when Ella Rutherford stepped up and grabbed her first goal for the club, which would also turn out to be the match winner. 

Julie Biesmans picked up the ball in the Liverpool half and let off a long range strike which Preuss could only parry, Rutherford instinctively followed up the shot and hammered the ball into the back of the Liverpool net. 

Player of the match: 

There were many stand-out performers for the home side this afternoon, Humphrey and Biesmans dominated the midfield whilst Pattinson and Dykes both had phenomenal games at full-back, but you can’t look past match winner, Ella Rutherford. 

The forward worked tirelessly throughout the ninety minutes, she was constantly hassling the opposition for the ball, starting counter attacks as well as netting the winning goal.  

Photo of the match:

City Women celebrate the winner (via JMPUK).