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FAWSL Week 7 roundup: London, Manchester derbies end even

Photo by Jacques Feeney/Sports Press Photo

Manchester United remains atop the FA Women’s Super League following a 2-2 draw with rivals Manchester City on Saturday and a subsequent 1-1 draw between Chelsea and Arsenal on Sunday. Arsenal could have returned to the top of the table in England after losing to Manchester United last week, but a late goal for the Gunners was canceled out by a last-gasp equalizer from Chelsea.

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Here’s what went down in England ahead of an extended break in league play:

Manchester United 2, Manchester City 2

It was a classic tale of two halves as Manchester City jumped out to a 2-0 lead before halftime behind goals by Chloe Kelly and Laura Coombs, the second of which came in stoppage time. United struggled to defend from open play and set pieces throughout the first half and were particularly exposed on Kelly’s opening goal, which saw several failed clearance attempts lead to the tally.

Casey Stoney’s side turned things around after the break, however, and the insertion of Kristy Hanson on the right side of midfield was a big part of that. Hanson scored the equalizer in the 74th minute, and it was U.S. international Tobin Heath who got the ball rolling on the comeback with an incredible strike which dipped past City goalkeeper Ellie Roebuck.

The draw keeps United unbeaten through seven league matches. The two teams meet again on Thursday in the League Cup.

Chelsea 1, Arsenal 1

Chelsea join Manchester United as the only other unbeaten team remaining in the FAWSL after clawing back a point from Arsenal late in Sunday’s match. Chelsea also have a game in hand on United and the rest of the top five.

Beth Mead put Arsenal ahead in the 86th minute after Vivianne Miedema made a surging run down the left flank to set up Mead for the sliding finish.

Arsenal, however, could not hold on. Chelsea forward Pernille Harder drove down the right side of Arsenal’s penalty area in the 90th minute and saw her cross deflected by Gunners defender Carlotte Wubben-Moy. The ball awkwardly floated over Arsenal goalkeeper Manuela Zinsberger — who was caught flat-footed — at an acute angle and into the net.

Everton 1, Reading 1

Everton remain in the top four after drawing Reading, 1-1, though the Toffees missed out on an opportunity to climb level with Arsenal. Simone Magill opened the scoring in the 39th minute for Everton, but Natasha Harding equalized for Reading just three minutes later on a lofted shot to the far post.

Aston Villa 0, Birmingham City 1

Claudia Walker’s goal in the 72nd minute made the difference for Birmingham City, who were out-shot, out-possessed and out-passed. But City’s victory keeps them in the top half of the table on goal difference, which is a remarkable accomplishment for the club thus far.

West Ham 0, Brighton & Hove Albion 1

Similarly, West Ham enjoyed 62% of possession and over double the shots but failed to convert any opportunities. Rianna Jarrett’s 69th-minute tally for Brighton was the difference on Sunday.

Bristol City 2, Tottenham 2

The FAWSL’s only two winless teams remain that way after splitting the points in a dramatic match on Saturday, though the result does neither any favors as they strive to claw closer to the middle of the table early in the season.

Bristol went ahead in the 37 minute behind Chloe Logarzo’s penalty kick, but Siri Worm equalized for Tottenham five minutes later. Ashleigh Neville then put Spurs ahead in the 64 minute, but Rianna Dean’s red card in the 77 minute reduced the leaders to 10 players, and Ebony Salmon found the dramatic equalizer for Bristol in stoppage time.

The point was Bristol’s first of the season from six games. Spurs have just 3 points from seven games.

Alex Morgan made her first start for Tottenham, playing the first 45 minutes before being replaced by Dean to start the second half.


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