Chelsea overcome early scare to defeat Liverpool

Chelsea's Sam Kerr shoots the ball.
Chelsea's Sam Kerr shoots during the FA Women's Super League match against Liverpool at Kingsmeadow on May 03, 2023. (Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

Goals from Niamh Charles and Sam Kerr rescue a 2-1 win over Liverpool for reigning WSL champions Chelsea. 

It was much better playing conditions at Kingsmeadow this evening compared to the original fixture back in January. That match had to be abandoned after six minutes because of a frozen pitch.

How the game unfolded

Emma Kovisto gave Liverpool a surprise early lead after she managed to volley home Natasha Dowie’s cross at the far post. 

A flurry of chances came for Chelsea, in particular top-scorer Sam Kerr who saw her header finger-tipped onto the crossbar by goalkeeper Faye Kirby. The Australian had a couple of other shots, but they were just narrowly off target.

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The Blues continued to pile the pressure on Matt Beard’s side and eventually found an equaliser on the stroke of halftime through Niamh Charles, who glanced her header goal-wards following a corner. 

Liverpool’s defensive line dealt with all that Chelsea’s attackers had to throw at them. But their resistance was finally broken towards the closing stages of the match as Jessie Fleming’s shot rockets off the crossbar and Sam Kerr pounces to tap in the rebound. 

Team lineups

Chelsea: Berger, Perisset, Carter, Eriksson, Charles, Leupolz (Kaneryd, 80′), Cuthbert (Cankovic, 54’), Reiten, James (Harder, 54’), Fleming (Ingle, 88′) and Kerr.

Liverpool: Kirby, Kovisto, Bonner, Roberts, Matthews, Hinds, Holland (Lundgaard, 60’), Taylor (Robe, 60’), Kearns (Humphrey, 82′), Van De Sandsen (Stengel, 60’) and Dowie. 

Milestone for Bonner

Despite the loss, Gemma Bonner made her 125th appearance for Liverpool. The milestone comes after two spells with the Reds after featuring for fellow WSL club Manchester City from 2018 to 2021 and more recently captaining NWSL outfit Racing Louisville.

Up next

Both sides are back in action this weekend. Liverpool entertain Manchester City at Prenton Park on Sunday afternoon, whilst Chelsea welcome Everton later that evening—that game will air live on Sky Sports in the UK.

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