Hayley Raso hits hat-trick as Everton run riot at Brighton

Copyright: John Walton

A sublime Hayley Raso hat-trick took the headlines at The People’s Pension Stadium as Everton thumped Brighton 5-0 in the Women’s Super League this afternoon.

Goals from Izzy Christiansen and Simone Magill combined with a stunning Raso treble gave Everton all three points, as they gave a perfect response to last week’s home defeat to Chelsea.

The Toffees made three changes, bringing in Abbey-Leigh Stringer, Poppy Pattinson and Ingrid Moe Wold, while Emily Simpkins replaced Nora Heroum for Brighton as boss Hope Powell went in search of a fifth straight win.

Despite Albion’s excellent recent form, it was Willie Kirk’s Everton who took control from the off. Australian Raso issued an early warning sign on the quarter-hour mark, firing over from close range after great work from Claire Emslie.

Everton took the lead soon after when a mix-up between Maya Le Tissier and Megan Walsh resulted in a foul on Raso and Blues captain Christiansen made no mistake from 12-yards. Moments later, the excellent Raso would double the lead, placing beyond Walsh after a fabulous solo run that bamboozled the Seagulls defence.

Any hope of Brighton comeback was extinguished early in the second period when another mix-up in Brighton’s defence released Emslie, and her cross was gleefully headed home by Raso.

Just 25 minutes from the end, Magill added to Brighton’s misery, latching on to Christiansen’s deep free-kick to tap home beyond Walsh from close range. Before player of the match Raso completed an excellent day for the Toffees, finishing superbly after latching onto Nicoline Sorensen’s low centre.

The results brings Brighton’s winning streak to a crushing end, as fifth placed Everton pull seven points clear of the Seagulls in sixth.

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