Sam Kerr and Fran Kirby taught Birmingham City a lesson in finishing to win 6-0 at Kingsmeadow. A first half hat-trick from Kerr followed by a Kirby brace and another from Guro Reiten ensured the home side an emphatic victory.
Berger; Charles, Bright, Eriksson, Andersson, Spence, Leopolz, Kirby, Harder, Cuthbert, Kerr
Hampton; Mayling, Brougham, Lawley, Mace, Scott, Murray (c), Green, Kelly, Littlejohn, Walker
How it went
Chelsea showed no mercy to their visitors Birmingham, fielding a very strong side. Having played so many games in the last month you would have thought Emma Hayes may give some of her stars a rest but not today.
Birmingham’s Carla Ward selected a side with the intention of keeping out the Blues front line. Ward went with five at the back but Chelsea still managed to slice open their defence.
Jonna Andersson was the first Chelsea player to try her luck. Her powerful shot was inches over the bar.
Hannah Hampton made a number of vital saves but pressure soon told and Chelsea got their first. Kerr pounced on the ball in the area and blasted it past Hampton.
Pernille Harder wanted to get in on the act but her powerful shot ricocheted off the crossbar. Kerr was on hand to knock the ball into the empty net.
Kerr got her hat-trick just before half time. She jumped highest from Erin Cuthbert’s free kick to head the ball into the back of the net.
Hayes rings the changes
Hayes decided to rotate her squad part way through the game. She made three subsitutions at the start of the second half bringing on Hannah Blundell, Beth England and Reiten.
Birmingham’s skipper Christie Murray made several challenges in the middle of the pitch. She teamed up well with Harriet Scott threading through balls to lone striker Claudia Walker. However Birmingham only managed three shots on goal compared to Chelsea’s 26.
Birmingham made two substitutions on the hour mark, bringing on Jamie-Lee Napier and Lucy Whipp. However, they couldn’t break down Chelsea’s dominance.
The Blues wanted more goals and Kirby duly supplied the next after an England lay-off. Reiten then added a fifth after Niamh Charles whipped in a cross.
Reiten was hungry for more and she hit a delightful ball that bounced off the crossbar. Birmingham looked rattled and could not find a way back into the game.
Kirby added a sixth in injury time to complete the masterpiece display for the West Londoners.
What the result means
Chelsea maintain their lead at the top of the Women’s Super League by two points. Manchester City who won 3-0 against Tottenham are hot on their tail.
Birmingham didn’t expect to pick up any points today. For them the relegation battle is still not over but the teams at the bottom remain unchanged after the teams below them all lost too.