Last time Chelsea met Manchester City, they were handed a fair beating as we won 4-0 at their turf. Since then the Citizens recovered in form, moving to fifth in the Women’s Super League table just behind Tottenham.
We could decide to show a bit more respect to the team that almost beat us to a league title last season. But soon the visitors at Kingsmeadow showed that would not be necessary, taking an overly defensive stance on the pitch that served only to invite more and more attacking pressure from the hosts.
They would soon be breached by Guro Reiten. A great ball from defender Jess Carter was the assist she needed to score our first goal of the day against the Mancunians.
Chelsea continued to dominate the pitch after the goal, with City showing little confidence in turning it around. Pernille Harder led most of our attempts upfront, as she is still running high in form from all she has been able to do since returning to the lineup as a regular starter.
But as got closer to the end of the first half, City were seemingly catching up to the moment. They had a few attempts that almost put a dent to what had been a solid defensive display by the Blues, although lack of aim and Ann-Katrin Berger’s reflexes saved us from the worst.
City’s close shaves woke Chelsea up at the beginning of the second half. We were trying our hardest to find a two-goal cushion over Manchester City, trying to let Harder and Sam Kerr do the deed for us.
Once again, the visitors tried to foil our plans by increasing the heat on our defence as time ticked on. But Chelsea stood strong and held their efforts, even though they might have left the field feeling they could have done more — or have a bit more luck on their side — to make things a bit easier for us.
- Berger is back under the crossbar, and so is Sam Kerr leading the attacking line as a centre-forward. She has Pernille Harder on her side, in an apparent 4-4-2 employed by Emma Hayes.
- Subs are Fran Kirby for Pernille Harder, Niamh Charles for Jessie Fleming, Lauren James for Sam Kerr, and Drew Spence for Guro Reiten.
- Reiten once again directly contributing to a victory, while doing great work in defence as well.
- Even if no longer at their best, you cannot count Manchester City’s threats in attack out until the final whistle.
- 1-0 is too thin of a lead given the volume of chances we got. But given how meaning City were in a fair share of their attacks, we will take the three points without further complaint!
- Next up: WSL leaders Arsenal at Kingsmeadow, in what might be the competition’s title-deciding match!