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  • By football reporter

Eagles wings clipped by league leaders Liverpool



Yana Daniels’ brace and goals from Katie Stengel and Rachel Furness secured Liverpool a 4-0 win over Crystal Palace in the FA Women’s Championship.

It also ended Palace’s unbeaten run in the league and saw the Reds surge seven points clear off second-placed London City Lionesses. Liverpool almost went ahead within two minutes when Rachel Furness’s diving header was blocked on the line by Molly Sharpe. A minute later, Crystal Palace goalkeeper Emily Orman produced an important save that denied Stengel’s from close-range. Daniels gave Liverpool the opening lead at Hayes Lane who comfortably slotted the ball into the bottom corner after meeting Rachel Furness’ resulting cross. Matt Beard’s side threatened again after Leanne Kiernan’s long-range effort rattled the woodwork. Liverpool extended their lead in the 21st minute through Stengel as she blasted her left-footed effort from an acute angle into the far post. Moments later, Missy Bo Kearns fired a powerful effort forced Orman to produce an excellent save before Leanne Kiernan’s came close with a diving header in the six-yard box. Meanwhile, Dean Davenport’s side should have taken advantage of poor Liverpool marking at Siobhan Wilson’s corner found Sharpe but she flew her effort over the bar. The Reds’ further extended their lead when Taylor Hinds executed an inch-perfect cross found Daniels, who sent a looping header dipped over Palace keeper Orman. Palace started the second-half on the front foot and came close with Bianca Baptiste’s effort flew wide of the post. With 22 minutes remaining, Liverpool substitute Furness smashed her effort which was follow by Kearns set-piece. Palace continued to fight hard to get a consolation goal. Coral-Jade Haines delivered a dangerous ball into the box found Lizzle Waldie, who glided her header wide of the post. Liverpool held on to secure a valuable clean sheet and three points. To follow the action and sign up for The FA Player’s live Barclays FA Women’s Super League coverage visit womenscompetitions.thefa.com

Crystal Palace manager Dean Davenport said: “First and foremost, I didn’t think we started the game really well as a team. I thought Liverpool limited our chances going forward and we are really disappointed that we lacked the desire and intent to have a go at Liverpool because that’s how we have been set up all week. “We got to be disappointed to concede all four goals because the intent from our 18-yard box was simply not good enough today. We can’t put it down to one goal. If we do lack a bit of belief in the first 45 minutes, it was hard for us to get that back. I thought we showed more belief in the second-half and had more entries into their 18-yard box which we actually caused Liverpool a few problems. “The belief in the second-half was there and if we score one or get two then it would have been a totally different story. I got to admit that our substitutes and a change of system at half-time have made a massive difference to the way we played in the second-half. We started to press high and caused them problems on the flanks but it wasn’t meant to be.”

Liverpool manager Matt Beard said: “This was a tough game today. We could see before they came out for the warm-up, you could see their confidence and they were up for the game. We took the same approach like we did at Durham and we could unsettle them when they played out from the back. “We had a good few chance before we scored our first goal and I thought Palace defended really well. We caused them so many problems on our set-plays and we could hit them on the transition because Palace are quite expansive when they play and tend to keep playing even if they turn the ball over. We knew where we could hurt them and we got the rewards from that. “I thought Katie Stengel lead the line really well and I think she caused Palace endless problems because she’s not only a back to goal player – she can stretch in behind and she’s got great feet which we’ve seen from the goal she scored from such a tight angle. “Four goals, clean sheet and an away victory against a team that have been absolutely flying. It is important to continue the run we are on in the league. As long as we win football matches, it stays in our hands.”

Crystal Palace: (3-5-2): Emily Orman; Gracie Pearse, Annabel Johnson, Lizzie Waldie; Kirsty Barton, Hannah Churchill, Sophie McLean, Coral-Jade Haines, Siobhan Wilson; Bianca Baptiste, Molly Sharpe Substitutes: Leanne Cowan for Churchill 45, Aimee Everett for McLean 45, Millie Farrow for Sharpe 45, Isabella Sibley for Baptiste 82, Substitutes not used: Grace Coombs, Hope Smith, Charley Clifford, Leigh Nicol Bookings: Churchill 39, Cowan 55, Johnson 66 Liverpool: (4-4-2): Rachael Laws; Megan Campbell, Taylor Hinds, Niamh Fahey, Leighanne Robe; Yana Daniels, Rhiannon Roberts, Missy Bo Kearns, Rachel Furness; Katie Stengel, Leanne Kiernan Substitutes: Jade Bailey for Kiernan 65, Meikayla Moore for Campbell 79, Carla Humphrey for Kearns 79, Ashley Hodson for Daniels 80, Charlotte Wardlaw for Roberts 82 Goals: Daniels 15 & 33, Stengel 24, Furness 68 Bookings: Kiernan 30, Laws 90+4 Referee: Georgia Ball Attendance: 613

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