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  • Writer's pictureBy Paul Lagan at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

England scores a brace as Spurs secure WSL survival after beating relegation-haunted Reading 4-1

By Paul Lagan at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

Spurs 4 v Reading 1

Beth England scored a brace that has kept Spurs in the WSL for another season as the north Londoners saw off relegation-haunted Reading 4-1 at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

She was given a standing ovation as she was replaced with six minutes of the game left and it was well deserved.

The £250,000 Spurs coughed up to sign her from Chelsea is probably the best piece of transfer darling the club - men or women have done in recent seasons, as her goals have ensured another season in the top flight.

Celin Bizet and Kit Graham notched a goal piece.

Spurs soar to the dizzy heights of eight in the 12-team division, with 17 points with one match left.

Reading have 11 points, with one game left and are two points adrift of Leicester City who have a game in hand.

Spurs had several excellent chances to open the scoring in the must win game against bottom of the WSL table Reading.

But for the most part, the inability to get the ball either over goalkeeper Grace Maloney or wide of her were the home’s side’s downfall - the stopper thwarted the chances of Rosella Ayane and England.

For Reading’s first attack via a corner, Becky Spencer did well to get to that ball at the foot of her near post header from Sanne Troelsgaaard.

But ex-Chelsea striker England is proving to be a crucial signing for Spurs and she nodded home at the far post on 30 minutes to give the home side a vital 1-0 lead.

Four minutes from the break and Spurs essentially secured their survival by notching up number two. A very good inter-player passing move in the middle of the park saw the ball released to Celin Bizet and she raced clear before slotting home past Maloney and nestling the ball into the back of her net.

The second half continued as the first and it was no surprise that the home side notched up number three and it came on 62 minutes from the right boot of England, who scooped the ball into the net from a tight angle.

With the away side well beaten, and they knew it, it was no surprise that Spurs made them pay.

Substitute Kit Graham broke free on 75 minutes and cooly slotted home a deft left-footer from just inside the Reading penalty area.

Three minutes later and Reading got a consolation goal.

A regulation corner was headed in at the near post by Justine Vanhaevermaet.

Teams: Spurs: Spencer, Turner, Bartrip, Harrop, Bizet, James, England, Ayane, Spence, Summanen, Neville

Subs: Korpela, Zadorsky, Naz, Cho, Karczewska, Percival, Ale, Graham, Iwabuchi

Reading: Maloney, Mukandi, Evans, Wellings, Eikeland, Wade, Cooper, Kith, Vanhaevermaet, Troelsgaaard

Subs: Poulter, Bryson, Rose, Harries, Hendrix, Caldwell, Alexander, Moore, Perry

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