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  • Writer's pictureBy Paul Lagan

Harder hits brace as Chelsea romp to 7-0 thrashing of Everton




By Paul Lagan at Kingsmeadow

Chelsea 7 v Everton 0

Pernille Harder snatched a brace as Chelsea went on a goal rampage to hammer shell-shocked Everton 7-0 at Kingsmeadow this evening with the only downside the loss through injury of star striker Sam Kerr.

Chelsea leapfrog Manchester City into second place in the WSL and are now four points behind Manchester United but the west Londoners have two games in hand.

Guro Reiten set the ball rolling - literally on nine minutes cutting a venomous left-footer into the back of the net.

Kerr notched up her customary goal - a bullet header on 25 minutes.

She then went off having sustained an injury and could be a doubt for Wednesday League match against Leicester City and possible the FA Cup final on Sunday against Arsenal.

Her replacement Harder took 30 seconds to hammer home number three with her first touch.

Two strikes just before half-time from Sophie Ingle and Jessie Fleming confirmed the three points.

A load of substitutions by both sides robbed the game of a flow, but to be honest both sides were more than content to see out the second 45 minutes with minimum of fuss - but Chelsea are Chelsea and still had some scoring to do and reduced United’s positive goal difference to six.

But Harder decided as a striker, she should do her bit and after a lovely flowing passing move, she side-footed home from close range. Johanna Rytting Kaneryd could have made it seven late on but her run and shot saw the ball rebound off the far post and cleared.

But it was Cuthbert who decided to get in the scoresheet, slotting home from just inside the Everton penalty area on 90 minutes.

It was an another slow start for the west Londoners - the only effort in the Everton half came on six minutes when Kerr was offside to a Jessie Fleming through ball.

But when they got the ball to their feet, the change in the game was almost instant.

On 12 minutes, Reiten, up to then content to play the low-risk pass back to keep possession, latched onto the ball on the edge of the Everton penalty area.

The Norway winger then produced an arrow of a left-footer that cut right across Courtney Brosnan with such pace, she had no time to react and the ball nestled into the back of her net before she could move.

On 25 minutes it was another perfect goal for the reigning champions.

Jessie Fleming slotted the ball Reiten who slipped the ball over the Niamh Charles on the left. She produced an inch-perfect deep cross to the far post where Kerr had all the time in the world to plant a powerful header into the net.

Kerr was replaced on 33 minutes after an injury and her replacement Harder thumped a mighty left-footer home to make it 3-0 with her first touch of the game, 30 seconds after coming on.

Sophie Ingle and Fleming produced two power shots to end the first half 5-0 up - five shots on target, five goals.

Head coach Emma Hayes opted to rest a couple of players ahead of Wednesday’s league match against Leicester City.

On came Lauren James and Alsu Abdullina - off went Reiten and Eve Perisset. Rytting Kaneryd should have scored after James’s blistering run on the left set the midfielder up perfectly, but she scuffed her effort past the Everton goal.

Erin Cuthbert replaced Jelena Cankovic on 62 minutes. And nine minutes later Charles was given a rest for Jess Carter.

Brosnan produced a near post save on 75 minutes to tuck the ball away for a corner after Harder’s header looked like making it six.

A fabulous team goal nine minutes from time summed up the extraordinary finishing power of Chelsea.

A key part of the long sequence of passing saw James arrow a ball to Cuthbert on the left. She zipped down the line and cut the ball across to Harder who side-footed hime with aplomb.

It was Cuthbert who made it seventh heaven for the Blues with a low drive that zipped into the far corner of Brosnan’s net.


Teams: Musovic, Ingle, Reiten, Perisset, Eriksson, Fleming, Mjelde, Rytting Kaneryd, Kerr, Charles, Cankovic

Subs: Berger, Carter, Leupolz, James, Cuthbert, Harder, Abdullina

Everton: Brosnan, Venetian, Sevecke, Bjorn, Wheeler, Bennison, Sorensen, Finnigan, Galli, Snoeijs, Holmgaard

Subs: Ramsey, Christiansen, Maier, Holmgaard, Stenevik, Wilding

Referee: Lisa Benn


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