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Ireland captain helps champions Arsenal stay top of the league for Christmas

A look back on today’s Women’s Super League action.

Katie McCabe in action for Arsenal today.
Katie McCabe in action for Arsenal today.

IRELAND CAPTAIN KATIE McCabe helped defending champions Arsenal beat Everton 3-1 to finish 2019 on a high and stay top of the Women’s Super League [WSL] for Christmas.

The win extended the Gunners’ — where Louise Quinn is also on the books — lead at the summit to three points after Chelsea were held by struggling Liverpool, while Megan Campbell‘s Manchester City crushed thrashed Brighton & Hove Albion 5-0 to move up to second.

Dubliner McCabe returned to the Arsenal line-up, starting at right-back, and her work-rate was second-to-none — as it has been of late.

Dutch sensation Vivianne Miedema continued her magical goal-scoring run at Southport, bagging a brace to bring her WSL season tally to 14 — 10 of those in the past three games alone.

Captain Kim Little slotted home from the penalty spot in between Miedema’s double and while Chloe Kelly scored a late consolation for Everton, Arsenal recorded a sixth successive win.

They’ll be left worried after England striker Beth Mead suffered what looked a serious leg injury in the first half, however.

Meanwhile, Drogheda native Campbell played the full 90 for City — for whom Donegal teenager Tyler Toland also plies her trade. Steph Houghton, Ellen White, Lauren Hemp, Georgia Stanway and Pauline Bremer were all on target in a dominant showing from the Sky Blues. 

manchester-city-women-v-fc-lugano-women-uefa-womens-champions-league-the-academy-stadium Megan Campbell (file pic). Source: Anthony Devlin

Ireland defender Niamh Fahey‘s struggling Liverpool held Chelsea to a one goal a-piece draw, with Niamh Charles and Bethany England the goalscorers there.

Emma Hayes’ Blues have a game in hand on Arsenal and City despite slipping to third in the table, while a much-needed point lifted the Reds off the bottom of the table.

Elsewhere, Reading came from behind to beat Tottenham Hotspur — Ireland keeper Grace Moloney was between the posts for the Royals — while two of Sunday’s scheduled fixtures — Birmingham City v Manchester United, and West Ham United v Bristol City – were postponed because of waterlogged pitches.

The league now faces into a three-week winter break prior to the next set of fixtures on Sunday, 5 January.

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Emma Duffy

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