Chelsea Ladies 4-0 Birmingham City Ladies
Record signing Fran Kirby came off the bench to score on her debut as Chelsea moved back to the top of the Women’s Super League with victory over Birmingham City.
Despite having Gemma Davison sent off in the first half for two bookings, the second for simulation, the Blues eased to victory to leapfrog Sunderland, who drew 2-2 with Liverpool, and Arsenal, who lost 3-2 to Manchester City, to go top.
Eni Aluko had already put the Blues, fresh from last weekend’s FA Cup triumph, ahead before Davison’s dismissal, but Gilly Flaherty still doubled their lead before the break.
Aluko added another from the penalty spot and Kirby then rounded off the scoring, a goal assistant manager Paul Green expects to be the first of many.
“It was tremendous for Fran to come off the bench in her first appearance for the club and score the goal that sealed the victory,” he told the Chelsea website.
“We were never in any doubt once she got into that position she was going to finish because she’s such a composed finisher.
“I’m sure it’ll be the first of many goals she’ll go on and score for the club.
“It was a really professional performance especially after we went down to 10 players. Full credit to everyone involved.
“We paraded the cup at the Bridge on Wednesday which was fantastic and then the focus switched to the league campaign from training on Thursday.
“We carried that through, we stuck to the game plan and everyone put in a really good shift. We were worthy winners.”
Chelsea face Arsenal and Watford in the Continental Tyres Cup next Sunday and Wednesday, before a crunch league tie with Arsenal on August 23.
Feature image of Fran Kirby with manager Emma Hayes courtesy of Chelsea FC, with thanks