Chelsea Women thrash Bristol City 9-0 in WSL1 thriller at Kingsmeadow

Chelsea 9 V Bristol City 0

Chelsea were in ruthless mood as they smashed Bristol City 9-0 at Kingsmeadow this afternoon.

Goals from Fran Kirby, Maren Mjelde, Melanie Leupolz, Erin Cuthbert, Mille Bright, Beth England, Niamh Charles, Pernille Harder, and Sam Kerr put the West Country side to the sword and demonstrated the gulf in quality between the two sides.

Chelsea boss Emma Hayes has amassed a squad of deep quality which, to be fair, will be tested in more difficult games than this.

They put the disappointment of just getting a point last week at Manchester United behind them with a goal-fest that will send shivers down the spines of those sides looking to stay in the WSL1 this season.

The opening exchanges were full of nip and tuck short passing, but neither side fashioned a goal-scoring opportunity.

Chelsea boss Emma Hayes opted to play Sam Kerr with fit-again Beth England with Fran Kirby operating on the right.

German Melanie Leupolz fashioned the first effort on 13 minutes when she neatly kept position 25 yards out  out and let fly with a crisp, curing right-footer. The ball inched just wide of Sophie Baggaley’s left upright.

However seconds later and the Blues took the lead. A deep ball was wonderfully collected by Erin Cuthbert. She fed Kirby on the edge of the penalty area. The forward struck a low left-footer which Baggaley initially thought she held, but the ball squirmed under her body and drifted into the back of the net.

Millie Bright an Leupolz saw effort hacked off the line as the Blues took total control of the game. A powerful drive by Kerr, saw Baggaley parry the ball away to safety on 20 minutes. Ten minutes later and Ji crashed into the penalty are, only to be upended by Yana Daniels and referee Stacy Pearson was on the post to point to the spot.

Maren Mjelde smashed the ball home.

Number three came three minutes later. A free-kick almost on the left corner flag was arrows towards the far post by Cuthbert and Leupolz bullet-headed the ball across goal, and into the net.

Erin Cuthbert decided to try her luck, three minutes later and she produced a 25 yard pile-driver that sailed pst the hapless Baggaley to put the Blues 4-0 up nine minutes before the break.

But the goal-scoring just would not stop, and on 40 minutes, Leupolz put in a fierce free-kick from the right. Millie Bright rose, unchallenged and redirected the ball past the now dispirited goalkeeper to notch up number five.

There were no changes to either side at half-time.

Kirby had the first chance of the restart. A wonderful left-wing cross by Kerr found Kirby racing into the penalty area. However the England attacking midfielder could not direct the ball towards, goal, stretching all the while as the ball zipped wide.

But number six was not far behind and on 66 minutes, England striker England had the simplest of chances to tuck home from close range after Baggaley spilled a Cuthbert drive.

A triple substitution  was then made, England, Leupolz and Mjelde come off and Maria Thorisdottir,  Niamh Charles and Pernille Harder replaced them.

It took Harder seconds to demonstrate her quality when her nimble feet produced a fine save by Baggaley, but Charles with her first touch slotted home into an empty net to make it 7-0 on 68 minutes.

The Blues were not satisfied and on 74 minutes it was Harder’s turn to shoot, and she smashed the ball home with consummate ease.

Kerr then rattled the crossbar.

Drew Spence and Jess Fleming entered the fray on 81 minutes, Kirby and Ji made way.

Kerr got her reward five minutes from time when she rounded Baggaley and slotted home from close range.

They could and should have reached double figure deep into added time, but Spence somehow managed to screw the ball wide of an open goal from 25 yards out.

Teams: Chelsea: Berger, Blundell, Bright, Leupolz, England, Ji, Kirby, Eriksson, Mjelde, Kerr, Cuthbert

Subs: Telford, Thorisdottir, Ingle, Carter, Reiten, Fleming, Charles, Harder, Spence

Bristol City: Baggaley, Evans, Matthews, Logarzo, Humphrey, Daniels, Wellings, Allen, Palmer, Purfield, Mastrantonio

Subs: Haland, Bryson, Rafferty, Salmon, Bessel, Wilson, Harrison, Naomi, Layzell, Jones


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