Reading FC Women returned to third in the FA WSL1 standings on Sunday afternoon, thanks to a convincing 3-0 victory over Everton at Adams Park.
Goalless at the interval, second-half strikes by Remi Allen, Lauren Bruton and Kirsty Pearce ensured that the Toffees would return empty-handed to Merseyside.
It wasn’t through any lack of goal-mouth action that the first half ended with the deadlock intact. Courtney Sweetman-Kirk couldn’t quite lob Royals stopper Mary Earps and Mollie Green had an effort blocked for the Toffees, while Bruton was denied the opener from long range by a stunning stop from Kirstie Levell.
Less than two minutes after the restart, Allen poached the opener. Rachel Rowe’s cross was turned against the woodwork by Pearce, but the striker was on hand to convert from close range.
Chloe Kelly forced Earps into a smart stop as an Everton counter almost reaped an equaliser, while Bruton and Fara Williams each had chances saved by Levell as they tried to double the advantage.
With less than 20 minutes remaining, Reading had their second to earn some breathing-room. Jo Potter’s slide-rule pass found the run of Bruton, who outfoxed the onrushing Levell to slot into an exposed net.
And In the final five minutes, the scoring was completed from a set-piece; Rachel Furness won the first header from a corner, allowing captain Pearce to apply the finish.
Williams was the crossbar’s width away from netting number four in the final minute, but her effort from the edge of the area crashed away off the woodwork.
Up to third in the league, with three games remaining… including a home meeting with Liverpool at Madejski Stadium on Saturday 12th May!
Full-time: Reading FC Women 3-0 Everton Ladies
Reading FC Women: Earps, Rowe, Harding, Potter, Pearce, Allen (Jane 89), Furness, Williams, Moore, Bruton (Linnett 87), Chaplen.
Unused subs: Moloney, Scott, Fletcher.
Everton Ladies: Levell, Boye-Hlorkah, Turner, Finnigan, George, James, Green, Brett (Munsterman 70), Chance (Bryson 62), Kelly (Hughes 77), Sweetman-Kirk.
Unused subs: Durack, Hinds.