It’s been a quite week in the FAWSL with just a single game being playing in FAWSL one; it was a game that affected both ends of the table as leaders Manchester City women extended their lead at the top to ten points with a 4-0 away win at bottom side Doncaster.
It took a mere 12 seconds for the visitors to take the lead. Belles’ skipper Leandra Little gave the ball away deep in Doncaster territory to Isobel Christiansen. She then played the ball out wide to Georgia Stanway whose cross was headed home by the unmarked Jane Ross.
City added the second on 15 minutes when the Belles failed to clear a corner allowing Christiansen to fire the ball home. To their credit Doncaster did dig in after the second and slowly grabbed a foothold in the game. They hit the post though a Christie Murray effort but the rebound fell to City who were able to clear.
City made the points safe on 62 min when Lucy Bronze headed home the 3rd from a Toni Duggan corner. The league leaders completed the scoring in the 89th minute with the best goal of the night courtesy of a fine strike from outside the box by Daphne Corboz.
Manchester City look every bit the champions elect. They sit 10 points clear at the top of the table, unbeaten in the league, and know that 3 more wins from their remaining 4 matches will guarantee them the title. In the 12 games they have played they have rattled in 30 goals and only conceded 3. Chelsea, who are ten points back, do have two games in hand on the leaders but have a much worse goal difference. The sides meet in Manchester on September 25th in a game that could well decide the destiny of the 2016 FAWSL title.
Doncaster on the other hand have an uphill battle to avoid the drop. However despite having no points from eight matches they are only 6 points behind Sunderland (who they have 4 games in hand on) and Reading who they have 2 games in hand on.
Belles midfielder Emily Simpkins remains upbeat however. Speaking to Sports International she had this to say “Togetherness will pull us through we still believe and we will believe that” And “The position we are in; we are not worried because we know the results will come”.
Doncaster face Notts County, Reading, Liverpool, Arsenal and Sunderland all at home with Arsenal, Liverpool and Reading all away. If they show the fight and grit they did in the second half and cut out the individual errors then they still have a fighting chance of staying up this season. It may not be pretty at the bottom but it will certainly be exciting.