Man Utd Hold Champions, Arsenal Rout Reading, Spurs Make Top Flight Return

Leah Galton celebrates Manchester United’s opening goal | Lewis Storey/Getty Images

Arsenal stated their WSL title ambitions with a rampant 6-1 victory over Reading on Sunday, while Chelsea’s title defence started with a solitary point, after Leah Galton’s late strike earned Manchester United a share of the spoils.

It had been a long few months without any WSL action, but Manchester City’s routine win over Aston Villa on Saturday gave us a taste of what was to come, and Sunday’s action exploded into life right off the bat.

The day’s early game saw Arsenal set a frightening pace. Joe Montemurro’s team had their title challenge cut short by lockdown last term, but showed no signs of scarring as they put Reading to the sword. Kim Little started the party, before Dutch duo Kim Roord and Vivianne Miedema put on a show.

That pass from Leah. That finish from Kim. ?

We could watch this goal over and over again ?

— Arsenal Women (@ArsenalWFC) September 6, 2020

A hat-trick for Roord and a brace for Miedema preceded a late Danielle Carter consolation, and installed the Gunners as the division’s early leaders.

They’re closely followed by Everton, however, who were equally impressive as they travelled to Bristol City. Keen to improve on last season’s mid-table mediocrity, the Blues put four goals past their hosts, with Lucy Graham bagging a double. The 23-year-old will have written herself back into Scotland contention, tapping in at the back post before converting a penalty to put the game to bed.

Just a casual back-heel volleyed assist, Lucy Graham! ?

Cooly finished by @SimoneMagill ?#BarclaysFAWSL #BRIEVE

— Barclays FA Women’s Super League (@BarclaysFAWSL) September 6, 2020

Megan Connolly scored a magnificent looping strike as Brighton brushed aside Birmingham with a two-minute double-salvo on the hour mark, while Spurs – making their return to the top tier – were denied three points against West Ham by an Adriana Leon equaliser.

The weekend’s showpiece game came at Leigh Sports Village, where the emerging Manchester United held last season’s champions to a creditable point.

? @ManUtdWomen have equalised against the holders!

Can either team claim all three points? #BarclaysFAWSL #MUNCHE

— Barclays FA Women’s Super League (@BarclaysFAWSL) September 6, 2020

Sam Kerr was on the scoresheet early on, but despite the Blues giving world record signing Pernille Harder a late debut from the bench, it was Leah Galton who stole the show when she arrived at the back post to earn her side a deserved draw.

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