- Albion secure their first away league win of the season
- Laura Rafferty gives the Seagulls a half-time lead
- Ini Umotong doubles the lead just after half-time
- Hope Powell’s side take on Manchester City in the Continental Tyres League Cup quarter final on Thursday
Brighton & Hove Albion displayed their most commanding performance of the season to defeat Liverpool 2-0 in the FA Women’s Super League, and record their first away league win of the season.
Hope Powell made a number of changes following the match last time out against Yeovil Town in the Continental Tyres League Cup, welcoming back the likes of Marie Hourihan, Kayleigh Green and Aileen Whelan to the starting line-up.
It was the Seagulls who made the better start of the two teams, creating three clear-cut chances in the first eight minutes.
Firstly, Fliss Gibbons made a powerful run from the halfway line, going unchallenged as she made it into the Liverpool penalty area, but her right-footed shot went just wide of the post.
Less than a minute later, Chloe Peplow swung in a free kick from the left and found Laura Rafferty, who had a free header at goal, but the Northern Ireland international couldn’t direct it past Anke Preuss, who got down well to save.
Peplow then had a chance of her own, driving a well-hit shot from 25 yards towards goal, but Preuss was at full stretch to turn the ball round the post.
Both sides then found it difficult to create any chances as the match reached the half-hour mark, with the midfield areas seeing most of the action.
Albion then sprung into life once more, and a scramble in the penalty area saw Gibbons direct a header at goal, which Preuss turned behind for a corner.
Peplow took the resulting set-piece and found Ini Umotong, and the Nigeria international held off a defender and unleashed a powerful shot which bounced down off the crossbar into the path of Rafferty, who couldn’t miss from two yards out.
Albion started the second half with the same intensity as they did the first, and doubled their lead at the first opportunity.
The ball broke to Umotong from the midfield, with the striker clean through on goal. There were hints of offside, but as the ball last came off a Liverpool foot, the assistant referee kept his flag down and the striker placed a composed finish low past Preuss.
Just before the hour mark, Liverpool had their best chance of the match. Jess Clarke’s corner from the right found Satara Murray, but her powerful effort was blocked on the line by Kirsty Barton.
With 20 minutes remaining, Liverpool started to commit players forward in search of a goal, but were unable to create any chances of note and Albion defended well to secure the victory.
The win moves the Seagulls up one place in the league table to ninth, just three points behind today’s opponents.
The team now switch their attentions to Thursday evening’s match, where they will be back in the north west to take on Manchester City in the Continental Tyres League Cup quarter-finals, before facing Liverpool’s Merseyside rivals Everton one week from today in the FA WSL.
ALBION: Hourihan; Barton, Rafferty, Williams, Gibbons; Buet, Peplow; Brazil, Green, A. Whelan; Umotong.
SUBS NOT USED: Gillett (GK), Harris (GK), Roe, Natkiel, Legg, Perry, Simpkins.