D Cooper ‘4
Taylor ’28, ‘75
- Amy Taylor (2), Deanna Cooper, Lucy Somes and Kirsty Barton all on target
- Olivia Markovic scores an equaliser for Keynsham
- Albion remain second and three points behind Portsmouth
- The Seagulls must beat Keynsham again next week to have a chance of winning the title
Brighton & Hove Albion women took the race for the Premier League Southern Division title into the final game of the season following a 5-1 victory over Keynsham Town.
A brace from Amy Taylor, along with a goal each from Deanna Cooper, Lucy Somes and Kirsty Barton were enough to secure the three points in Somerset.
Portsmouth remain three points clear at the top of the table following a 3-1 win over Queens Park Rangers. Albion must now beat Keynsham at home next week and hope that West Ham United can secure victory away at Pompey in order to clinch the title.
Albion took the lead after just four minutes, when Cooper headed home Sophie Perry’s in-swinging corner at the far post.
The Seagulls continued to work a number of openings in the early stages of the game; Taylor saw her diving header cannon off the crossbar after Perry’s cross to the far post, before Somes’s sliding effort also rebounded off the woodwork.
But it was Keynsham who struck next when Olivia Markovic took advantage of some space on the edge of the box and fired a shot past Faye Baker in the 24th minute.
Baker was called into action again just moments later to save Leanne Lapham’s low drive, but Albion retook the lead in the 28th minute thanks to Taylor. Jay Blackie played a perfectly-weighted pass into the forward, who coolly slotted home past Elena Pasare.
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Charlotte Gurr then almost added a fourth Albion goal in spectacular fashion, as her strike from distance clipped off the top of the crossbar.
Barton effectively ended the game as a contest on 54 minutes, tapping the ball home from close range following some excellent link-up play between Fliss Gibbons and Gurr.
Perry had been a key attacking threat throughout the game and she could have put her name on the scoresheet, only to be denied by Pasare’s legs following a shot from inside the area.
Gurr had another chance to extend Albion’s advantage, while Perry was involved in the thick of the action again when her low drive was saved.
Taylor scored her second and Albion’s fifth of the afternoon after firing a superb, angled strike past Pasare after 75 minutes to complete the scoring.
The defender-turned-forward could have completed a memorable hat-trick just a few minutes later, but headed wide of the near post as Albion claimed a comfortable victory.
ALBION: F Baker; Perry, Ashton-Jones, E Baker (C Cooper 75), D Cooper, Gibbons; Barton, Blackie, Gurr; Taylor, Somes (Rowe 71). Subs not used: Boswell.