Reading Women vs Manchester City Women. Women's Super League.
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Man City beat Man Utd to the final European spot after victory at Reading; Tottenham beat Leicester at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium; Already-relegated Birmingham win Second City derby against Aston Villa; Brighton and Everton draw 1-1
Monday 9 May 2022 00:10, UK
Manchester City clinched the final WSL Champions League spot with a 4-0 win at Reading, as Spurs signed off a successful season with a 1-0 victory against Leicester at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
At kick-off, City knew that if they lost and local rivals Manchester United won they would be pipped for third place, but City were comfortable by half-time after goals from Lauren Hemp and Khadija Shaw.
An 85th-minute goal from Ellen White and an added-time penalty from Alex Greenwood made the result safe, and means City head into next Sunday's FA Cup final against Chelsea in fine form.
It has been quite the resurgence from Gareth Taylor's side, who saw his team decimated by injury early on in the season.
But a turnaround in the second half of the campaign has seen them secure the final European place, beating local rivals Manchester United to third place after they lost 4-2 to WSL champions Chelsea.
After the game, Gareth Taylor hailed his side for clinching a Champions League place despite their horrendous start to the campaign.
"Mission accomplished," he told mancity.com. "If you think about where we were seven or eight games in, earlier in the season, to do what we've done is amazing.
"It takes a real collective to do that. Behind the scenes, the players have been great. I've been demanding of them and to go on the consecutive winning run we've been on is superb. I have massive respect for them.
"I've said it before: belief has been key, and trust in the process. They're easy words to use but they're really key in showing our identity as both people and as a team.
"We've done that. At times, people have been quick to judge us from the outside world but inside the organisation, it's been great - we've trusted each other and we've got there."
Tottenham consolidated fifth place with a 1-0 win over Leicester thanks to Ashleigh Neville's goal early in the second half.
Although challenging for the Champions League spots for much of the season, Spurs end the campaign 10 points adrift of the top four. Leicester finish their first season in the WSL two points clear of the relegation places.
Tottenham manager Rehanne Skinner told Spurs TV: "I'm so proud of the players and everything we've achieved over the course of the season. It's been tough work, we've had a lot of things to learn and the team has gelled together so well over the year.
"To finish here with three points in the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, it's a great way to finish a really good season.
"The players have bought into the vision and what we're trying to do here as a football team. As a result of that, it's got us some fantastic results and upset a few people along the way, which has obviously been great.
"We've got ourselves in and around the top three for large chunks of the season and it's all down to the work they've put in and investment they make into this team on a daily basis.
"We've pretty much cleared 10 points from last season and jumped higher up the table so it's a fantastic achievement for everyone, the whole club and I'm really pleased and grateful for the support from behind the scenes."
In East Sussex, Brighton and Everton drew 1-1. Nathalie Bjorn's penalty in stoppage time gave the Toffees a half-time lead but it lasted just seven minutes after the restart when Aileen Whelan pulled Albion level.
Birmingham, who were already relegated to the Championship, ended the season on a high with a 1-0 win over Midlands rivals Aston Villa in the Second City derby. Greek forward Veatriki Sarri netted the only goal in the 10th minute
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