Everton Ladies 1-2 Chelsea Ladies
Everton Ladies’ search for a first Women’s Super League win of the season continues as Chelsea edged an entertaining three-goal clash at the Select Security Stadium.
Strikes for the visitors from Eniola Aluko and substitute Ana Borges cancelled out Nikita Parris’ stunning effort for the Blues.
Andy Spence’s side will feel particularly aggrieved as a Kelly Jones strike was chalked off because Simone Magill was judged to be offside.
The game started brightly as Rachel Brown-Finnis saved well from Aluko, while Chelsea custodian Christiane Endler’s casual approach was nearly punished by the alert Parris.
Aluko continued to threaten and made a chance count on 12 minutes. Her England colleague Brown-Finnis’ smart stop was only parried back into the forward’s path and she made no mistake on her second attempt.
Brooke Chaplen nearly made an immediate response against her former employers, but saw her effort go narrowly wide after a strong run and surge into the box.
Then came the moment of controversy for Everton.
A well-worked move between Magill and Jones found the latter in space, who finished emphatically. Joy quickly turned to frustration as the officials ruled Northern Ireland star Magill offside with Everton players adamant the striker was level with play.
But on 36 minutes Parris did restore parity.
The 20-year-old’s strength and purposeful endeavour was followed by a deft finish over the advancing Endler for her sixth goal of the season.
Chelsea continued to threaten and Brown-Finnis remained the busier of the keepers.
The second half continued to be competitive and Chelsea boss Emma Hayes was quick to make changes.
And substitute Borges very nearly made an instant impact, looping the ball over the head of Brown-Finnis who someone got back to claw away and keep the scores level.
But Spence’s side failed to heed that warning as an error from the otherwise flawless Gabby George allowed Portuguese star Borges to claim her first WSL goal and restore Chelsea's lead.
The Toffees continued to press but the visitors held on to claim the three points and leave the Blues bottom of the WSL.