Bristol City Women 0, Manchester City Women 3
Goals by Caroline Weir, Ellen White, and Sam Mewis gave Manchester City a 3-0 win over Bristol City Women.Embed from Getty Images
The result meant the Robins sank back into the WSL basement – in clear relegation danger – while Manchester City with a 10th straight win kept pace with league leaders Chelsea with a title showdown approaching in April.
Bristol City stayed in the game for a long time thanks to immense saves by Sophie Baggaley as City tried to secure a big winning margin.
Mewis was denied twice by the Bristol City keeper but poached City’s third late on after Baggaley had denied Janine Beckie.
Gareth Taylor made 3 changes to the side that beat Fiorentina in the Champions League last week.
In-form Ellie Roebuck, Mewis, and Chloe Kelly returned to the starting lineup while Karima Benameur Taieb, Rose Lavelle, and Beckie were available from the bench.
Their hosts were missing England International Ebony Salmon as they looked to pick themselves up from their Continental Cup final defeat to Chelsea at the weekend.
It was all Manchester City from the start as Kelly set up up Caroline Weir for her 7th WSL goal of the season with a cross from the right that found the Scottish international in the perfect spot for a shot that beat Sophie Baggaley after 12 minutes.
Ellen White thought she had doubled that lead 5 minutes later when she was picked out by a magnificent ball on the turn by Mewis but White was flagged offside after she rippled the netting with a fierce shot into the top corner for what would have been a superb second goal for City.
White’s diving header was just wide after Kelly floated an enticing cross in midway through the first half but got herself on the scoresheet as the supply line from the flanks kept coming in.
White’s 12th goal of the season came up after Alex Greenwood found Hemp down the left and the young winger crossed with White stabbing the ball into the bottom corner.
Mewis had a great chance for a third saved by Baggaley as City utterly controlled the first half without scoring as many goals as they would have wanted.
The Robins had a single chance in first half added time from a free kick but Ellen Jones’ shot was saved by Roebuck after City failed to properly clear.
Bristol City work hard but Sam Mewis gets deserved third goal to finish off the Robins and guarantee victory
Yana Daniels and Faye Bryson were brought on at the break for the Robins for Jones and Flo Allen but City maintained their dominance with Kelly shooting into the side netting while Baggaley had to save from Georgia Stanway.
Abi Harrison had the ball in the net for the home side but the offside flag was already up after Molly Pike’s through ball as City were duly warned against complacency.
Daniels won a free kick after she was brought down by Mewis 20 yards from goal but City cleared her free kick which never made it past the wall.
Hemp wriggled past several defenders to feed White the ball and missed the target but Scott Jackson called the action back for a foul on Hemp in the build up, winning a free kick from 19 yards out on the edge of the D but Greenwood scuffed her effort.
Aimee Palmer volleyed well wide as City’s hosts continued to try and create chances despite being under pressure.
Baggaley kept their hosts in the game with a low save from Mewis who was clean through after 66 minutes.
Harrison was withdrawn in favour of Charlie Wellings for the last 23 minutes while Palmer was replaced by Carla Humphrey.
And Demi Stokes replaced Esme Morgan after her injury layoff and Weir missed a chance to scored City’s third after a pass from Kelly.
Bristol City’s final change saw Naomi Layzell replace Ella Mastrantonio with 14 minutes to go.
Baggaley once again denied White and dived on the loose ball before Kelly could reach it while Weir had a shot block by Carla Humphrey.
Lavelle was introduced for the last 9 minutes for White, and Hemp blazed over and the American also forced a save from the Baggaley.
With 3 minutes to go Janine Beckie was introduced to the fray along with Jess Park for Hemp and Kelly.
Beckie’s shot was saved by Baggaley who was having an outstanding game but Mewis’ header on the rebound, her 10th goal of the season, sealed Bristol City’s fate in the 89th minute.
GOALS – Bristol City Women 0, Manchester City 3
Bristol City Women 0, Manchester City Women 1: 12. Caroline Weir was picked out by Chloe Kelly with a cross from the right and the Scotland International did the rest with a shot that beat Sophie Baggaley.
Bristol City Women 0, Manchester City Women 2: 30. Ellen White stabbed the ball into the bottom corner after Lauren Hemp picked her out with a cross from the left.
Bristol City Women 0, Manchester City Women 3: 89. Sam Mewis’ goal saw Sophie Baggaley finally beaten again after she blocked Janine Beckie’s chance but couldn’t stop the American from heading home from the rebound.
MATCH STATS – Bristol City Women 0, Manchester City 3
Bristol City Women: Baggaley, Allen (Bryson 46), Rafferty, Skeels, Purfield, Mastrantonio (Layzell 76), Bissell, Jones (Daniels 46), Palmer (Humphrey 68), Pike, Harrison (Wellings 67)
Bristol City Women subs not used: Haland, Collis, Wilson
Man City Women: Roebuck, Stanway, Dahlkemper, Greenwood, Morgan (Stokes 68), Mewis, Walsh, Weir, Kelly (Beckie 87), Hemp (Park 87), White (Lavelle 81)
Man City Women subs not used: Benameur Taieb, Keating, Mannion, Coombs, Davies
Booking: Stanway 75 (foul on Yaya Daniels)
Goals: Weir 12; White 30; Mewis 89
Referee: Scott Jackson