Women's football round-up: Wales appoint Jayne Ludlow

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The race for the Women’s Super League title will go down to the final day after Birmingham and Liverpool both struck late to deny Chelsea. Rachel Williams and Eniola Aluko both bagged doubles as the WSL leaders thrashed relegated Everton 5-2 to put themselves on course for the title. However, Gemma Davidson’s strike in stoppage-time earned Liverpool a crucial point in the 3-3 draw against Arsenal, and Birmingham also kept their slim hopes alive after Karen Carney’s late effort sealed a 2-1 win over Manchester City. The Blues are two points clear of Birmingham going into the final game with Liverpool a further point adrift, but can secure the title with victory over Manchester City on Sunday.

Wales have appointed former captain Jayne Ludlow as the national team’s new manager. Ludlow, 35, currently in charge of WSL2 outfit Reading, has agreed to take over from Jarmo Matikainen, who has returned to his native Finland. She will officially start her new role in November.

i player of the week: Karen Carney (Birmingham City)

Birmingham City’s slim hopes of winning the WSL title remain alive - and for that, they have Karen Carney to thank. The England striker’s 86-minute winner against Manchester City kept her side in the hunt for the title knowing a draw would’ve mathematically ruled them out of the race. Even with a two-point deficit to claw back, Carney’s goals have enabled Birmingham to fight tooth and nail for the WSL crown. 

Moment of the week

Champions can be made in one just moment, and Liverpool Ladies displayed the kind of vigour and fight that is required to win trophies at the top level. Trailing 3-1 to Arsenal, Matt Beard’s side fought back valiantly through Nicole Rolser and crucially, a 93-minute equaliser from Gemma Davidson. Earning a point means that Liverpool, who are three points behind Chelsea, can still win the title.

They said...
"As a citizen I expect more from my country. It's incredible we are hosting the World Cup but it's a real shame we can't put on the best tournament worthy of top female athletes." Former Canada striker Carrie Serwetnyk reflects on the artificial turf argument threatening to derail the World Cup held in Canada next year.

Is stat true?
8 – Chelsea have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last eight WSL games, a run stretching back to the 0-0 draw with Notts County in May.

Look out for...

Sunday: Arsenal Ladies v Everton Ladies; Birmingham City v Notts County; Liverpool Ladies v Bristol Academy; Manchester City v Chelsea Ladies (all kick off at 2pm)