WSL heartbreak leaves bosses with mixed emotions

Sunday 12 Oct 2014
Birmingham boss David Parker and Chelsea's Emma Hayes
Despite suffering final day agony in the race for the FA Women’s Super League 1 title, Birmingham boss David Parker and Chelsea’s Emma Hayes were left feeling a mixture of pride and heartbreak.

After heading into Sunday in first place, Chelsea had to settle for second after going down 2-1 to Manchester City – Gilly Flaherty’s strike not enough to overturn Toni Duggan and Jill Scott’s efforts. The result ensuring that Liverpool lifted the trophy at the end of a dramatic day of action.

But Hayes was magnanimous in defeat with the prospect of European football providing at least some consolation.

"You can’t console the players in these moments"

Chelsea boss Emma Hayes

“You can’t console the players in these moments,” said Hayes. “We’ll reflect when we meet next week.

“But what an effort this season. We’ve got into the Champions League and have a lot to look forward to. 

"We’ll go again and we’ll be here again – the title just wasn’t destined for Chelsea this year.”

Brum supremo Parker echoed the sentiment of his Blues counterpart.

Dejected Birmingham City players after their draw with Notts County

Birmingham City players look dejected after their draw with Notts County

Kirsty Linnett and Hannah Keryakoplis salvaged a 2-2 draw for his Birmingham side against Notts County - but Karen Carney lived to rue her first-half penalty miss as, despite an avalanche of late pressure, the Blues couldn’t find that crucial winner that would have crowned them champions.

The result saw them end the rollercoaster campaign in third place, but Parker was full of praise for his troops.

“I’m immensely proud of the girls – we fought for every single inch and every blade of grass has been covered,” he said.

“We started off needing a little bit of a help from Manchester City and we were so close, it was like the Alamo in the last ten minutes. One goal has made the difference.”

"I’m immensely proud of the girls – we fought for every single inch"

Birmingham boss David Parker

Away from the title race, Nikita Parris put Everton on track for a first league win but a second half comeback ensured that Arsenal finished the season on a high – strikes from Danielle Carter, Jordan Nobbs and a Rachel Brown-Finnis own goal sealing the Gunners’ 3-1 triumph.

Keira Ramshaw’s double helped Sunderland take another step towards the WSL 2 title as they battled past a resilient Oxford United 3-2.

The Lady Black Cats sit five points clear of second-placed Doncaster Rovers Belles, who won 2-0 against Durham, with one game to go, while the Belles have two matches remaining.

Toni Duggan fires home for Manchester City

Toni Duggan fires home for Manchester City

And Sunderland manager Mick Mulhern says that whatever happens his side won’t be found wanting for effort.

“The title is still in our hands, we know exactly what to do,” he said. “We need to go to Millwall and win.

“And we know it won’t be easy, but I like to think that we have the desire to go there and have a right good go because of what the rewards are.”

Elsewhere Reading made it four consecutive wins with a 3-1 triumph over Millwall, Aston Villa beat London Bees 4-1 and Watford drew 1-1 with Yeovil.

By FA Staff