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Chelsea pip Man City to Women’s Super League title after 5-0 win over Reading

Chelsea have been confirmed as Women’s Super League champions after winning 5-0 at home to Reading. It is the team’s second trophy of the season, following the League Cup, and they could yet end with an unprecedented quadruple.

Emma Hayes’s team face Barcelona in the Champions League final next Sunday in Gothenburg and are in the last 16 of the FA Cup, with Everton their next opponents.

Bristol City were relegated from the WSL on the final day. They needed three points at Brighton to have any hope of survival but Maya Le Tissier’s goal for the hosts after seven minutes paved the way to an eventual 3-1 win.

At Chelsea, Melanie Leupolz opened the scoring for the hosts against Reading, before two goals from Kirby gave the Blues a comfortable 3-0 lead before the hour mark. Further strikes from Sam Kerr and Erin Cuthbert confirmed the 18th win of the season, from just 22 games.

Manchester City did beat West Ham 1-0, through a goal from Ellen White, but they finished two points behind Chelsea in the final standings.

Chelsea had one hand on the title after just 70 seconds, when a half-cleared corner fell to Leupolz, whose side-foot effort beat Moloney to make it 1-0. Fran Kirby doubled their lead just before half-time with a confident high finish after tidy link-up play with Sam Kerr, and the pair combined again for Chelsea’s third, rifled in by Kirby from the edge of the box. Kirby then turned provider with a stunning lofted pass for Kerr, who finished on the volley, before Cuthbert’s close-range finish capped a perfect day for Hayes’ side.

“This is the best squad I’ve had, it’s the best title in my time here,” said Hayes. “I cannot wait for the Champions League final next weekend. We’re ready. I said to them when they picked their medals up: ‘You like winning? Good. Because you’ve got to win again next weekend.’

“I know the quality and mentality we have. I know how amazing Barcelona are, but so are we. This is always the big one, because it shows you’re consistent as champions.”

Chelsea’s win mean they have retained of the WSL title, which they were awarded on points per game last season after the campaign was curtailed. They have lost only one league match, at home to Brighton in February.

This is the fourth time in six seasons that Chelsea have finished as champions and Hayes has been in charge for all of them. Manchester City are runners-up for a fourth successive season.

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