Liverpool 3-1 West Ham: Hosts stay level on points with Manchester United in race for top four

With West Ham lingering near the foot of the Barclays Women’s Super League table, Liverpool were afforded a golden opportunity to remain level on points with Manchester United in the race for the top four.

LIV: Laws; Matthews, Fisk, Fahey, Clark, Koivisto; Holland, Lundgaard, Höbinger; Haug, Kiernan

WHU: Arnold; Zadorsky, Tysiak, Cissoko; Smith, Gorry, Hayashi, Shimizu; Asseyi, Ueki; Snerle

The first half at Prenton Park was largely uneventful, only bursting into life shortly before the break as Leanne Kiernan and Niamh Fahey both came close to opening the scoring.

It would be Irish international Kiernan that ultimately found the opener, slotting into an open net in the 41st minute to celebrate St Patrick’s Day – but the Hammers were not happy and protested an apparent foul on Mackenzie Arnold in the buildup.

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The Hammers could have levelled before the interval through Riko Ueki, though a fine save from Rachael Laws denied the Japanese international and Viv Asseyi sent the rebound wide of the target. It would be a squandered opportunity that came back to bite them, as Liverpool doubled their lead in the 50th minute through a Missy Bo Kearns header.

Sophie Román Haug added the third goal with less than twenty minutes remaining on Merseyside, before Rehanne Skinner’s Hammers clinched a late consolatory goal through Ueki.

Liverpool remain in fifth, level on points with Manchester United ahead of a mouthwatering weekend of action. Two heavyweight derbies will see Liverpool face Everton at Goodison Park, while the Red Devils face Manchester City at Etihad Stadium.

A tenth league loss of the season sees West Ham remain 11th, six points clear of the relegation zone.