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Liverpool midfielder scores AND gets sent off in 1st league win of 2024


On an afternoon marked by Ceri Holland’s performance, Liverpool Women held on to beat Brighton Women 1-0 and claim their first WSL win of 2024.

Brighton Women 0-1 Liverpool Women

WSL (14), Broadfield Stadium
February 18, 2024

Goals: Holland 53′

Sent off: Holland 90+3′ (two yellow cards)

Liverpool’s win at Brighton puts them just two points behind Man United, who lie fourth in the WSL table. It wasn’t a comfortable win, however, against relegation-threatened Brighton.

Though the home team sat second bottom of the WSL under new interim manager Mikey Harris, Brighton started the game well.

After surviving early set-pieces threat, the Seagulls pushed Liverpool back, and it’s fair to say that Brighton, playing under their fifth manager since the start of last season, were playing better.

Having already hit the woodwork once, Brighton then hit the crossbar in injury time of the first half.

After Sophie Roman Haug saw a header glance just wide of the post, Brighton quickly went up the other end and almost scored when Poppy Pattinson’s cross-cum-shot bounced off the bar.

At half time, neither side made a substitution but a change did come in the form of the referee, as Emily Heaslip took over from the injured Amy Fearn.

Like the referee, the momentum changed at half time. Whereas the Reds had struggled to play out from the back, the hosts were now struggling in the same respect.

Liverpool’s high pressure paid off just eight minutes into the second half, when Holland excellently controlled a loose pass from goalkeeper Sophie Baggaley.

The Wales international made no mistake with her finish, putting the ball to the ‘keeper’s bottom right from about 12 yards out.

Just before the hour mark, manager Matt Beard made a double substitution, which saw Missy Bo Kearns return to action after a spell out through injury.

In an attacking move, she came on for Marie Hobinger, while Leanne Kiernan came on for Melissa Lawley.

Beard made another double substitution with 20 minutes remaining, and Brighton almost scored moments later as Elisabeth Terland’s cross just evaded Katie Robinson, who had the goal gaping.

Liverpool’s dominance at the start of the second half quickly evaporated and Brighton had the momentum in the latter part of the match.

It was arguably the Reds, though, who had the biggest chance in the final minutes, with Emma Koivisto missing the target from close range as she threw herself at the ball at the back post.

Injury time also saw the goalscorer, Holland, get sent off for a second yellow card offence. She didn’t have too many complaints as she left the pitch.

She will now miss the Reds’ next match, after the international break, against Aston Villa.

Player of the match: Grace Fisk

Liverpool Women: Laws; Koivisto, Fisk, Fahey (Clark 72′), Bonner, Matthews (Daniels 72′); Nagano, Holland, Hobinger (Kearns 59′), Lawley (Kiernan 59′); Roman Haug

Subs not used: Micah, Lundgaard, Van de Sanden, Enderby

Next match: Aston Villa (A) – WSL – March 3, 2024, 2pm (GMT)