Khadijah Shaw is on a hot streak, scoring once again Sunday in Manchester City’s 2-1 win over Liverpool in the Women’s Super League in England.

The goal-hungry Reggae Girlz captain has now scored five goals in her last three matches having scored twice against in Manchester City’s 4-0 win over Leicester City on October 16 and then scored another brace in her side’s 3-0 win over Tottenham on October 22.

On Sunday, Shaw opened the scoring for the Citizens, who have temporarily moved up to fourth in the WSL standings after taking maximum points from the last three matches.

The opening goal came in the 21 minute when Lauren Hemp beating her marker at the edge of the box before threading a low pass through for Shaw, who slotted home into the bottom-right corner past goalkeeper Rachael Laws.

City’s lead would last all of 12 minutes when Liverpool’s Katie Stengel robbed Alex Greenwood of the ball deep inside the opponents half and found herself one-on-one with shot-stopper Ellie Roebuck. She tucked the ball away nearly to tie the score 1-1.

Shaw played a part in City’s winner after a searching run to the edge of the box after which she passes to Hayley Raso, whose shot in parried by Laws. However, Raso follows up the rebound and smashes the ball into the roof of the net to give her side another valuable three points.

City, who were winless after their first two games in the season, not have nine points from five games.

Liverpool Women defender Gilly Flaherty has revealed her heartbreak at being targeted for abuse on social media by disgruntled Reds fans, saying it "hits on another level".

The former Arsenal, Chelsea and West Ham player, who also played for the England national team earlier in her career, moved to Liverpool in July.

Flaherty, 31, says she has been "slaughtered on social media" after matches in the Women's Super League by fans of her own team.

Her comments drew a largely sympathetic response, with some Liverpool supporters insisting such critics were in the minority.

Flaherty wrote on Twitter after Liverpool's 1-0 defeat at Tottenham on Sunday: "Joining a new team is hard in the first place but to not be approved of by the fans & to just get slaughtered on social media after most games by your own fans is [heartbreaking].

"I've never cared about opposition fans doing it but when it's your own fans it hits on another level."

Chelsea manager Emma Hayes is stepping away from day-to-day activity with the Women's Super League team after undergoing an emergency hysterectomy, she has announced.

The Blues boss has suffered with endometriosis and will take a recovery period as she looks to return to full health before resuming her Chelsea duties.

In a statement, Hayes said assistants Denise Reddy and Paul Green would take temporary charge.

Hayes said: "Last Tuesday I underwent an emergency hysterectomy following my ongoing battle with endometriosis. I'm now in recovery and will need time and patience to return to full health.

"We have built a tremendous team over many years, and we've adopted a very multi-disciplinary approach so that if situations like this arise, we are capable of being able to respond to the challenge

"We have full confidence in Paul, Denise and all of the staff. We also know the team are very special, and we have no doubt they'll do everything to maintain their high standards.

"To our fans, you've had to listen to me bellowing from the other side of the pitch every week, but now I want to hear you even louder because I'll be sitting at home watching the team on the television until my return.

"I know you'll respect that my health comes first and at this time I've got to prioritise what I need to do for me. I fully expect to make a full recovery and I look forward to seeing you in the foreseeable future."

Defending WSL champions Chelsea beat West Ham in their last game and sit fourth in the table in the early stages of the season. They face Everton this weekend before kicking off their Women's Champions League campaign against Paris Saint-Germain on October 20.

Hayes, 45, has been manager of Chelsea since August 2012, leading the team to five WSL titles in that time. She was winner of FIFA's The Best Women's Coach for 2021, receiving that award in January of this year.

The Women's Super League attendance record was sent tumbling on Saturday as 47,367 fans watched Arsenal thrash north London rivals Tottenham 4-0 at the Emirates Stadium.

A high crowd at the Emirates was significantly larger than the previous record – set when 38,262 people watched the same two sides face off at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in November 2019.

Arsenal boss Jonas Eidevall said the match would represent a historic moment for the women's game on Friday, declaring: "They're not giveaways, they're not discounted, they're sold tickets.

"I think that's really special, because that means the interest there, it is for real."

Those in attendance at the Emirates on Saturday were not disappointed, as Vivianne Miedema's brace, as well as goals from Beth Mead and Rafaelle, fired Eidevall's side to a dominant win.

Miedema's tally of eight goals against Spurs is a WSL record, while Arsenal have become the first team in the competition's history to keep eight consecutive clean sheets after shutting their rivals out.

The landmark occasion represents another high-point for the women's game in England.

A record crowd for any European Championship fixture – men's or women's – was set at Wembley Stadium when 87,192 watched the Lionesses win their first major trophy by beating Germany on July 31.

Arsenal boss Jonas Eidevall believes years of effort and investment have paid off as the Gunners prepare to shatter the Women's Super League attendance record against Tottenham.

Over 50,000 fans are expected at Emirates Stadium for Saturday's north London derby, as WSL clubs seek to build on the shining success of England's home Euro 2022 triumph.

A record crowd for any European Championship fixture – men's or women's – was set at Wembley when 87,192 spectators saw the Lionesses beat Germany after extra time on July 31.

Now the Gunners are poised for a bumper crowd of their own, and Eidevall was keen to highlight there had been no fudging the numbers with the impressive ticket take-up.

"It's 50,000 sold tickets," he said. "They're not giveaways, they're not discounted, they're sold tickets. I think that's really special, because that means the interest there, it is for real.

"The investment the team has done, but also all the past generations to take us to this stage here, that is phenomenal. We want to make the most of it tomorrow, so it can happen more freely."

Champions Chelsea were stunned 2-1 by promoted Liverpool as the Women's Super League season got under way, with American Katie Stengel converting two second-half penalties.

All three goals came from the spot, with Chelsea's Fran Kirby firing home in the third minute, before Stengel equalised in the 67th minute and netted the winner three minutes from the end on her WSL debut.

It is the first time a promoted team have defeated the reigning champions in their opening match since March 2015, when Liverpool were on the receiving end of a 2-1 loss against Sunderland.

Stengel said Liverpool came into the contest against Chelsea with strong belief.

"[We felt] we could win this game," she told Sky Sports. "It's just another team out there, another 11 players, and we've prepared all pre-season, so why not believe in ourselves?"

Speaking about her second penalty, late in the game, Stengel added: "I told myself, 'Don't miss' – please don't miss – all these people will make fun of me if I miss'. I got lucky, I guess."

This round of games was intended to be the second round of fixtures, but the first week's programme was postponed following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

Liverpool manager Matt Beard echoed the sentiment that his team were a match for Chelsea, and that they deserved the result in the end.

"It's just the first game, and I felt over the course of the game that we deserved it," Beard said.

"It's great that we've started with three points at home – this was a fortress for us last year, and we made it uncomfortable and difficult for Chelsea today."

Barcelona succeeded in their push to sign Keira Walsh after using "really aggressive" transfer tactics, according to Manchester City boss Gareth Taylor.

The England midfielder, who shone for the Lionesses in their Euro 2022 trophy success, joined Barcelona on September 7.

The Catalan giants were reported to have paid a world-record fee of around £350,000 (€400,000) to secure Walsh's signature, although that has been cast into some doubt by subsequent comments from Barcelona.

Walsh left City a day before the Women's Super League transfer deadline, and Taylor said the timing was "down to Barcelona and nothing to do with us".

"I always believe that you want players who want to be here. Keira had given eight solid years of service and probably her last season developed into one of her best seasons for the club and on the international stage," Taylor said.

"When you have that and another project comes along, that was a real opportunity for her: a different league and a different country."

She pushed for the move, Taylor added. At that point City had little option but to negotiate the best possible deal.

"The last thing you want is a player who's going to stay because we made a decision to not take a world record fee and being really disgruntled; I don't think anyone really gains from that," Taylor said.

"We tried to support Keira the best we could while trying not to kill ourselves. Some of the earlier bids were of that mind where we weren't comfortable with that.

"But towards the end it was really aggressive bidding from them."

Taylor said the fee, which has not been officially disclosed, was high enough to show "we're doing something right here at the club".

He said signing a like-for-like replacement at close to Walsh's world-class level might cost City as much as they received for the 25-year-old, who has been reunited with England team-mate and former City colleague Lucy Bronze at Barcelona.

After a summer of big-name exits, with Bronze going to Barcelona and Georgia Stanway and Caroline Weir also departing to join Bayern Munich and Real Madrid respectively, and Ellen White retiring, it remains to be seen how City cope in the new WSL season, which gets under way this weekend.

On deadline day, City plugged a hole in their squad with the signing of Japan midfielder Yui Hasegawa from West Ham.

Taylor takes his team to Aston Villa on Sunday for their opener, after last week's programme of games was postponed following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

Erling Haaland and Casper Ruud are flying the Norwegian flag high at the top of their sports, with Brighton and Hove Albion Women's new recruit Elisabeth Terland inspired by her compatriots.

Norway international Terland left SK Brann for Brighton in August and will hope to make her Women's Super League debut on Friday against Arsenal.

The 21-year-old, who has 13 international caps, referenced the rapid start Haaland has made to life at Manchester City, where he has scored 13 goals in just nine appearances since leaving Borussia Dortmund.

Haaland enjoyed a reunion with his former club on Wednesday, netting a sublime acrobatic finish to take his tally to 26 goals in 21 Champions League appearances – a strike every 62 minutes on average.

With City's new recruit taking the Premier League by storm, Terland hopes to emulate her fellow Norwegian as she prepares for a new challenge in England.

"The things he's doing at the moment are sick. It's just cool to see how a player can come into a new league and come into a new team and just perform time after time," she told Stats Perform. 

"Of course, it's inspiring. Everybody from Norway is really proud of him and what he's doing. Everybody is supporting him. He's a good product of our country."

While Haaland has made a flying start at City, tennis player Ruud reached his second major final of the season at the US Open.

Carlos Alcaraz proved a step too far for Ruud in the battle for the world number one spot at Flushing Meadows on Sunday, but the 23-year-old is another compatriot serving as inspiration for Terland.

"I did watch a little bit [of the US Open final]. It was quite late. Of course, it's just as inspiring to see people doing well in [other] sports," she added.

"That makes you want to do well in sports as well. [He is] a great athlete and does it time after time as well. Hopefully, next time he will win."

Chelsea and Germany goalkeeper Ann-Katrin Berger has revealed she has been diagnosed with thyroid cancer for a second time and will begin treatment this week.

Berger was initially diagnosed in November 2017 during her time with Birmingham City, but made a full recovery and was subsequently named in the PFA Team of the Year.

However, the 31-year-old said on Tuesday that after four years being cancer-free, a recurrence has been detected in her thyroid.

"I've said before that as a sportsperson, you have to fight every day to be the best you can be and that's something I will continue to do," she said in a statement.

"I hope by sharing my journey I can help others that find themselves in a similar situation.

"I am working closely with my club doctor and specialist in London, and my treatment will start this week.

"I remain positive that my treatment will be as effective as last time, and I'm looking forward to returning to the pitch and seeing you all at Kingsmeadow and Stamford Bridge."

Berger has played a key role between the sticks for Chelsea in their Women's Super League triumphs of the past three seasons.

The former Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper, who won the WSL's golden glove in 2020-21, was also part of the Germany squad that reached the Euro 2022 final last month.

Women's club football in Europe is at "a critical juncture" but can soar to stunning new heights over the next decade, a new report from UEFA has disclosed.

Its commercial value can grow sixfold to €686million by 2033 and club sponsorship could swell to €295million by the same point, according to European football's governing body.

The developing professional leagues across Europe remain at an early stage of growth, emphasised by the fact spending on international player transfers topped €2m for the first time last year.

UEFA published its 'Business Case for Women’s Football' on Tuesday, with the women's game planning to capitalise on the success of international tournaments such as Euro 2022 by aiming to steer supporters and investors towards the clubs and leagues that in some cases are battling to survive.

The report said stakeholders have "an extraordinary opportunity to develop and professionalise women's football in Europe over the next decade by investing now" to unlock "enormous potential".

The report's findings would enable stakeholders "to make informed decisions and invest on the scale required", its authors said.

UEFA explained that previous data in this area, looking at the prospect for future growth, meant there was an "inconsistent and incomplete" picture of what the years to come might hold. It said its research and data investigations this time were "unprecedented" in their scale.

Former Germany striker Nadine Kessler, who is now UEFA's chief of women's football, hailed the game as being "on an incredibly exciting trajectory".

Kessler added: "The potential of the women's game is limitless and we believe we are on course to take women's football to heights that were unimaginable just a few years ago.

"As this report shows, now is the time to capitalise on the momentum we have created together, now is the time to get involved, now is the time to invest."

The research showed that a current fan base of 144million could reach 328million in 10 years' time. Followers were described as being broadly "diverse, progressive and young", with close to one in three fans of the women's game found to be new to football.

Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas pointed to the prospect of short-term losses for long-term gains.

Aulas, an early advocate of the women's game, said: "In the early years, there will be losses to reach a certain level and become successful. Over time, the investment will create excellent value for the club through new partners and a differentiated fan base."

That was reflected in the report stating the "majority" of leagues and teams are making a loss, relying on support from club owners or men's team budgets to remain sustainable.

Some 87 per cent of integrated clubs said involvement with women's clubs had brought about a reputational boost.

UEFA said its research showed 70 per cent of women's clubs and 50 per cent of leagues are aiming to be self-sustainable within the next decade.

Captain Leah Williamson described England's Euro 2022 final victory over Germany as "the proudest moment of my life".

A gripping showpiece at Wembley on Sunday saw England scrape a 2-1 victory after extra time, with substitutes Ella Toone and Chloe Kelly getting the goals for the hosts.

Williamson lifted the trophy as a record crowd of 87,192 saluted the first-time champions, who have been steered to glory by Sarina Wiegman, the manager who led the Netherlands to the win the European Championship five years ago.

"I just can't stop crying," said Williamson in a pitchside BBC interview.

"We talk and we talk and we talk, and we finally do it. It's about doing it on the pitch, and I tell you what – the kids are all right!

"It's the proudest moment of my life until the day I have kids I suppose, so I'm going to lap it up.

"I was advised to take in every single second because you're going to want to relive it over and over, and I'll be reliving that for a long time.

"The legacy of this tournament is the change in society. It's everything that we've done. We've brought everybody together. We've got people at games, and we want them to come to WSL [Women's Super League] games, but the legacy of this team is winners and that's the start of a journey.

"I love every single one of them. I'm so proud to be English."

As England celebrated their finest hour, Lionesses legend Alex Scott revealed top clubs in England had refused to allow their stadiums to be used for the European finals, and said any johnny-come-lately sponsorship hopefuls had probably already missed the boat.

Scott and Ian Wright, both working as pundits, spoke of their hopes for how the women's game could continue to grow, with Wright making an impassioned plea for those charmed by the England team over the past four weeks to get out to club games.

And Scott, a member of the England team who lost 6-2 to Germany in the Euro 2009 final, took a swipe at those who in her view had done women's football no favours.

Scott: "Let's remind ourselves that in 2018 we were begging people to host in their stadiums a women's game for this Euros. So many people said no. I hope you're all looking at yourselves right now because you weren't brave enough.

"I'm not standing up at corporate events in front of sponsors any more begging for them to get involved in the women's game, because you know what, if you're not involved you've missed the boat, you've missed the train. Because look at this: it has finally left the station, and it is gathering speed."

Beth Mead was named player of the tournament and won the Golden Boot, pipping Alexandra Popp on an assists tie-breaker after they finished level on six goals. Popp missed the final through injury.

But it was not Mead who was the hero in the final, as England's substitutes stepped up again.

Toone, who lobbed in a brilliant opening goal, is among the young players set to play a huge part in the future of the England side.

The 22-year-old Manchester United forward said of Sunday's success: "It doesn't seem real. I'm absolutely buzzing my head off.

"It's the best moment of my career, the best moment of my life ever. I'm absolutely on top of the world and I'm so proud to do it with these girls."

Pep Guardiola hailed the stylistic brilliance of women's football as England prepare to face Germany in the Euro 2022 final.

The Manchester City boss is recognised as a coach who encourages technical excellence, having been brought up through the Barcelona system and taken the teachings with him.

As head coach of Barcelona, Bayern Munich and latterly City, Guardiola has nurtured teams through innovation, looking for his players to produce a possession-based game.

There has been fluidity and intensity at the core of his teams, and the end result has been the emergence of some of football's most entertaining, highly skilled teams of the modern era.

He recognises excellence when he sees it, and Guardiola believes it is coursing through the women's game at present.

Sunday's final is set to be played in front of a full house at Wembley, with the tournament having already smashed previous European Championship attendance records.

"Well I think they deserve all the credit, women footballers around the world, how they rise, how they are doing incredibly good, so they deserve what they are getting," Guardiola said.

"Before, years ago, there was maybe not the media, maybe it was not being followed like it is, and it has happened because they are doing incredible things in the style, the way they play."

Given his previous Bayern allegiance, Guardiola is reluctant to pick a winner, even though a number of England's squad play for City's women's team, including Ellen White, Lauren Hemp and Keira Walsh.

Germany have won the Women's Euros eight times previously, while England have yet to be champions.

"Before, I was working in Germany, I want the best for both [teams]," said Guardiola, whose City team will face Liverpool in the Community Shield in Leicester on Saturday.

"Of course, we want a good final. England can play a good game, and it's a big success for both national teams to get to the final. Of course both will want to win it, at an incredible scenario at Wembley.

"I think the crowd will be completely full and hopefully they can enjoy a good game and the best team wins. Congratulations. It's so nice for England – arriving at the final is a big achievement."

Manchester City will welcome Manchester United to the Etihad Stadium in the Women's Super League.

The match will take place over the weekend of December 10-11, when the Premier League will be on a mid-season break due to the men's World Cup, taking place in Qatar.

It will be the third time the Etihad has hosted a City women's game, after a 2014 clash with Everton and a derby against United.

That match, in September 2019, was won 1-0 by the hosts and drew a then-WSL record crowd of 31,213 supporters.

The news comes on the back of the success of the Women's European Championship, which has taken place in England throughout July.

England take on Germany in Sunday's final at Wembley Stadium, with UEFA anticipating a record crowd at the ground for a match at the Women's Euros. 

More than twice as many fans have attended this year's tournament than the previous competition in 2017.

England star forwards Beth Mead and Ellen White will be rivals on the opening weekend of the Women's Super League season after Arsenal were handed a testing trip to Manchester City.

Mead hit a hat-trick and White scored twice as England thrashed Norway 8-0 in their second Euro 2022 group match on Monday evening. However, eyes are already turning towards another WSL campaign, which begins on the weekend of September 10-11, as Arsenal and City look to dethrone three-peat champions Chelsea.

As well as Mead, Arsenal have England captain Leah Williamson and Netherlands striker Vivianne Miedema among their rich player pool, while White is joined in City's ranks by the likes of England winger Lauren Hemp, former Lionesses skipper Steph Houghton and Jamaica striker Khadija Shaw.

Arsenal finished second in the table last year, a point behind Chelsea, with City third. Chelsea begin their quest for a fourth consecutive title when they host West Ham, while Manchester United travel to Tottenham, Everton host Leicester City, Brighton and Hove Albion welcome Aston Villa, and promoted Liverpool journey to Reading.

The penultimate round on the weekend of May 20-21 could be pivotal in determining the destiny of the title as Chelsea tackle Arsenal and City make the short trip to United for the Manchester derby.

Arsenal finish at home to Aston Villa a week later, City host Everton and Chelsea travel to Reading. Liverpool and Manchester United also go head-to-head on the final weekend.

Kelly Simmons, the Football Association's director of the women's professional game, said: "We really want to capture the momentum generated from the Women's Euros this summer, which will significantly help us take this league to the next level."

England's Ellen White insists she is relishing the pressure of leading the line at the Women's Euro 2022, but she knows she must improve her goalscoring form to keep her place in Sarina Wiegman's team.

White is England's all-time leading goalscorer, netting 50 times in 108 international appearances since her 2010 debut.

She finished as the joint-top goalscorer as England reached the 2019 Women's World Cup final, matching United States duo Megan Rapinoe and Alex Morgan with six strikes and taking the Bronze Boot, but has struggled on the domestic front recently.

White only netted four goals in 22 WSL appearances for third-placed Manchester City in the 2021-22 season and spurned several decent openings in England's 1-0 win over Austria on Wednesday.

She registered four shots totalling 0.49 expected goals in the Lionesses' Old Trafford opener, both match-high figures, but failed to find the net.

Yet White was bullish when asked whether her lack of goals was affecting her, telling a media conference: "No, I'm excited to be part of this England team.

"We've got some great talent, competition, and I'm loving every minute of playing for this team.

"Ultimately, my job is to score goals, of course. We've got some great wingers in this team and midfielders, backline, everyone. 

"I've got to be in the right place at the right time and hopefully, all the training I've done, [I] will help the team any way I can.

"I think there's always pressure to keep that number nine role. We've got some phenomenal talent, and it's super competitive, and I think that's really healthy, throughout the whole squad really.

"I think that's an amazing part of this team. We have 23 players that are so talented, and every single day in training it's super competitive and pushing each other and wanting each other to do well. I think it's a good headache for Sarina.

"She's super supportive and really helped with movement in and around the box, and the vision – she's been amazing on that front."

England take on Norway at Brighton and Hove Albion's AMEX Stadium on Monday and could clinch a spot in the knockout stages with a win, depending on the result of Northern Ireland's clash with Austria.

Meanwhile, White also offered her take on the team's request to Nike to change the colour of their white shorts due to concerns over players' periods, highlighting the importance of such conversations taking place in public.

"I think it's a really great conversation to have," she said. "We play football, we are on our periods, and definitely there has been feedback with Nike about the kit. 

"Our kit is lovely, but at times, when you are on your period, you do worry a little bit about that.

"It's important we are talking about it and made aware of what we can do to help support women when they are on their periods. It's a great conversation and one we need to continue to have really."

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