Women's Super League: Manchester United crushes Villa to go third

Manchester United thumped Aston Villa 5-0 on Sunday in its last Women's Super League game of 2021 to take advantage of postponements due to COVID-19 outbreaks and rise to third in the table ahead of the Christmas break.

Ella Toone (right) scored a brace in Manchester United's 5-0 WSL win over Aston Villa on Sunday.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Manchester United thumped visitor Aston Villa 5-0 and Leicester City climbed off the bottom of the Women's Super League table thanks to a 2-0 home win over fellow struggler Birmingham City on Sunday as COVID-19 caused the postponement of several games.

Leader Arsenal's match against Brighton & Hove Albion, Chelsea's clash with West Ham United and Manchester City's meeting with Reading were postponed due to the virus.

United's Ella Toone notched two goals, Katie Zelem netted a penalty and Lucy Staniforth and Martha Thomas were also on the scoresheet to leave the Reds fourth on 18 points, seven behind leader Arsenal and three adrift of second-placed Chelsea.

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In London, Jessica Naz scored the only goal early in the second half as Tottenham Hotspur beat Everton 1-0 to ensure it remains third over the Christmas break on 20 points.

After a number of promising performances in recent weeks, Leicester finally claimed its first points in the top flight by beating Birmingham to leapfrog it and move out of the automatic relegation spot.

Sophie Howard curled home a brilliant opener in the first half and Sam Tierney headed a second in the 74th minute to give the promoted side a win in their 10th league game of the season.

Birmingham is now bottom on one point from its first 10 games with 12 games left to play.

The league returns on January 7 when Chelsea hosts Tottenham.

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