Wilkinson and Pharoah doubles help Saints Women to big win over Reading

KATIE Wilkin­son and Sophia Pharoah both scored twice as Saints Women thrashed Read­ing 5–0 in the Cham­pi­onship at St Mary’s.

The vis­i­tors strug­gled to live with Marieanne Spacey-Cale’s side, who led 3–0 at the break­through Wilkin­son’s brace and Ella Mor­ris’ calm fin­ish.

Pharoah struck twice in the sec­ond half on an after­noon where Saints could have even scored more.

With Sun­der­land and Crys­tal Palace drop­ping points, the hosts are still right in the mix for pro­mo­tion.

Spacey-Cale made just one change from the Saints team that lost 1–0 at Sun­der­land a fort­night ago — with Pharoah replac­ing Alice Grif­fiths in the line-up.

Mor­ris almost opened the scor­ing when her run to the edge of the penal­ty area result­ed in her prod­ding a shot just wide of the post.

Spacey-Cale’s charges deserved­ly took the lead after 17 min­utes when Megan Col­let­t’s cross was head­ed in expert­ly by Wilkin­son.

A great team move then end­ed with Mor­ris slot­ting in a sec­ond goal for the hosts after Wilkin­son’s clever flick found the Eng­land under-23 inter­na­tion­al.

With 10 min­utes remain­ing in the first half, Saints added a third when Wilkin­son nod­ded in Atlanta Primus’ deflect­ed cross — for her eighth Cham­pi­onship goal of the sea­son.

The for­ward almost com­plet­ed her hat-trick moments lat­er but her excel­lent curl­ing effort went just wide.

Pharoah got her name on the score­sheet ear­ly in the sec­ond half when Read­ing failed to clear the ball away and the 23 year old struck the ball into the bot­tom cor­ner.

Pharoah then made it 5–0 to the hosts on 67 min­utes as she smashed the ball into the top cor­ner after it had bro­ken to her on the edge of the box.

The home side were able to com­fort­ably see out the rest of the game. Up next, Saints trav­el to Black­burn Rovers on Sun­day, March 24, in their next match. 

Saints: Ren­dell; Col­lett (Wynne, 82), Mott, Peake, Pur­field; Mor­ris, Primus (Grif­fiths, 68), Kendall, Pike (Lloyd-Smith, 68); Pharoah, Wilkin­son (Thomp­son, 82)

Unused Subs: Haa­land, Raf­fer­ty, Milne

Read­ing: Orman; Roberts (Jarvis, 72), Sta­ple­ton, Dug­dale, Coop­er (Smith, 62), Wade; Hous­sein, Flan­nery, Est­court; Woo­ley (88), Per­ry (Longhurst, 62)

Unused Subs: Burns, Marashi

Ref­er­ee: Lau­ren White­man

Goals: Wilkin­son 17′

Mor­ris 27′

Wilkin­son 35′

Pharoah 54′

Pharoah 67′

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