Durham 0-2 Leicester City: Foxes take control in the title race

Leicester City took full control of the title race as they got a hard-earned 2-0 win at Maiden Castle.

Durham never got going and put out one of their worst performances of the season in their biggest match.

It was a double from Sam Tierney, which sealed all three points for the Foxes in a game of very few clear cut chances.

Two set-pieces outdid the Wildcats as they failed to clear their lines and mark up tightly for both goals.

Story of the game

The first-half was a cagey affair with neither side willing to take a risk because of the importance of not getting beat.

Both Durham and Leicester managed just one shot on target each in the opening 45 minutes. However, it did not take long for the game to kick into life after half-time.

Within the first minute of the restart, Leicester won a free-kick which Durham failed to clear despite having a number of opportunities.

It eventually fell to Tierney near the edge of the box who fired home a ferocious volley past Megan Borthwick.

The visitors had moved the ball well for the first 45 minutes despite not creating any chances but they took the initiative in the most important match of the season.

Leicester really stepped up their game in the second half. Five minutes later Hannah Cain found herself on the penalty spot with a free header but she put it straight down the throat of Borthwick.

Just before the hour it was Borthwick who kept Durham in the game once again. The ball fell to Charlie Devlin in the box and on the turn she fired a shot goalbound from six-yards but Borthwick managed to save with her trailing leg.

Three minutes later though there was nothing the shot-stopper could do as Tierney popped up at the back post to head home her second of the game.

It came from yet another set-piece which evaded everyone until it reached Tierney at the back post who headed home and triggered a mass pile on from the Foxes' players.

Durham began to start passing the ball well and moving Leicester about, however, it was too little too late and they will have been thinking why did it take them going two behind to start playing well?

The Wildcats' only real chance fell to Beth Hepple after Bridget Galloway managed to glide past two defenders before setting up Durham's number seven. Her effort was deflected wide for a corner which was to be the final chance for Durham.

Takeaways

Quality is key

It was the little things such as being comfortable playing out from the back and keeping their composure that separated the two sides.

Leicester are a fully professional team whereas Durham are still only part-time. So, for them to be challenging for a place in the WSL is a success in itself.

However, the Foxes quality really shone through on the day and highlights how important it is for teams to be full-time footballers now. Especially, with more attention and money being put into the Women's game.

Leicester are ready for the WSL

The Foxes had some standout players who looked a clear step above the rest, such as Hannah Cain, Charlie Devlin and Sophie Barker.

On the same day on which Bristol City were put to the sword by Chelsea, it proved Leicester are ready to challenge in the WSL.

They have a young and hungry squad who are only going to get better. When you look at how Bristol City and West ham have performed this season, it raises the question if the Foxes are better than those two sides.

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