WSL team of the week: gameweek 8

Ali Rampling
Chelsea recorded a big win over Leicester in gameweek nine of the WSL
Chelsea recorded a big win over Leicester in gameweek nine of the WSL / Cameron Smith/GettyImages

The penultimate weekend of WSL action before the winter break served up big wins for sides at both ends of the table.

There were emphatic victories for both Chelsea and Manchester United - results that could be telling in a title race that could go down to goal difference - while Reading secured a huge victory in their bid to survive the drop, and Liverpool picked up their first three points since the opening day of the season.

But which players shone? Here's 90min's WSL team of the week for gameweek eight.

Goalkeeper and defenders

Ona Batlle
Batlle was United's star performer against Aston Villa / Naomi Baker/GettyImages

GK: Emily Ramsey (Everton) - Only a piece of Vivianne Miedema magic could see Arsenal past the inspired Ramsey on Saturday. She pulled off save after save to keep the Gunners at bay; a quick double stop to keep out Miedema from point blank range, and a stretching save to tip a Caitlin Foord effort over the bar were the pick of the bunch.

RB: Ona Batlle (Manchester United) - The player of the match at Old Trafford as United recorded a thumping victory over Aston Villa. Set up the game's opener with a trademark foray down the right and was on the scoresheet herself with the goal of the game, spectacularly lashing in off the cross bar. Added a second assist in stoppage time to cap a magnificent display.

CB: Faye Bryson (Reading) - Playing as one of three centre backs, the defender was a real asset going forward for the Royals with her marauds down the right flank. Bryson also helped to preserve a clean sheet as Reading recorded a vital victory over Tottenham and moved seven points clear of the drop zone.

CB: Gilly Flaherty (Liverpool) - Helped Liverpool to an important three points against her former side West Ham with a big defensive performance. Helped preserve a clean sheet for the Reds with a series of important interceptions and blocks - including a big one in the second half to keep out Lisa Evans effort.

LB: Lily Woodham (Reading) - The quality of service down either flank was a real positive for Reading during their huge win over Tottenham, and wing-back Woodham was a constant source of danger down the left with her energy, running and wicked deliveries.


Vivianne Miedema
Miedema impressed against Everton / Clive Rose/GettyImages

CM: Jessie Fleming (Chelsea) - On the scoresheet twice for Chelsea during the Blues' destruction of Leicester, netting her side's second and sixth goals with a pair of well-taken finishes from inside the box.

CM: Ella Toone (Manchester United) - A trademark Ella Toone performance at Old Trafford, setting up her side's second with a signature, perfectly weighted defence-splitting pass, before picking out Alessia Russo at the back post with a pinpoint cross for United's third.

AM: Vivianne Miedema (Arsenal) - Arsenal dominated against Everton but only a slice of genius from Miedema could beat Emily Ramsey in the Toffees goal. The Dutch international turned two Everton defenders inside out, before arrowing the ball into the top corner, and was a constant threat with her intricate link up play.


Guro Reiten
Reiten was outstanding against Leicester / Cameron Smith/GettyImages

RW: Fran Kirby (Chelsea) - Marked her first WSL start since September with a brace and an assist, teeing up Reiten for the opening goal, netting her side's third with a smart finish with the outside of her foot and wrapping up the victory by reacting quickly to lift the ball over Demi Lambourne.

ST: Alessia Russo (Manchester United) - Led the line superbly for United at Old Trafford, giving the Villa backline a tough time of it with her physicality, linking play superbly and netting her side's third at the back post after a trademark combination with Toone.

LW: Guro Reiten (Chelsea) - An outrageous individual display from Reiten, having a hand in all five of Chelsea's first half goals with four assists and really well-taken goal of her own. Her assist for Chelsea's fourth was particularly exquisite, picking out Kerr with a sumptuous, bending pass in behind.