Analysis

Hayes: This is a world-class team

Emma Hayes declared her side as ‘world class’ after Chelsea sealed a 6-1 away win at Manchester United.

A double from Sam Kerr and goals from Fran Kirby, Pernille Harder, Drew Spence and Jessie Fleming helped the Blues secure our second Barclays FA Women’s Super League victory of the new campaign at Leigh Sports Village on Sunday.

Chelsea have now netted 10 goals in our previous two games against United and Everton, and the Blues boss says her side can improve further.

‘We can get better,’ Hayes said. ‘We weren’t pleased with the passing in the first half and the dressing room knows that but when you’ve players like we have in the front areas, they take their chances.

‘As Sam [Kerr] said to me, sometimes you must deal with the moments and opportunities that present themselves and we have players who are so opportunistic and clinical.

‘They are world class. This is a world-class team.’

Player of the match, Pernille Harder doubled our lead with a spectacular solo goal on 24 minutes after Kirby’s early opener.

The Denmark captain carried the ball from the halfway line and raced into the box before providing a delicate chipped finish. Speaking in her post-match press conference, Hayes praised the Chelsea forward.

She added: ‘I saw Kelly Smith on the far side, and it reminded me of a goal Kelly Smith would have scored. I’ve seen Kelly Smith score them goals.

‘Pernille has come to pre-season with an amazing attitude, an amazing approach and professionalism to her game. She’s finding brilliant spaces, she puts in an unbelievable shift for the team in and out of possession.

‘For me this is the important message, the top players, like she is, they put in the most work to what they are doing and I’m so happy for her.’

Drew Spence and Jessie Fleming made an immediate impact within minutes of coming onto the pitch.

Spence took her tally to 49 goals for Chelsea, while Fleming netted her first for the club and Hayes was delighted with the impact of her second-half substitutes.

‘I’m so over the moon for Jessie Fleming scoring her first goal for the club. I’m delighted for Drew Spence, Bethany England, Jonna Andersson, Jorja Fox coming into the game and showing how important the impact is from the bench.

‘This is a squad game, and our spirit and ambitions continue to grow, and it was a performance that demonstrated that.’

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