Women’s Super League: Everton 2-2 Brighton & Hove Albion – Willie Kirk baffled by card ‘mix-up’


Everton boss Willie Kirk was left “baffled” after Brighton & Hove Albion forward Kayleigh Green appeared to be cautioned twice but not dismissed in Sunday’s 2-2 Women’s Super League draw.

Kirk’s Toffees were held by Albion after Aileen Whelan scored late on to deny his side a fifth win in a row.

Green’s alleged card mix-up with referee Lucy Oliver occurred three minutes later as Everton chased a goal.

“We have to talk about it, that’s a major incident,” Kirk told BBC Sport.

“For a player to be booked twice and still be on the pitch is baffling. I think it’s only happened once in my lifetime. It shouldn’t happen.”

Whelan’s leveller came after Everton had fought back from falling behind when Rikke Sevecke turned into her own net early on to lead.

Izzy Christiansen’s 30-yard deflected free-kick and Valerie Gauvin’s header from Christiansen’s corner had put the early season high fliers in the ascendancy.

Danielle Turner hit the woodwork late on as the Blues failed to keep pace with Arsenal at the WSL summit.

“Nobody wants players to get sent off but that’s how the game goes,” Kirk added. “It would have given us an opportunity to really get at them in the last 10 minutes.

“It’s frustrating the referee made that mistake.”

The controversy over the missed red card should not take away from Brighton’s spirit and commitment, and the quality of the football, in particular for Whelan’s equaliser.

However, boss Hope Powell admitted she would have had similar concerns to Kirk if it had been her side that had been affected.

“I wasn’t sure [what happened],” Powell said. “I said to the fourth official – ‘She couldn’t have given her a yellow?’ He said she had. So the referee has to be in control of that.

“It’s hard for me to comment because you will have to ask the referee if she gave a second yellow card as I don’t know. The fact that she was on the pitch? I don’t know.

“For us, the gods were on our side today. If she did get a second yellow then I am sure, if I was Everton, I wouldn’t be pleased about that.”

Line-ups

Everton Women

  • 1MacIver
  • 2Wold
  • 20Finnigan
  • 22Sevecke
  • 3Turner
  • 17Graham
  • 12EgurrolaSubstituted forStringerat 77′minutes
  • 11EmslieSubstituted forSørensenat 63′minutes
  • 8Christiansen
  • 16Raso
  • 19GauvinSubstituted forBoye-Hlorkahat 77′minutes

Substitutes

  • 7Boye-Hlorkah
  • 13Stringer
  • 14Sørensen
  • 15Pike
  • 21Clemaron
  • 23Korpela
  • 26Clinton
  • 30Pattinson

Brighton Women

  • 1Walsh
  • 6Le TissierBooked at 45mins
  • 5Kerkdijk
  • 4Bowman
  • 3Gibbons
  • 8Connolly
  • 12O’Sullivan
  • 15GreenBooked at 48mins
  • 10Kaagman
  • 7Whelan
  • 9LeeSubstituted forJarrettat 65′minutes

Substitutes

  • 11Heroum
  • 13Stott
  • 16Brazil
  • 18Barton
  • 19Simpkins
  • 23Jarrett
  • 25Fiskerstrand

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