Women's Premier League: Everton win at Doncaster Belles

By Tony LeightonWomen's football reporter

Everton won 2-1 at Doncaster Belles as the Women's Super League returned to action with no sign of a hoped-for attendance boost following Team GB's Olympics heroics.

A fortnight after a Wembley crowd in excess of 70,000 cheered Team GB to a famous victory over Brazil, only 289 were at the Keepmoat Stadium.

It was one of the league's lowest gates of the season following an average of over 500 at matches during the first half of the campaign.

England Under-21 striker Toni Duggan scored both of the Everton goals before Belles midfielder Victoria Williams hit a late reply.

With three members of the Team GB squad in their starting line-up Everton controlled most of the game but created few scoring opportunities.

The closest either side went to a goal in the opening half-hour was Victoria Williams with a 20-yard drive that flew just wide.

But the visitors took the lead seven minutes before the interval, Team GB midfielder Fara Williams setting up Duggan to shoot home from 15 yards.

Duggan then forced goalkeeper Mary Earps into a good 65th-minute diving save from a well-struck low cross-shot.

And nine minutes later the striker added her second goal with a neat chip following a clever one-two with striker partner Natasha Dowie.

Victoria Williams hit a consolation goal eight minutes from time, shooting against a defender and the ball rebounding to bounce off the Donny midfielder and into the net.

The result lifted second in the table Everton to within five points of leaders Arsenal, who they entertain on Sunday.

Manager Mo Marley said: "Our approach play was very good but we were a bit anxious when we got within sight of goal.

"Getting the three points was pleasing though, and that sets us up for a game against Arsenal that we have to win if we're going to challenge for the title.

"The crowd figure was disappointing, but I think we've got lost a bit in the Olympics fever and a lot of people didn't realise the game was on.

"It will be more of an indicator against Arsenal - there'll be nine Olympians on show and hopefully that will attract a big crowd that we can build on in the future."

Defeat for Doncaster, whose injury crisis meant they had only two players on the substitutes' bench, left them bottom of the table.

Manager John Buckley said: "We're being absolutely ravaged by injuries and we're running out of players, but the girls battled well.

"We never laid down and with that sort of spirit we've got to believe we can start climbing the table in our next few games."