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Football - 14. October 2014.

FIFA News-Liverpool Reds triumph, Frankfurt shocked


Rarely has there been a more dramatic finale to a league season than that witnessed on the weekend in England as Liverpool defied the odds to retain their crown. There were vastly contrasting results for some of Europe's big guns as continental competition kicked into gear. FIFA.com also reviews some curious results in Australia, and the new season opening in New Zealand.

England: Reds retain crown amid drama
Liverpool retained their English league title on goal difference amid a dramatic conclusion to the English season. The Reds started the final day in third and needing three results to go in their favour. Liverpool somehow overhauled Chelsea and second-placed Birmingham, finishing equal on points with the Londoners but two goals clear. Liverpool, who are unbeaten since July, did their part by easing to a 3-0 win over Bristol Academy. Chelsea started the day as leaders but slipped to a 2-1 defeat against Manchester City who triumphed thanks to a Jill Scott strike, before a sensational volley from Toni Duggan proved to be the winner. Birmingham slipped to third with a 2-2 draw against Notts County, where a winner for the midlands team would have been enough to win the league.
Top three: Liverpool, Chelsea (both 26 points), Birmingham (25)

UEFA Women's Champions League: Varying form for continental elite
Some intriguing scorelines marked the round of 32 action in the UEFA Women's Champions League during midweek. The continent's big names entered the fray to varying degrees of success. Holders Wolfsburg secured a tough 1-0 first-leg win at Norway's Stabaek thanks to a lone second-half strike from Nilla Fischer. Lyon were comfortable 5-0 victors at Brescia, while Paris-Saint Germain won 2-1 at Twente. There was a shock, however, in Kazakhstan as home side BIIK-Kazygurt secured a famous 2-2 draw against the star-studded German outfit 1.FFC Frankfurt, thanks to an injury-time equaliser from Nikoleta Nikolic.

Australia: Wanderers revive, more glory for Perth
Western Sydney Wanderers achieved one of the great upsets in W-League history with a 2-1 victory over two-time champions Brisbane Roar. Just a week after suffering a 10-1 defeat, the youthful Wanderers somehow outlasted a Roar side featuring seven Australian internationals who also had reigning FIFA Women's World Player of the Year Nadine Angerer in goal. Perth Glory continued their perfect start to the season with an impressive 3-0 win over Canberra United. Matildas skipper Kate Gill scored twice to take her tally to ten from five games. However, it was unheralded Melbourne Victory midfielder Amy Jackson who took the goalscoring honours, scoring a second-half hat-trick in a 4-0 win over Adelaide United for the champions.
Top three: Perth Glory (15), Sydney FC (13), Melbourne Victory (10)

New Zealand: Home is where the heart is
The new season commenced in New Zealand with success for home teams being the recurring theme. Grabbing a share of the headlines was New Zealand striker Helen Collins who started her campaign in goalscoring form ahead of the upcoming FIFA Women' World CupTM qualifiers by grabbing a hat-trick, and lifting Waikato Bay of Plenty to the early lead thanks to a 4-0 home victory over Central Football. Defending competition champions Mainland Pride made a winning start to their title defence with a dramatic stoppage time winner from Megan Shea for a 2-1 victory over the New Zealand Development team, which featured a host of U-17 and U-20 national team players.

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