Sunderland go top of Premier League with win over Leeds

By Tony Leighton Women's football correspondent

Beth Mead scored her eighth goal of the season as Sunderland beat leaders Leeds United to go top of the Women's Premier League.

Coventry City, second in the table before the weekend, lost 3-0 at Barnet.

Bottom team Watford were beaten 2-0 at Charlton Athletic and have just one point to their name from seven games.

Nottingham Forest beat Aston Villa to climb out of the relegation zone at the expense of Reading, who lost 2-0 against Cardiff.

Leeds United 0-1 Sunderland

Leeds started the game strongly but were rocked when Mead took advantage of a 14th minute defensive mix-up to slide the ball into an empty net.

The home side continued to press, but could not make the breakthrough and by the end Sunderland missed several chances to stretch their lead.

Barnet 3-0 Coventry City

Three first-half goals were enough to give the Bees a comfortable victory.

Vicky Boardman opened the scoring with a header from a 25th-minute corner by Cheryl Williams.

And four minutes later another Williams corner led to the second goal, this one headed in by Alex Keogh.

Keogh then set up Stacey Sowden to give the home side a three-goal cushion two minutes before the interval.

Coventry improved after the break but were unable to find a way past goalkeeper Cherie Rowlands.

Aston Villa 1-2 Nottingham Forest

A late goal by Suzanne Davies gave Forest their first away win of the season.

The visitors went ahead through a fifth minute Jade Richard own goal, but Carly Davis levelled the scores 17 minutes into the second half.

Davies grabbed the clincher for the visitors 13 minutes from time.

Reading 0-2 Cardiff City

Cardiff retained the Premier League's only unbeaten record with a hard-earned victory.

Nicola Cousins gave the Bluebirds a 26th-minute lead, but they were unable to relax until Natasha Harding hit the second goal five minutes from time.

Charlton Athletic 2-0 Watford

A neat lay-off by Kim Dixson led to Gemma Bryan saw the Addicks go in front with a low 26th-minute shot.

A 25-yard shot by Kris Manktelow a minute before the interval then doubled the lead.

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