#YellowSport Women’s Football Round-Up

West Ham United

West Ham will spend the international break in the recruitment process after announcing the departure of manager Matt Beard.

The East Londoners took their frustrations out on Charlton during the week, securing top spot in theory Continental Cup group with a 4-0 victory over their capital rivals.

Having spurned numerous opportunities before slipping to Rianna Jarrett’s sucker punch for Brighton in last Sunday’s FAWSL clash at Victoria Road, Beard had explained to www.whufc.com “We’ve had some really good chances and for whatever reason, we’ve snatched at it or not made the right decision or we’ve had an extra touch, but I can’t change it.”

Goalkeeping coach Billy Stewart and first-team coach Paul McHugh have been placed in interim charge while Beard’s successes is identified.

Tottenham Hotspur

Despite mounting FAWSL frustrations, Tottenham provided a notable performance against chief rivals, Arsenal, at Meadow Park in what was a pulsating Continental Cup clash.

 Ria Percival and Shelina Zadorsky both found the net as Spurs twice came from behind to force a 2-2 draw. And despite the Gunners claiming a bonus point by edging the penalty shootout that followed, the Lilywhites would have taken plenty of encouragement from the contest. 

“I’m so pleased that the performance has finally come together,” Head Coach Karen Hills, told www.tottenhamhotspur.com.

“We’ve seen it in the girls time and time again in training but the performances were obviously not quite there, but I thought tonight we were absolutely fantastic. 

“We worked so hard in the first half to restrict their chances, we were concentrating, working really well together and obviously going into the break we were disappointed. Coming out in the second half, I thought we had the belief to go on and actually win the game. I’m really pleased for the girls and it’s just unfortunate that we couldn’t finish it in normal, open play.

Hills added: “I think that performance should kick-start us – that’s the standards we should be setting. We all should have the belief now that we can actually do it and perform at this level and we’ve shown it against a really good side in Arsenal tonight. I thought the second-half performance was some of the best football I’ve seen us play for a long time and we caused Arsenal problems, which is always good to do.”

Arsenal

The Gunners head into the international break with plenty to think about having surrendered top spot in the FAWSL as well as seeing their Continental Cup participation concluded following a pulsating North London derby draw with Spurs.

Arsenal displayed plenty of panache, but late goals conceded in each of their last three will be a concern to boss, Joe Montemurro. 

Nevertheless, Montemurro focused on the positives, telling www.thefa.com: “The first half was very good, one of the best halves of the season, we were in complete control. But when you start tinkering with personnel, it has an effect. All credit to Tottenham they pushed us back and got the rewards.

“We go in to play every game in the best possible manner, and we obviously wanted to win. 

“It was always going to be tough to get through to the next round with the amount of goals that we needed and relying on results in other groups, so we did have an eye on making sure we used it as a game where

“We could bring players back in and starting to get minutes, players coming back from rehab, and also keeping an eye on players that are going on national duty. So I think there were both aspects of that.

Chelsea

Despite the postponement of their midweek trip to London City Lionesses, Chelsea can look back on a satisfying few days after salvaging a late FAWSL draw at Arsenal, then booking their Continental Cup passage after the Gunners and Spurs drew at Meadow Park.

Boss, Emma Hayes, was particularly pleased with the point picked up at Arsenal, particularly as her side had fallen behind so late in the contest: “Full credit to Joe Montemurro’s team, they did really well and although we weren’t at our best, we didn’t lose the game,” she told www.chelseafc.com.

“I’m super proud of that because I know it never goes according to plan.

“I’m happy to pick the point up in the end.”

Brian Jeeves

Email: [email protected]