LCFC Women

LCFC Women Boost Survival Hopes With Birmingham Triumph

LCFC Women secured a crucial 2-1 victory over Barclays FA Women’s Super League rivals Birmingham City at St. Andrew’s Trillion Trophy Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
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Two switches were made to the side that beat Tottenham Hotspur in the Vitality Women’s FA Cup last weekend, as Sam Tierney and Esmee De Graaf came in for Georgia Brougham and Sophie Barker, with Abbie McManus taking the captain’s armband.

The visitors started on the front foot with Jemma Purfield's early free-kick being met and nodded wide by McManus, before the offside flag was raised. Deliveries into the box continued when Freya Gregory picked out Jess Sigsworth in the middle, though a deflection took her header wide.

Purfield then went for goal herself from a free-kick positioned 25 yards out, curling it narrowly wide of the far post.

The game turned when Sigsworth took the ball beyond Birmingham’s onrushing goalkeeper Emily Ramsey, who was adjudged to have taken the forward down in the penalty area, leading to Ramsey being sent off. Sigsworth picked herself up and calmly slotted the resulting spot-kick past substitute ‘keeper Lucy Jones.

The lead could have been quickly doubled when Gregory found Shannon O’Brien in the middle and her turn and shot flew over the crossbar.

Leicester were two to the good on 37 minutes, when Purfield’s in-swinging corner flew into the roof of the net after bouncing right in front of the 'keeper, capitalising on their player advantage to great effect.

It might have been even better before the break had Tierney found the target when the ball fell to her after Sigsworth’s shot was blocked, or if Gregory had found the right side of the net when taking aim from the left.

The home side came out fighting in the second period, forcing Demi Lambourne into her first work of the afternoon to palm away a fierce long-range strike from Veatriki Sarri and then clear before Jade Pennock could get to the rebound.

The Foxes remained on the hunt for further goals of their own as Gregory’s cross from the left caused havoc in the penalty area and eventual fell to O’Brien, who sliced her half-volley over the crossbar.

Sophie Howard was then denied, meeting Purfield’s latest set piece in the box, but finding bodies in the way of her effort.

Natasha Flint was soon into the action, in place of O’Brien, but it was her strike partner Sigsworth who set up the next opportunity, backheeling a pass into the path of Molly Pike, though the midfielder was unable to slot home her second goal for the Club.

Tierney then got to the byline and cut the ball back for Flint who was waiting in the middle and came within a lick of paint of increasing the advantage, watching the ball cannon back off the post.

There were signs of danger when Pennock headed Lucy Quinn’s corner into the side-netting and her namesake Louise was on hand to give Birmingham the lifeline they craved with five minutes of normal time to play. Sarri’s cross was headed in at the back post by the Blues skipper to set up a nervy finish.

Barker and Paige Bailey-Gayle added fresh legs in midfield and attack for the final minutes, ahead of a Foxes debut for loanee Esther Morgan, whose late cameo helped see out the game.

The three points could have been wrapped up in stoppage-time when Sigsworth rounded the ‘keeper and hit the post, before Bailey-Gayle’s rebound was headed off the line, though Leicester were still able to claim a a vital victory.

Major moment… 

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Jess Sigsworth

City's No.9 slotted away her penalty, netting a second WSL goal of the season in the process.

The first goal was always going to be key and the fact that Blues ‘keeper Emily Ramsey was sent off in the process, meant it was advantage Leicester and they were able to largely control the game from the moment Jess Sigsworth tucked her penalty into the net.

Who impressed?

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Sam Tierney

Sam Tierney was a solid midfield presence for the Foxes throughout.

Sam Tierney became a key presence in the middle of the park winning almost every loose ball and starting attacks with precise passes. The back five are also worth a mention for their tireless work to keep the hosts at bay for most of the afternoon.

Where do we stand?

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LCFC Women

The team celebrate Jemma Purfield's stunning second goal.

The Foxes remain in 11th but crucially move onto nine points, five clear of Birmingham City at the foot of the Barclays FA Women’s Super League standings after 14 fixtures.

Coming up… 

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Jess Sigsworth

Jess Sigsworth wheels away in celebration after her spot-kick.

Leicester are back at Pirelli Stadium next Sunday, facing West Ham United in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League (2pm kick-off).

The details…


City: Lambourne; Howard, McManus (c), Plumptre; De Graaf, Tierney (Morgan 90+2'), Pike (Barker 81'), Purfield; Sigsworth, O’Brien (Flint 66'), Gregory (Bailey-Gayle 81').

Subs not used: Harris, Boddy, Scofield, Devlin, Goodwin.

Goals: Sigsworth (pen) 29’, Purfield 37’.

All times GMT.

Leicester City Crest





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