Bedford: Good Performance, Disappointing Result
- Tottenham Hotspur beat LCFC Women 2-1 at King Power Stadium
- Ashleigh Neville and Drew Spence were on the scoresheet for Spurs
- Lydia Bedford assessed the side’s WSL opener with LCFC TV
- There are many positives to take from Sunday’s game, she believes
The visitors left King Power Stadium with all three points on the opening day of the Barclays Women’s Super League season, courtesy of first-half goals from Ashleigh Neville and Drew Spence.
Leicester did pull a goal back early in the second half when Spence converted Jemma Purfield’s corner into her own net, but the Lilywhites held on to claim victory on Filbert Way.
Assessing the game, Bedford told LCFC TV post-match: “We felt we started well and then had a dip in the second half of the first half where we probably started to sit in a little too deep and give Spurs a bit too much respect, which led to them overloading us in different ways.
Foxes Open WSL Season With Narrow Spurs Reverse
All the goals from LCFC Women's Barclays Women's Super League defeat to Tottenham Hotspur Women at King Power Stadium.
“During that time, they score a long-distance strike and then a set play right before the half-time whistle. They are things you don’t want to be conceding, especially in that moment. If you go in at half-time at 1-0, you’ve got less of a job to do second half, which I think we showed.
“I don’t think anyone expects a player to shoot from that distance, so that definitely caught us off guard. I think the players’ response was positive after that, but we’re disappointed to concede a set play right before half-time.
“If you do your jobs right in those final moments, the job in the second half is a lot easier.”
City, who had four debutants in the starting XI - Erin Simon, Josie Green, Aileen Whelan and Carrie Jones - gave it everything in the second half, with positive signs shown ahead of their upcoming WSL games.
“There was real energy from the players,” the 35-year-old explained. “At half-time, we said to them that you’ve got to go out and show that energy. They did, so we’re pleased with that. I challenged the players that we needed to go out and win the second half and we did that too.
“I think we created more than enough opportunities to have potentially drawn the game, but we didn’t so it’s about reflecting on that and moving on for next week.
“It shows what we’ve done in pre-season. We’ve played seven games and they are very clear on their roles and responsibilities. Today, we put a player on in a completely different position that she hadn’t played in before. The fact that she went on and did that job well shows they are all listening and buying into what we’re doing.
“I’m impressed with all the players. It’s a disappointing result, but from an overall squad perspective, pleased to have got players on the pitch to show that rotation and competition and hopefully that helps us push on in training next week.”
We Showed Good Moments, Says Bedford
Reflections on LCFC Women's season opener against Tottenham Hotspur from manager Lydia Bedford.
On another day, Bedford felt City could have grabbed a second goal and taken at least a point from the game. And backed by a crowd of 2,868, she praised the support from the terraces as the Foxes went in search of an equaliser, hoping to see more of the same when Aston Villa visit Filbert Way on Sunday (3pm BST kick-off).
The former England youth coach added: “We were causing problems and they were trying to see out the result, so that’s a positive for us. It’s something we’ve got to reflect on, especially in those key moments in the second half when we’re building momentum, I think some of those free-kicks we could have avoided by how we were defending.
“We know that us keeping the ball and not turning it over and slowing the game down is going to be critical. That’s something we’ll definitely look at.
“It definitely felt a lot fuller than last season and you could hear them throughout. The noise from the fans definitely makes a difference. We were pleased to have that, it’s great to see them and we’d love them back next week.”
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