The Aston Villa Ladies picked up their second point of the Championship season, in a game where they truly deserved more.
Words by Adam Nunn (@AdamReapa)
Edited by Regan Foy (@FindFoy)
Aston Villa Ladies’ fifth game of their Championship season saw another away game and a second trip to the home of Quorn FC, where the ladies left as winners thanks to a Kerri Welsh goal.
The Ladies came out of the blocks fast, taking the game to the Leicester City Women. With less than five minutes on the clock, Phoebe Warner played Kerri Welsh in, who’s shot cannoned into a Leicester defender.
Jodie Hutton, who has had to deal with personal issues off the pitch this week – our thoughts are with her and her family – was a vital part of the early Villa pressure and continued to be for much of the first half. She was almost unstoppable unless she was fouled.
Leicester City Women had seen very little of the ball in the opening 15 minutes, and the Aston Villa Ladies had scuppered a few chances by sending them just over the bar.
But the Aston Villa Ladies’ pressure paid off by the 19th minute, as Jodie Hutton smashed the ball into the opposition net and celebrated passionately.
Less than five minutes later, Kerri Welsh had a perfect chance and very nearly made it two with a bullet header – but Leicester’s keeper just about managed to get down to block the ball.
For much of the remaining time in the first half, Aston Villa Ladies had a number of chances but the ball just seemingly wasn’t going to hit the back of the net.
On the 42nd minute, Leicester hit a hopeful ball into the box – which ‘keeper Sian Rogers came to collect, and caught, before she was crashed into by a Leicester player and dropped the ball – resulting in a goalmouth scramble which eventually lead to a penalty for the home side.
This call allowed Leicester City Women’s Rosie Axten to level the two sides, even though Sian Rogers dived in the right direction.
A dominating first half from Aston Villa Ladies meant that the girls should have been going in at the half leading by a number of goals, but the game was telling a different story and the sides went in even.
The Aston Villa Ladies started the second half in a similar vein, and had a chance within a couple of minutes as forward Kerri Welsh directed a header towards goal – only to be stopped by the woodwork.
Just before the hour mark, Ashlee Brown replaced Hollie Gibson.
From here, the game had started to become very much a midfield battle as both sides shared possession and started moves that didn’t turn into much.
On the 71st minute, Sophie Haywood replaced Phoebe Warner.
For perhaps the first time in the game, Leicester were starting to create some pressure and had a few snap shots at Sian Rogers in the Aston Villa Ladies net, but provided nothing truly challenging.
Around seven minutes later, Tanisha Smith replaced Kerri Welsh, who could have had a hat-trick on any other day, and the club captain left the pitch to a thunderous ovation.
From here, neither side really capitalised – Leicester did have a few chances but nothing that truly stood out.
The Aston Villa Ladies have now picked up a point for the second time this season and have moved from the bottom of the table.