Aston Villa Women lost for the first time this season – but in the Continental Cup against fellow League Leaders Durham Women.
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Aston Villa Women faced fellow league leaders Durham Women in the Continental Cup group stage this afternoon, making five changes from their 6-0 demolition of Crystal Palace Women last weekend.
Jade Richards found her first start of the season, with Emily Syme, Shania Hayles, Phoebe Warner and Keri Welsh all stepping up for this cup game.
Aston Villa had their first chance in the seventh minute with an Amy West free-kick which was collected easily by Durham ‘keeper Borthwick. The away side had another few chances following this, with Shania Hayles cutting inside and gracing a shot onto the post, and Emily Syme breaking into the box but firing wide.
In the 14th, Durham had their first goal of the game, as a fumble for the ball in the Aston Villa Women box saw Molly Sharpe poke the ball home for the home side.
Durham managed to take the game by the reigns at this point, with Megan Bell hitting the bar shortly after.
By the 26th minute, Durham had doubled their lead as a clearance from the back and a through-ball from Beth Hepple fell to Molly Sharpe, with the number 8 making no mistake and burying to extend the distance between the two sides.
Sian Rogers was making a number of emphatic saves for Aston Villa Women, keeping the scoreline at a level where the away side could come back.
The 39th minute saw Durham able to clear their lines after an Amy West free-kick caused their defenders an issue.
The early part of the second half saw Aston Villa Women dominating and controlling a lot of the ball, and included a few chances – namely one from Emily Syme which was saved by Megan Borthwick.
The 65th minute saw Durham almost look to put the game beyond Aston Villa as they scored their third, with Abby Holmes scoring off the back of a corner.
At this point, winger Sophie Haywood replaced Phoebe Warner, before Elisha N’Dow and Shania Hayles were replaced by Marisa Ewers and Melissa Johnson in the 69th and 78th minutes.
Jade Richards had an opportunity for Aston Villa to get a goal back in the 82nd from a corner, but her effort bounced off the bar.
Nadine Hanssen also had an effort just before the 90th, but her header was wide.
The Villans recorded their first loss this season – albeit in the cup. They still have games against Liverpool, Coventry United, Blackburn Rovers and Sheffield United to play.