Aston Villa Ladies FC
Sat 22 April 2017
U16 and over 65: £1.00
Tickets can be purchased at the ground.
Aston Villa and London Bees are aiming to bounce back
Villa and Bees meet as they go looking to return to winning ways in Spring Series
Aston Villa will go looking to take the sting out of their first defeat of the season when they host London Bees in the FA Women’s Super League Spring Series this Saturday.
Villa had made an unbeaten start to the new spring tournament but fell to a 3-0 loss on the road at Everton in their last outing.
Meanwhile, the Bees also head to the Lamb Ground in Tamworth with a return to winning ways on their mind after they were bested by Millwall Lionesses last weekend.
Villa began their Spring Series campaign with a 3-2 victory over Watford, surviving a late fightback from the Hornets after leading 3-0, and two stalemates followed, with Joe Hunt’s side drawing 1-1 with Millwall and 0-0 at Oxford United.
Following their FA Cup exit to Sunderland, Villa bounced back with a 3-1 home success over Brighton & Hove Albion – but then came that Toffees reverse.
After playing six matches, the Bees are joint-leaders of the early Spring Series table and they went unbeaten through their first three games, beating Watford and Oxford 3-2 and 3-1 respectively.
They bounced back from a 4-1 loss at Doncaster Rovers Belles by beating Sheffield 2-1 but their first home loss of the season came at the hands of Millwall.
Evie Clarke and Jo Wilson notched to hand the Bees a 2-1 win over Villa at The Hive in August last year, with an injury-time goal from Beth Merrick proving little more than a consolation.
That followed a 1-1 draw earlier in the campaign where Katie Wilkinson’s stunning 25-yard free-kick cancelled out a first-half effort from Bees’ Evdokia Popadinova.
ONE TO WATCH – Ashleigh Goddard (London Bees)
Sitting alongside Oxford’s Ini-Abasi Umotong, London Bees skipper Ashleigh Goddard is the joint top-scorer in the Spring Series with four goals.
She notched in each of the Bees’ first three games before also finding the net against Millwall last weekend.
WHAT THEY SAID
Aston Villa winger Beth Merrick said:
“It’s unfortunate when you play football because every time you play the 90 minutes, as soon as you come off, you want to go back out and put things right.
“I have no doubt in my mind that we’ll absolutely turn it around. We’re here to compete – we’re not here to make up the numbers.
“Defensively, we just need to be on it against London Bees but I don’t think our problem [against Everton] was defensive.
“In both halves, we didn’t have any shots on target. To not even test their keeper is bad for us and something we have to put right.
“Every team has gone into the Spring Series not knowing what to expect. It’s good in some respects and not so in others.
“No team is absolutely flying. Every team has a loss in them – it’s just when it comes.”
London Bees captain and midfielder Ashleigh Goddard added:
“I think we look at every game and take the positives when we can.
“Even with a loss, there is a lot to learn from it and [the defeat to Millwall]will help us get going.
“This is a feeling we don’t enjoy and I don’t want to feel it again, so hopefully we will get back to winning ways and get some points.
“We have to just wipe the slate clean. We need to keep the positives and work hard in training; work on what you didn’t do so well.
“I really do think [losing to Millwall] is going to give us a little bit of fire.”
To buy tickets to an FA Women’s Super League match near you click here: http://www.ticketstores.co.uk/fawsl/
The Lamb Ground