16 and not out!
Millwall Lionesses made it 16 unbeaten yesterday with a 2-0 win over 2nd bottom in the league Aston Villa, despite making hard work of the situation.
After finding out that Doncaster had won again away to Durham 2-1 it was vital that the Lionesses bettered the result. The heavy rain, hailstones and snow that blistered itself onto the pitch would join in on a very frustrating half for both sides which arguably saw the home side performing better.
Ebony Salmon proved a handful for the Lionesses defence with her pace and strength and if it wasn't for some great defending by Leighanne Robe and Jordan Butler, Villa would have gone into the lead at half time.
The Lionesses struggled to really get going out there and with the weather not helping it looked like it could be a very long and cold afternoon for the Lionesses when Ebony Salmon again broke the line of defence and fired towards the far post, destined to go in but for a fine save from Sarah Quantrill to keep it goalless and send it wide for a corner.
Millwall's only real chance of the first half came with 1 minute to go as Ella Rutherford let fly from just outside the box. The youngster couldn't quite get the ball on target as it flew wide of the left post.
Stalemate at half time and a very frustrating half to say the least, the Lionesses were struggling to get that final ball through and the side second bottom of the league would be very pleased with the first 45.
The second half began and Millwall took a more positive approach in the way they were attacking, Villa still had the better of the chances but with Millwall's quality just one half chance could see us go one nil up and we thought it came when Megan Wynne done well to win the ball back on the edge of the 18 yard box, Megan fired goal bound but her effort was saved well by Rogers, sending it away for a corner.
Just like multiple occasions this season Charlie Devlin has been able to produce that bit of magic to win the Lionesses the game and that was the case yesterday. Charlie broke the deadlock on the 70th minute when she picked the ball up just inside the box before keeping her cool and curling it past the keeper to give the Lionesses the lead which with how the game started to swing it was coming.
Despite the goal Villa still attacked with great force and weren't far away from an equaliser especially when a cross from the right evaded everyone! Just a touch on the ball by any player would have seen that gone in, but luckily enough the Lionesses survived.
The introduction of Rianna Dean and Amber Gaylor paid off when they both done well down the left to set up Charlie Devlin for her second. Dean used her pace and strength to see off her marker before feeding through Gaylor who remained calm and collective as she slotted it through to Devlin who could not miss from 3 yards out. 0-2 in the 90th minute, the points were Millwall's.
The full time whistle blew and the drums and chants of the Aston Villa faithful remained as in all fairness Villa showed what a good side they were and really gave Millwall a tough challenge. However it was another 3 points for Lee Burch's side who will look to prepare well this weekend to ensure that they are ready for a tough test against Arsenal in the FA Cup 5th round next weekend.
How they lined up
Millwall Lionesses Starting XI:
Quantrill, Wynne, Robe, Butler, Alexander, Cowan, Horwood (Dean 56), Nicol, Devlin, Rutherford (Gaylor 65), Hincks (Mason 80)
Subs not used: Brooks, Giddings
Aston Villa Starting XI:
Rogers, Merrick (Warner 81), N'Dow, Richards, Jones, Hutton, West, Hassall, Hurley, Salmon, Ejupi
Subs not used: Crackle, Goddard, Martin, Baptiste, Brown
MSC POTM: Charlie Devlin
No question about it Charlie Devlin two goals turned a frustrating 70 minutes into a magnificent 20 minutes. Her two goals were taken well and really did step up when Millwall needed her to.
FA CUP 5TH ROUND
Arsenal await us on the 18th in the 5th round of the FA cup with a chance to progress into the quarters. Its a 2PM kick off at Borehamwood, this has the potential to be a classic and a chance to get our revenge.