Spurs Ladies stung by Bees' comeback
Thu 06 December 2018, 16:09|Tottenham Hotspur
Spurs Ladies encountered their first defeat of the Continental Tyres Cup, Group One South, with a 4-2 loss against London Bees at The Hive Stadium on Wednesday night, writes Rosie Bonass.
The Lilywhites made an encouraging start and were two up following goals from Rianna Dean and Sarah Wiltshire but Anne-Laure Davy pulled one back for Bees moments before half-time to give them hope going into the break.
Davy levelled for the hosts sharply after the interval and Katie Wilkinson and substitute Connie Forman went on to secure the win for Bees.
The defeat sees Spurs move down to third in the group table with Women’s Super League sides Chelsea and Brighton making up first and second position.
Karen Hills handed Ryah Vyse and Wendy Martin their first starts of the season as part of several changes she made to the team that lost to Durham in their previous game.
Goalkeeper Emma Gibbon came in for the suspended Chloe Morgan and Anna Filbey, Anne Meiwald, Bianca Baptiste and Coral-Jade Haines were among the other changes for Spurs.
The Lilywhites were on the front foot in the early stages and Dean took full advantage of a sloppy back pass from Bees to take the ball around Sarah Quantrill, her effort rebounding in off the post after five minutes for 1-0.
Wiltshire doubled our lead in the 40th minute, her brilliant attempt from outside the box was tipped over for a corner by Quantrill before the attacker curled in another effort that beat the Bees’ keeper at the far post.
Six minutes later, former Spurs player Lauren Pickett delivered a ball into the penalty area for Davy to tap in from close range and bring the Bees back into the game ahead of the break.
Bees came out confident in the second half, and found an equaliser within a minute of the restart. Gibbon pulled off a terrific save to deny Ruesha Littlejohn, but Davy was in the right place at the right time to convert the rebound.
The home side went ahead in the 62nd minute after Wilkinson looped the ball past Gibbon, from the edge of the box into the top corner - leaving Spurs stunned with Bees’ comeback.
Forman wrapped up the win for Bees in the 84th minute, scoring their fourth of the game following a counter-attack.
Manager Karen Hills acknowledged that her team’s performance after half-time wasn’t up to scratch following an encouraging display in the first half.
“It was a game of two halves,” Hills said. “We had the upper hand in the first half and credit to them, they were strong in the second half. It wasn’t good enough and we’re disappointed. We’ll go away and look at the whole performance and prepare for Palace on Sunday.”
Despite the defeat, Anna Filbey was pleased to be back in the starting line-up and played her first 90 minutes for Spurs since August following an injury she sustained in the 3-0 win away to Leicester.
“It was nice to be back, it was tough but I’m pleased I got 90 minutes under my belt, and I felt good,” Filbey said. “I think their goal before half-time gave them momentum and belief and they came out the better team. We’ve got to pick ourselves up and quickly. We’re back into training tomorrow and we'll look to put things right.”
London Bees 4-2 Spurs Ladies
London Bees: Quantrill, Johnson, Rolandsen, Pickett (Dench 88), O’Leary, Gibson, Beckett, Will, Davy (Forman 73), Wilkinson, Littlejohn (Nunn 69). Substitutes (not used): Gould, Gibson, Dench.
Spurs Ladies: Emma Gibbon, Anna Meiwald, Jenna Schillaci (Angela Addison 66), Ryah Vyse, Rianna Dean (Jessica Naz 62), Anna Filbey, Coral-Jade Haines (Megan Wynne 72), Lucia Leon, Sarah Wiltshire, Bianca Baptiste, Wendy Martin. Substitutes (not used): Josie Green, Sophie McLean, Renée Hector, Ashleigh Neville.
FA Continental Tyres Cup, Group One South
Goals: London Bees - Anne-Laure Davy 45, 46, Katie Wilkinson 60, Connie Forman 84; Spurs Ladies - Rianna Dean 5, Sarah Wiltshire 40.
Referee: Michael Begley.
Venue: The Hive Stadium.