There’s been plenty of moaning about the state of Liverpool FC Women, from me in particular. The constant roller coaster of this season is hard to ignore, after all. All the ups and downs might start to settle down now as surprises should become less frequent. (Hopefully).
Thankfully, there’s a victory to revel in right now as Yeovil Town came to visit Prenton Park and Liverpool were able to secure three points in the league in front of a home crowd with a 2-1 win. Liverpool dominated the game fairly well and found a last gasp winner four minutes before full time to send the Glovers home with another defeat. They started from the front foot and didn’t let up through 90 minutes and it was pretty exciting.
The chances came early and quickly, with Jess Clarke finding Niamh Charles some space for the first shot of the match, only for the effort to go wide of the post. That run set the tone for Liverpool as they continued to put pressure on Yeovil, searching for an early goal.
And early it was, with Liverpool scoring the first goal at 17 minutes in. Clarke again the playmaker by charging down the right channel, and able to send a gorgeous cross to Kirsty Linnet. Linnet put it in the back of the net easily to score her first in a Red shirt and put the hosts up 1-0.
That first goal opened up everything and the Reds were able to hold on and fight Yeovil back only for about ten more minutes before the Glovers equalized. Annie Heatherson worked some magic at 38 minutes and sent the ball around Reds keeper Fran Kitching to make it all level.
The Reds quickly resumed the pressure and the shooting, taking every chance they could to take back the lead. At 30 minutes Liverpool were given a corner and Laura Coombs found Charles, who unfortunately headed it too wide. The women kept Yeovil’s keeper Megan Walsh much busier and she was able to save some superb shots, including another from Kristy Linnet after a fantastic turn and shot in the box.
Charles and Clarke were clearly the standouts in this match, causing problems for Yeovil on their respective sides of the park. Even with the clock nearing halftime, Charles got forward after an exchange with Rinsola Babajide to set up an open Coombs, only to have the effort smothered by Walsh. There was a distinct feeling that another goal would come, maybe just not in this half, and that was fine.
The action resumed just as it had been left at the start of the second half, with Coombs taking a chance and shooting at goal, the effort just barely saved by Yeovil’s defense. Liverpool also made their first change at 55 minutes with Niamh Charles coming off for Christie Murray, but Murray quickly picked up where Charles left off in causing all sorts of trouble. Murray took a beautiful shot from distance that Walsh picked up easily, but would’ve been the perfect shot to put the Reds back ahead.
Frustration hit at 62 minutes when Babajide had a clear chance and ran through to the goal but was too timid with her shot, and it went right into Walsh’s arms. Then it was Jess Clarke’s turn to be thwarted by Walsh, twice in quick succession as Clarke sent an effort straight towards the top corner only to have Walsh push it out. Clarke picked up the rebound and tried once more, but Walsh was ready for that too, miraculously.
Just as it felt like this match would end in a disappointing draw, Clarke got her redemption at 87 minutes on. Satara Murray bombed through the Yeovil half and found Clarke waiting on the left wing. Clarke sliced inside the Yeovil defenses and shot, with her effort going in with a deflection and all.
A strong performance from a team that’s had a lot to overcome in the past few weeks, and just might be able to rise above it to get this season back on track.