With the start of the season comes the start of a new domestic cup tournament, and this time it was the Continental League Cup. Liverpool FC Women’s first match came against FA WSL side Aston Villa on Wednesday at Prenton Park.
While the final score ended 1-1, Liverpool grabbed a bonus point towards the table by winning through a penalty shootout.
Aston Villa scored within the second minute from a Liverpool corner as Alisha Lehmann guided the ball out to Shania Hayles, crossing into the low corner for the lead. That didn’t deter Liverpool at all, though, as they took the time to look for their equalizer - after a brief moment of panic, of course.
Missy Bo Kearns became a bright spot through the first half, charging forward and sending precise passes that had little to show for them. She went close with a low shot from 25 yards out, that just went wide of the post, despite the good work of Georgia Walters to build up the chance. Even summer signing Carla Humphrey tried her hand from even further out, though the effort floated right into the hands of Villa ‘keeper Sian Rogers.
Despite the early lead, Liverpool took full control of the match, pushing the visitors back at every opportunity. Melissa Lawley even picked out Meikayla Moore on the right side who saw her shot go off target, and Kearns set up a chance for Rhiannon Roberts that didn’t make it to the back of the net.
It only took four minutes for Leanne Kiernan to score after coming off the bench, though, finding the equalizer that the Reds had been looking for all match. Kiernan charged into the box from the right edge, worked through Villa’s challenges, and then finished beautifully.
Of course, nothing good can last, as Kiernan limped off shortly after and was unavailable for the ensuing penalty shootout. Villa did their best to find a winner in those last ten minutes, but were unsuccessful in normal time.
Then came the penalty shootout, in which Liverpool scored all five penalties, with Ashley Hodson securing the win with her last shot against Sian Rogers.
A good win for the Reds, to maintain their run of good form and go into the international break on a high. Their next match is October 31st, Halloween, against Lewes FC, again at home - luckily!