Another tough match for the First Team who once again came up against a team from a higher league when they hosted Clapham United at Bedfont in the Capital Women’s Cup.
The squad was already down in numbers due to injuries, and suffered another blow when captain Mollie Holmes suffered a painful ankle injury during the warm up which ruled her out.
A serious setback but perhaps spurred on by this, Brentford came racing out of the blocks creating chances and playing some good attacking football while keeping Clapham at bay. A mistake in midfield gave the visitors the chance they needed to take the lead, and after such a bright start this seemed to hit the Bees hard and they conceded another goal soon after. Despite a long-range lobbed goal from Jodie Reid to bring the score to 2-1, Clapham were starting to control the play, forcing and capitalizing on errors from the home side. They converted another chance to make it 3-1 at half time.
Our ladies came out after the break with an obvious determination to put the first half behind them, and in the second period pressed, battled and challenged for every ball. This left some spaces and another error allowed Clapham to make it 4-1 before Kaitlyn Spencer-Dempsey fired home to make it 4-2.
A very competitive and hard fought second half wasn’t quite enough to make up for the below par first half performance, but the Women’s captain Mollie and coach Tommy Ryan-Maynard were rightfully pleased with the spirit and attitude the Bees displayed in the final 45 minutes. Another loss but a close game against a very good side. Lots of positives to take into the next match against Hampton and Richmond Borough, but we need to reduce the errors and put away the opportunities, which has been a feature of the season so far, and has resulted in a number of very narrow losses.
It was a cup tie in the same competition away at local rivals Ashford Town B for Brentford Women’s Development on Sunday, made all the more meaningful as Ashford have a number of ex-Bees players, and are led by last year’s Brentford coaches Justin Ali and Nathan Mobey. The game saw Charlotte Tanner come back from retirement to play in goal rather than helping from the touchline, but she couldn’t stop Ashford scoring twice in the first half to take a 2 -0 lead into the break. The combined efforts of coach Will Blithing and Charlotte at half time saw a big improvement in the second half, and 2 well taken goals from leading scorer Shannon Read brought the score back to 2-2 at full time. That takes Shannon’s total to nine for the season.
With no extra time in this competition, the game was decided by penalties with the Bees coming out winners 5-4. A fantastic and ultimately deserved victory.
Both matches included important contributions from recently signed players who have tried out at our Wednesday night training sessions in Southall. We always welcome interested players who are aged 16 and over, so why not give it a go. The players are friendly, the sessions are interesting, instructive and progressive, and are led by Head Coach and ex Brentford professional footballer Karleigh Osborne.