December 8, 2019 by Stephen L Wright
A battling Blues took on Bristol and the blustery weather to pick up all three points. It was a clean win and a convincing one made possible by goals in each half from Lucy Whipp and Abbi Grant (her second in two games).
The two sides came into this match with just the one point separating them. It was crunch time for both with Bristol yet to get a win and Blues with an injury-hit squad struggling to get some solid play on the books.
Blues have also been struggling in the vital third of the pitch unable to convert or create chances. Today, from the off, they found their mojo, took the game to Bristol and dominated the final third. Academy player Lily Simkin caused countless problems for the Bristol defence with darting runs and quick through balls, whilst Skipper Lucy Staniforth gave a very good impression of a blue-tailed fly. But it was an arching strike from Lucy Whipp that had former Blues ‘keeper Sophie Baggaley grasping at air.
The pressure stayed on, although Bristol managed to get into Blues’ six-yard box on a couple of occasions resulting in the ball being scrambled away. That said, and outside these moments, ‘keeper Hannah Hampton was not really put under any particular pressure.
In the second half Blues lost a bit of momentum and got a little bit pedestrian, but they soon got back on the ball and, consequently, Bristol were given the run around, with Grant’s goal a worthy result.
All in all, a more convincing performance from the team and particularly under the pressure of missing key players. Which all goes to show that heart over head always wins through.
Blues still have a game in hand. But it’s a double-header next as they take on Man U on Wednesday in the Conti Cup and in the League on Sunday.