FA Women’s Super League 2: Tottenham Hotspur Ladies forward Katie O’Leary keen to right some wrongs against Durham Women FC
PUBLISHED: 11:00 25 April 2018
©Ying Pan Wu , Wu's Photography, wusphotography.com
Karen Hills’ Spurs team entertain Durham Women FC on Sunday afternoon at Cheshunt FC for an FA Girls’ Football Week special
Katie O’Leary says Sunday’s home defeat to Sheffield FC Ladies was ‘difficult to take’ after being on such a high from Thursday’s morale-boosting win at Oxford United Women.
O’Leary and Coral-Jade Haines saw Tottenham Hotspur Ladies take home the points in a late, dramatic 2-1 win against the Yellows, but a difficult first half against Sheffield at Cheshunt Football Ground denied Spurs another FA Women’s Super League 2 victory.
Melissa Johnson’s brace saw the visitors take a two-goal lead in at the break, before the Lilywhites hit back through Ashleigh Neville’s 51st minute header.
Chloe Dixon made it 3-1, before Sarah Wiltshire scored the goal of the game to maintain Spurs’ fighting chance. But when Wiltshire unfortunately turned Johnson’s cross into her own net, Karen Hills’ team ended up on the wrong side of a 4-2 scoreline.
O’Leary is adamant there won’t be a repeat and says they should have recovered quicker from the setbacks. She said: “We had a bad day at the office, a very bad day.
“We gifted them their goals and even though in the second half we fought back with our goals, the damage was done.
“It’s very difficult to take. We all worked so hard for each other on and off the ball, played some patient football and got the three points at Oxford.
“Then Sunday came and we wanted to continue that against Sheffield, but when they scored after four minutes it deflated all of us. We are experienced players and should be able to bounce back there and then and we didn’t.”
The long-serving striker praised Neville and Wiltshire for the quality of their goals and was pleased about their hearted display to continue battling when adversity hit, but was disappointed the fight back arrived late in the game.
And O’Leary admits fresh legs could have played an important difference in deciding the result having only two days to recover, although she says there are no complaints.
“The goals we scored were outstanding, and there were parts in the second half where we were trying to play our football,” she continued. “That being said, none of us want to feel the way we have felt over the last few days and we will put it right on Sunday.
“We had the game away to Oxford Thursday night where we did work hard. Getting back at midnight to then go work the next day with 48 hours to recover could have been a factor, especially when Sheffield didn’t have a midweek game.
“However, there are no excuses for the way we played in the first half on Sunday. That will never happen again.”
Hills’ troops will be looking to bounce back when Durham Women FC arrive on Sunday at Cheshunt for an FA Girls’ Football Week special.
And the forward says they will use their frustration and disappointment to put things right in front of the home faithful.
O’Leary added: “We came into training Monday, had a meeting and it is now water under the bridge. We will be working 150 per cent all week leading up to Durham.
“We know we can compete with all the teams in this league and we need to showcase that Sunday, especially in front of our home crowd.”
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