Oxford United Women continued their unbeaten start to the season with a 3-0 win over London Bees this evening.
Leah Burridge put the U’s ahead two minutes into the game and Carly Johns doubled the lead just after half time . Just before the final whistle, Daisy McLachlan added a third to give United nine points out of nine.
The U’s look to be starting a habit of scoring early; in the second minute, Burridge latched on to a delicately chipped ball over the top from Naomi Cole and drilled the ball onto the far post and in for the second game in a row. Her third of the season and another quick start for the U’s.
The visitors were busy in the first half, but couldn’t really forge a chance to test Rose Kite in the Oxford net. Yet again, the midfield trio of Captain Lauren Haynes, Lily Stevens and summer signing Cole were a hive of activity for the U’s going forward and a shield for their confident defense.
It was the first Tuesday night game of the season for both sides, who had also both played 48 hours before in the league, but neither side looked low on energy. An exciting game was unfolding in front of the 194 fans who had come out in support.
Much like on the weekend, the U’s came out quickly after the break again and stung the Bees with their second. Shelley Provan did some excellent work to beat two defenders to the by-line, then cut the ball back to Johns whose curling effort confused Lynch and found the back of the net. The striker opened her account for the season and United were 2-0 up.
The game began to get a bit feisty, with strong tackles being thrown about all over the pitch, but United refused to lose their cool and continued to play their football. In the 67th minute, Johns, who buzzed about the pitch all night, found a delightful ball into the path of McLachlan’s run but her chipped effort rolled wide of the post.
Sarah King replaced Burridge on 80 minutes, who had put in two excellent shifts over the bank holiday. Just after Stevens forced a fantastic double save from Lynch before the U’s made their final changes. Academy graduate Erin Hartigan replaced goal scorer Carly Johns whilst Sammy Wynne came on for Shelley Provan.
In added time,McLachlan cut inside and fired a curling effort into the top corner to give United a 3-0 lead.
This was the third consecutive victory and clean sheet for Oxford United Women, who now boast a very strong record to start the season. Bees had been unbeaten in the league until this point, so this was a solid result. As far as Augusts go, this was near perfect from United.
United will now hope to earn another three points on Sunday when they host Cheltenham Town Ladies at Court Place Farm.
LINEUP: KITE, GRAY, CASLEY, BEAVER (GOTCH, 45’), PROVAN (WYNNE, 90+4’), COLE, HAYNES, STEVENS, JOHNS (HARTIGAN, 90’), BURRIDGE (KING, 80’), MCLACHLAN