Oxford United Women beat Plymouth Argyle Women 5-0 at Court Place Farm this afternoon to earn back-to-back victories.
Izzy Cook and Taome Oliver gave the U’s a 2-0 lead at the break, before Zoe Barratt, Cook and Sarah King made it three, four and five in the second period.
Plymouth like Oxford, fresh off the back of their first win of the season, started well and stopped United from creating anything dangerous for at least the first 15 minutes; Paris Sercombe the first keeper called into action, coming out and sliding in to make an important clearance as Ellie Sara broke through the middle.
The Yellows stepped it up and the pressure told; Jaime Gotch had three headed chances narrowly fly wide, and Leah Burridge saw her curling effort tipped over excellently by Jasmine Read.
Within that spell, and in very quick succession, Lucy Hack received two yellow cards for late challenges on the U’s wingers Sarah King and Cook, and Argyle were down to ten women.
From that point on there was only one outcome, and minutes after seeing her effort come off the inside of the post and roll across the line, Cook had her second goal in as many games.
Space opened up and Lily Stevens exploited it, fizzing the ball into Cook who rifled the ball past Read at the near post to open the scoring.
In honesty, it could’ve been four or five at half time – King saw her thunderous effort rattle the crossbar and bounce on (or with goal line technology possibly over) the line.
Five minutes before half time, the U’s did double their lead. Oliver, returning to the side at left back as Shelly Provan was rested, broke forward and was fed by Stevens again before firing her effort into the bottom right corner.
A strong half, aided by the Plymouth dismissal, but when United get going moving forward the pace and technique is really exciting to watch.
The U’s didn’t hesitate in capitalising on the player advantage and scored a fourth and fifth in quick succession.
First Barratt latched on to a beautiful through ball from Kate Wiseman to tuck her home her 6th of the season in the 51st minute before Cook doubled her tally for the day, nicking the ball back high up the pitch and slotting home a fourth.
King then rounded off a five star performance with an excellent strike in the 67th minute, arrowed into the top right corner.
Jenna Legg made her first appearance of the season from the bench, returning from injury to see out the final fifteen minutes.
The U’s played some scintillating football throughout the afternoon and thoroughly deserved the win.
Now, a big week of training before an away trip to last seasons’ title rivals Portsmouth Women on Sunday 24th September.
LINEUP: Sercombe, Oliver, Wellesley-Smith, Gotch (Sherwood 66’), Hoare, Wiseman, Stevens, Burridge (Legg 75’), Cook (Trinci 75’), Barratt (Swaby 78’), King
Report by Billy Lawrence. Photos by Darrell Fisher and Lydia Wakefield