Bristol Academy beat Liverpool 1-0 at Stoke Gifford Stadium on Saturday, in what was Matt Beard’s first Women’s Super League match in charge of the Liverpool Ladies.
The Vixens piled pressure on the LLFC defence from the start but Liverpool’s keeper Nicky Davies, who was to put on an impressive performance for the duration of the match, saved an effort by Bristol’s Nicki Watts at 12 minutes.
A barrage on the Liverpool goal then ensued but Davies stayed strong before a handball from Nicky Hardy saw a penalty awarded to Bristol.
Jessica Fishlock stepped up to what was her third attempt at a goal but Davies once again denied her a place on the score sheet.
Fishlock once more enforced her control on the match in the centre of midfield when a second distant effort was parried by Davies, only to land at the feet of oncoming Laura del Rio. Her shot was kept out by the Red’s stopper however.
The Academy onslaught continued right up until half time, with a mazy run from del Rio, who could only fire wide.
The second half was much more of the same but Del Rio finally found the net in after a close range rebound strike from yet another save by Davies.
Unsurprisingly Davies was named woman of the match after playing steadily throughout the game to ensure that her side had some chance of a draw.
The Women’s Sports Magazine