John Salomon admitted he was “very” frustrated after Watford Ladies began their Women’s Super League 2 season with a 2-2 draw at home to Millwall Lionesses tonight, acknowledging the positive aspects of his side’s play but also believing they will learn much from their opening league game.
After falling behind, Megan Wynne got the Golden Girls back on terms but they were unable to gain the upper hand before the break after being denied by three fine saves from Millwall keeper Sarah Quantrill.
Renee Hector did head the hosts in front within two minutes of the restart but the lead was to prove short-lived as the visitors equalised soon after.
The Watford boss said: “I think we’re disappointed with a point but on the face of the game we can understand it’s a good point because we had to battle really hard for it. We want to win every game, we’re very competitive and we put a lot of effort into being ready for these games so when it’s not a win we’re disappointed. But I think that’s a good thing, that’s healthy as well because the players are so competitive, so focused on being successful that they want to win games.”
The manner of Millwall’s opener was disappointing as errors from Hector and central defensive partner Bonnie Horwood allowed Sarah Whitter to round keeper Shayla Burgess and score. But Salomon was pleased with how his side responded to that setback.
“I think we learn lessons quite well as a team,” he said. “We obviously conceded the goal and the defending one or two times leading up to that goal, plus when they eventually scored, was disappointing.
“There’s a couple of things we’ve talked about at half-time that we could have done differently but as a group, as a unit of defence they learn lessons as the game goes on. I really like that about this group, they learn as the games goes on. I thought they dealt well with that particular centre forward after the goal and that enabled us to get on the ball and start to play our way and start to get the ball forward.
“The second half got a bit compact, a bit physical and was broken up a bit with substitutions and injuries and things like that and we never really got going I didn’t think but we’ll learn the lessons from this and take them into Sunday.”
Asked what positives he took from his side’s performance, Salomon responded: “I think the hard work ethic, that’s really important to us, our ethos, how we play. I think the fact we scored two goals. What we’ve kind of mapped out is generally in women’s football if you score two goals that’s usually enough to win the game if you can keep your defensive areas assured.
“There’s a few things we’ve learnt tonight and there’s a few positives we’ll take in terms of some of those chances we’ve created, the compactness as a team but there’s a lot of things we’ll go away and learn from this as well because there’s certain ways that we want to play and I don’t think we really hit those levels in the second half.”
The Golden Girls will hope to get their maiden Super League win at the second time of asking on Sunday when they entertain Aston Villa Ladies at Berkhamsted FC, kick-off 2pm.