Ladies defeated in opener

Marc Nurse's first game in charge of West Ham United Ladies ended in a 5-0 FA Women's Premier League loss at Coventry United
West Ham Ladies opened the 2015/16 FA Women’s Premier League Southern Division season with a 5-0 defeat at Coventry United on Sunday.
Defender Nikki Miles headed the hosts into an early lead and the game remained in the balance at 1-0 for a long time, with debutants Georgia Miller and Aleah Headley missing chances for the Hammers straight after the break.
After being let off my new manager Marc Nurse’s West Ham, the home side rallied and extended their lead through Maz Gauntlett, Helen Dermody, Miles’ second and a late lob from substitute Amanda Whalley.
The Hammers line-up contained several new faces from the side that beat Shanklin LFC in the club’s final pre-season fixture. Indian international goalkeeper Aditi Chaucan replaced Jess Parlane in goal, with Latoya Bailey also making her debut in place of the injured Emma Sherwood in attack.
Headley came into the midfield alongside April Bowers to replace Grenada international Shirvae Edwards, while Kelley Blanchflower returned to action in place of the unavailable Lily Mellors.
After an extremely successful pre-season that saw the Hammers net 44 goals and concede just one, Nurse’s side would have hoped for a better start.
From a short corner, Dermody was given far too much time and space to cross and she found Miles at the back post, who headed home confidently past Chaucan.
Although they were a goal down, the Hammers grew in confidence and started to gain more control and possession of the ball, but they could not fashion an equaliser.
Just seconds after half-time, the visitors showed created their best chance of the game. However, Miller blazed her shot high over the crossbar. Moments later, West Ham were in again, but
Headley rushed her shot from the edge of the area and sliced well wide.
Nurse’s side remained just a goal down and repeatedly threaten to level until the final 21 minutes, when Coventry added four goals to make the final scoreline somewhat one-sided.
One too many misplaced passes opened up a chance for Coventry to punish their guests. Chaucan made a fantastic save in a one on one situation, but the ball fell kindly to Gauntlett, who buried the ball into the far corner of the net.
If Coventry’s second goal was not enough of a killer blow for Nurse’s team, it got much worse in the following 12 minutes as the home side managed to net another three goals.
Firstly, Miles was well placed at the far post to head home her second of the game in very similar fashion to her first, followed by Dermody running clear through to slide the ball home. To complete a forgettable afternoon at Bedworth Villa FC, substitute Whalley’s long range effort caught Chaucan slightly off her line.
West Ham will be determined to get this result out of their systems, but their opening home fixture against Portsmouth Ladies scheduled for 23 August has been postponed due to Pompey players’ international commitments.
Nurse’s side are therefore next in action in the FA Women’s Premier League Cup Determining Round against Crystal Palace on Sunday 30 August. Kick-off at AFC Hornchurch’s Bridge Avenue Stadium is at 2pm, with tickets already available here.
Ladies: Chaucan, Stimson, Revell, Little (c), Bottom, Xidhas, Bowers, Headley, Miller (Locke), Bailey (Adeyemo), Blanchflower
Subs not used: Parlane, Gullefer