Two goals apiece for Alisha Lehmann and Julia Simic, and a finish for Brianna Visalli, saw West Ham United pick up our best ever result in the FA Women’s Super League; a 5-0 victory away to Yeovil Town Ladies.
Lehmann’s double and a great finish by Simic in the opening half put West Ham on their way to victory, giving the away side a 3-0 lead at half-time.
Yeovil looked to push back into the game as the second half begun, but Visalli’s headed effort put the game to bed, before Simic’s cool finish on 59 minutes secured a fantastic result for the Irons.
West Ham’s intent for goals was clear from the opening whistle, with Lehmann and Ross breaking and combining, setting up a chance for Rosie Kmita. The winger, who scored in the win over Yeovil at Rush Green in September, saw her eleventh minute strike go out for a corner.
Lehmann would go close twice in the space of two minutes, seeing a curling effort go over the bar before goalkeeper Megan Walsh turned away another strike, but the No7 would not be denied the third time.
Just moments after West Ham had a goal ruled out for an apparent foul, Lehmann latched on to a superb through-ball and squeezed the ball under Walsh, giving Matt Beard’s side the lead.
On 27 minutes, the Swiss international had her second. The ball was put on a plate by the returning Ria Percival. The New Zealander’s cross was met at the far post by Lehmann, who calmly volleyed home with the outside of her right boot.
The Irons made it 3-0 on 34 minutes, with Percival again registering an assist. The No2 again swung in a sensational cross, and this time Simic met the ball, turning home a low effort.
There was still time for Ross to strike the post, denying the Hammers a fourth before the referee’s half-time whistle.
With the Irons leading by three at the break, Beard opted for a change at half-time, swapping out goalkeeper Anna Moorhouse, who enjoyed a quiet first period, in place of Becky Spencer.
Spencer was called on almost immediately as the Glovers looked to push back into the contest. A Cousins header on target forced her into a good save.
Yeovil continued to press, looking for a way back into the fixture, but on 53 minutes Visalli struck to make it 4-0. A quick counter-attacking move saw Simic create some space on the flank, and the German’s cross was met by the American, who coolly headed into the net.
Simic’s impressive outing continued just prior to the hour mark, sprinting into the penalty area and tucking home after shifting the ball onto her left-boot, getting her second and West Ham’s fifth of the match.
Simic’s goal put two West Ham players just one finish away from a hat-trick, and with 15 minutes remaining, Lehmann went close. Rosie Kmita’s cross was inch-perfect, and the No7’s twisting volley from 12 yards rattled off the cross bar, earning a gasp of appreciation from The Clayson Stadium crowd.
There was still time for Lehmann to have another attempt, while Kmita saw a shot go over the bar. The final whistle went, and West Ham ended their 2018 league campaign with their best FA WSL win of the season so far.
Yeovil Town Ladies: Walsh; Alexander, Syme (Evans 67), Cousins, Short, Fergusson (Albuery 83), Horwood, Heatherson, Gaylor (Bloomfield 58), Mason, Donavon
Subs not used: Goddard, Fischer, Piggott, Taylor
West Ham United: Moorhouse (Spencer 46); Percival, Flaherty, Hendrix, Rafferty; Longhurst (Sampson 80), Visalli, Simic (Reichardt 64); Lehmann, Ross, Kmita
Subs not used:
Goals: Lehmann 19, 27, Simic 34, 59, Visalli 53,