Hannah Wheeler says the West Ham United Ladies are determined to end the season strongly and bounce back with three points against QPR this Sunday.
The Hammers saw a 13-game unbeaten run, started with the first match of 2018, come to an end in their last fixture after falling to a 2-1 home loss to Lewes.
The disappointment of that defeat is still raw for defender Wheeler, but the centre-back is determined for that loss to serve as motivation to return to winning ways in the season finale on Sunday.
“It hurt to lose that unbeaten run,” Wheeler told whufc.com. “The atmosphere after the game was very unpleasant. Everyone felt so disappointed, and for me disappointment is the worst feeling. Up until that Lewes game, we had worked really hard. I really do believe we should have won but it was our fault that we didn’t.
“I feel though that we will bounce back this weekend. We’re training hard, everyone is putting in everything they’ve got, so there’s no reason we can’t go out on Sunday and get three points to end the campaign.
We’re training hard, everyone is putting in everything they’ve got, so there’s no reason we can’t go out on Sunday and get three points to end the campaign.
“That defeat is in the past now and we leave it there. It’s wiped, we get a clean slate, and we go again! That first training session after Lewes, we all knew we had to put our best foot forward and show why we deserved to be in the squad for the last game of the season.”
The Irons have played QPR twice already this season, coming out triumphant in both contests. The first was a 3-1 home victory in the WPL Plate, before the Ladies earned a sensational 10-0 away win last month in the league.
For Wheeler, however, those results cannot be considered when heading into this weekend’s contest, with the defender aware of the threat Rangers possess.
She continued: “You cannot underestimate QPR at all. When we played them away they did have players missing from their team. They’ve scored some big goals and got some good results this season. We know they hold a threat and we cannot afford to be complacent.
“If we can beat QPR it still equates to an amazing 2018, despite the last result. We want to go out with a bang. We have to work hard for each other and prove what we’re about. We have to show our run in 2018 wasn’t a fluke and we are able to perform at the best level.”
Sunday’s contest will also feature a celebration of West Ham Ladies’ achievements this campaign, with fans invited to join in the activities pre-game at Rush Green.
With gates opening at 12pm, supporters can enjoy the company of club legend Carlton Cole, take photos with the two trophies won this season, and also make use of inflatable games and other activities.
Wheeler is eager for the team to show their appreciation to the excellent supporters with a performance against QPR.
“We know a lot of people are coming down for the season finale and the activities before the game. Families and friends are all going to be with us for the game, which will be amazing!
“We’ve got to perform and give everyone a reason to cheer and be happy for the final match of the season. We can’t wait to welcome everyone down for the game.”