Ten-player West Ham beaten by Birmingham

Adriana Leon


Ten-man West Ham United fell to a 2-1 defeat against Birmingham City at Rush Green Stadium. 

Adriana Leon got the Hammers only goal. The Canadian international opened the scoring for the Irons on 27 minutes with a thunderous volley from Kate Longhurst’s pinpoint cross.

However, the game was flipped on its head when Anna Moorhouse was sent off just before half-time for handling the ball outside the penalty area. 

The resulting freekick was taken by Hayley Ladd and curled into the top corner out of Becky Spencer’s reach.

The Blues sealed the three points with a scruffy goal on 75 minutes through Chloe Arthur after Spencer failed to hold the ball and the Birmingham midfielder fired in the rebound.

The first chance of the game fell for Birmingham on nine minutes. Gilly Flaherty did well to initially block the shot which went for a corner. The corner came in and Moorhouse couldn’t gather it and Claire Rafferty did well to clear it off the line.

Just before the 20-minute mark, Leanne Kiernan did well to hold the ball up and bring Leon in to play, but Kerys Harrop did well to stop the winger getting any further.

On 25 minutes Cho So-Hyun played a corner out to Erin Simon who played it back to the midfielder, she then played it into the box and Kiernan attempted the spectacular, but it didn’t pay off.

The opener came just three minutes later for the Hammers through Leon. Kate Longhurst, who was making her 100th Women’s Super League appearance, played in a great first-time ball from the left wing and perfectly found Leon who volleyed it into the back of the net.

Brianna Visalli had a chance on 35 minutes after Kiernan played a low cross into the box, but Visalli couldn’t get her shot away.

The Irons were reduced to 10 just before half-time when Moorhouse came out of her box and handled the ball, gifting a freekick to Birmingham on the edge of the area.

It was Visalli who made way for Becky Spencer, but the goalkeeper couldn’t do anything to stop the freekick into the top corner from Ladd bringing the game level.

The second half didn’t start much better for West Ham United when Marisa Ewers tried to loop a shot over Spencer who wasn’t sure where the ball was heading.

On 59 minutes the Blues could have made it two after a freekick was kept in at the back post and Flaherty did well to clear it off the line.

Six minutes later, West Ham had penalty appeals dismissed by the referee when Jane Ross went tumbling to the ground.

However, it was the away side who took the lead 10 minutes later. A corner was swung in and Spencer couldn’t keep hold of it and Arthur was able to fire in from the rebound to give the Blues the lead.

The Hammers could not find an equaliser in the closing stages meaning Birmingham took all three points back to the Midlands.

West Ham United: Moorhouse; Simon, Flaherty (c), Hendrix, Rafferty; So-hyun, Longhurst, Visalli (Spencer 43); Lehmann, Kiernan (Kmita 73), Leon (Ross 61)
Subs not used: Sampson,
Goals: Leon 27’
Red cards: Moorhouse 41

Birmingham City: Hampton; Sargeant, Ladd, Harrop (c), Arthur (Scofield 86), White, Ewers (Staniforth 67), Follis (Walker 55), Wellings, Scott, Mannion
Subs not used: Brooks, Williams, Mayling, Quinn,
Goals: Ladd 44’ Arthur 75’
Attendance: 706