Laura Vetterlein once again found herself amongst the scorers during Wednesday’s 7-0 win over Crystal Palace in the Women’s Continental League Cup.
The 27-year-old German got on the end of a Katherina Baunach corner to put the Hammers into a two-goal lead just before the break.
The comprehensive victory was not, however, enough to send the Hammers through as results elsewhere failed to go their way leaving them in third position in Group D.
Vetterlein’s headed goal was her second of the season after scoring a near-identical effort against Manchester United in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League.
Clean sheets are a huge focus, every team that comes to Rush Green should struggle to score and that’s my target, because if they don’t score then we get points.
Afterwards Vetterlein praised the ‘positive response’ of the squad after a difficult away trip to Liverpool on Sunday.
“It was a really good result,” she smiled. “It’s unfortunate that it’s not good enough to make it through to the next round of the cup, but we are still really proud to end our last home game of 2019 with a good result.
“It was our goal to have a positive response to the difficult result on Sunday, I think we did our jobs really well today and we even had chances to make it a few more.”
Long-term absentees Esmee De Graaf and Julia Simic returned to action against Crystal Palace and Vetterlein praised the dedication of her teammates to get back to full fitness.
“It’s really good to see Sici (Julia Simic) and Esmee (De Graaf) back out there. We really are so proud to have them back after all the work they have put in off the pitch.
"Esmee gave us a great 90-minute performance and Sici came on for the last ten minutes and that gave us another real bit of quality going forward, so I’m thrilled to see them back.”
Ending the year at Rush Green with a clean sheet is also a massive boost for Matt Beard’s side and Vetterlein is hoping the Irons can continue to keep their WSL rivals at bay moving forward.
“We want to try and make Rush Green a fortress, we don’t want anyone to be able to come here and beat us, that’s our goal for 2020. Clean sheets as well are a huge focus, every team that comes to Rush Green should struggle to score and that’s my target, because if they don’t score then we get points.”
Next up for the West Ham Women is a trip to Bristol City Women on Sunday, Vetterlein is hoping for another positive display before the Christmas break.
“We need another good performance against Bristol City Women this weekend, we want to make sure we get the three points there and then I think we all get the chance to go home to our families and rest. Then we come back we’re ready to attack the New Year as fresh as we can be.”