Beard: Our quality shone through against Huddersfield
Matt Beard believes the attacking ability West Ham United possess was on display for all to see in Sunday’s 8-1 win over Huddersfield Town Ladies.
A Leanne Kiernan hat-trick was the pinnacle of a fantastic afternoon at Rush Green Stadium with Kate Longhurst, Alisha Lehmann, Jane Ross, Rosie Kmita and Brianna Visalli also getting on the scoresheet to put the Irons into the quarter-finals of the SSE Women’s FA Cup.
Beard was delighted with how his side showed their qualities going forward in their dominant performance, but said the most important thing was to secure passage into the last eight of the FA Cup.
Overall, I think our quality shone through today, and the most important thing for us was to get into the quarter-finals.
“The important thing was that we got the win today,” Beard reflected. “I’m pleased with the score. I’m disappointed we went behind; that was obviously frustrating, but these are tough games to play in and we always knew that Huddersfield would come out and start aggressive.
“I think we could have had more in the first half as well. We’re pleased that we’ve created numerous chances, and we converted eight today. Maybe we could have had two or three more.
“I’m really pleased for Leanne. She had her injury problems over the last few months so for her to get the start today was terrific, and she’s taken her chance today. It’s pleasing that Kate Longhurst got on the scoresheet. All of our attacking players – Leanne, Rossy and Alisha – have got in good positions and scored today, which was pleasing.”
“Overall, I think our quality shone through today, and the most important thing for us was to get into the quarter-finals.”
The West Ham United head coach admitted that Huddersfield were always going to be a tough test, with the National League North side taking the lead in Sunday’s game.
However, Beard was happy with how his side battled back to secure the result.
“We knew they would set off us,” Beard added. “They tried to force us one way, and we had planned for that. I think, in these types of games, they’ve got nothing to lose, and I think they came out of the traps flying and tried to put us under pressure.
“They did that for the first 15 minutes. We were frustrated with the penalty, because it shouldn’t have got that far, but it was difficult to see. We responded to that and we’ve done well. We kept playing our game and we’re pleased.”