Beard: Reading win was fully deserved

Beard: Reading win was fully deserved


Matt Beard was full of praise for his West Ham side as they beat Reading 2-1 at the Madejski Stadium thanks to an Alisha Lehmann brace.

Lehmann scored on 20 minutes when Cho So-Hyun won the ball and threaded a great through ball to the winger who made no mistake. 

The winger doubled the Hammers’ lead on 54 minutes when, once again, So-Hyun passed through and she fired in to the roof of the net. 

Fara Williams pulled one back for Reading, but the Irons held on for the victory, which sees them jump above the Royals.

After the game, Beard was delighted with his team’s performance – the Hammers’ third win in a row.

He said: “It was fully deserved in my opinion. I thought we were excellent, and we had a great start to the game. 

“I was a little bit worried to be honest because we were a little bit sloppy in the warm-up. I thought we had a great start to the game.

“I thought we thoroughly deserved the three points tonight, we could have won by a higher margin, but at the end of the day we’ve shown a lot of character and resilience tonight.

“Reading are a good side, they put us under a lot of pressure, but I felt we dealt with everything, especially in the final minutes and I felt we managed the game really well.

It was fully deserved in my opinion. I thought we were excellent, and we had a great start to the game. 

Matt Beard

“We’ve played some good stuff in the last two cup games and I felt some of the football tonight was excellent, but as I say, everyone that participated tonight was outstanding.”

So-Hyun assisted both of the goals for the Irons as Lehmann proved to be clinical in front of goal. Beard highlighted So-Hyun as one of the standout players in the victory over the Royals

“Cho’s a great passer of the ball and the weight of her passes as well, she’s such an intelligent player.

“It’s funny because there was a time in the second half where I was wanting her to clip it, but she’s brought it down, played it around the corner and we got it in. 

“She’s not the Korean captain and international player with so many caps for no reason, she’s a world class player and she’s definitely brought a lot to our team and I’m really pleased with it.”

Now the Hammers have a break before their next game against Everton in the Women’s Super League. The head coach believes the win tonight was important before their game against the Toffees. 

“It was an important win because we go above reading now and our first game back is Everton who are below us, which is going to be a tough game, but we can carry on with that momentum. If we can get three points against Everton and get to the semi-final of the FA Cup, it would be an amazing next few weeks for us.”