Longhurst: We can look back on a positive season

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Kate Longhurst says West Ham United know Saturday’s 4-0 defeat to Brighton and Hove Albion was nowhere near good enough but believes the entire campaign can be considered with pride. 

The Irons were beaten heavily in the final match of the 2018/19 season at Rush Green Stadium courtesy of two goals in each half by the Seagulls, ending the campaign in difficult circumstances for Matt Beard’s side. 

Longhurst accepts Saturday’s performance by the team dropped below the accepted standards, but reflects on the entire campaign with pride, given the circumstances of the season. 

We finished seventh in the league, so we can look at it on the whole as a positive season.

Kate Longhurst

“I think our attitude at the first half probably wasn’t good enough in terms of knowing what Brighton can bring to the game,” the midfielder told whufc.com.  “They are a very physical team and very direct. I don’t think we have matched up to that and, unfortunately, we found ourselves 2-0 down. 

“We left ourselves with everything to do and then we are chasing down the game.  It just wasn’t good enough for us. It’s the result of a long season. It’s not a nice way to end the season. Of course, we would of love to send our fans home happy after all the support we have had over the season. 

“But, on the whole, we can look at all the positives; getting to an FA Cup final in our first professional year is the major one. Given we have brought in a lot of players at the start of the season who didn’t really know each other, and we finished seventh in the league, we can look at it on the whole as a positive season.”

Longhurst, a lifelong West Ham fan, will forever remember helping the side reach the FA Cup Final and playing at Wembley Stadium as the major highlight of her first season in Claret and Blue. 

“Getting to Wembley was the standout moment,” she continued.  “For us, it was a great occasion. Of course, you want to be winning trophies, you don’t want to be losing in finals, but I think for us to get there and perform the way we did; we gave a good account of ourselves and we had made people realise that we are a good team. 

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“I think making friends in the team as well. We have a really solid friendship group here, where everyone gets on well with each other, and that’s something that we definitely need to build on for next season.”

Over 1,400 supporters packed out Rush Green for the women’s final match of the campaign, and Longhurst hailed the brilliant West Ham fans for their support throughout the entire season. 

The No12 is hopeful of welcoming more supporters to women’s team matches in the 2019/20 campaign.

She added: “If you look at the start of the season, we had a few people come in dribs and drabs out of curiosity, and we’ve built that into a solid fan base that you see every week. It really means a lot to us. You look at the support we had in the FA Cup semi-final and final. It was immense.

“The support has been brilliant and hopefully we can get a few more fans in next season.”