Laura Vetterlein: We deserved to win the game

Laura Vetterlein says that her side deserved all three points against Birmingham City on Wednesday evening. 

The Hammers looked destined to do so after a superb second half performance at Victoria Road, but Blues defender Ruby Mace popped up at the back post with seconds remaining to snatch the victory away from the East Londoners. 

“It’s a really painful way to end because it feels like a defeat,” Vetterlein began. “We turned up in the second half and showed that we could attack and get the ball forward. I feel that we dominated the second period and we deserved to win the game based off of that performance. 

“When you’re leading in the 94th minute, you need to bring those three points home and unfortunately, we didn’t do that tonight,” she said. 

Olli Harder’s side started brightly in Dagenham, before being pegged back by a well worked Birmingham set piece – Emily Murphy scrambling the ball in from close range. 

“I think we started the game well; in the first 10 minutes we moved the ball well and created a couple of decent opportunities. Then we conceded and that disrupted our flow a little bit - we didn’t quite get going. 

“We knew at half-time that there was a couple of things that we needed to improve to get us playing like we were in the opening stages. We made those changes and there was a big improvement, it’s just unfortunate that it ended the way it did and we’re not celebrating with three points. “

It was a bitter blow for the home side, who would have leapfrogged their opponents in the league standings with a victory on Wednesday evening, but Vetterlein is confident that her team-mates heads won’t drop as they look forward to their next fixture in the WSL. 

“I’m not worried about our togetherness because we came straight out at half-time and got ourselves back in the game. This group is definitely working well together, everyone believes in themselves and I think that togetherness came across during the match. 

“That’s the thing about football, you have to move on a soon as possible, not get too high after a win or too low after a bad result or defeat. We have a big game coming up against Manchester United at Old Trafford, so we have to move on from tonight and take the positives out of the game.”

Goals have been hard to come by in recent weeks, with the Hammers not registering a shot on target in their two previous WSL matches. There was a stark improvement this time around though, as they found the back of the net on two occasions and had eight shots on target in the match. 

“We scored two goals, which is a big plus for us because we’ve struggled to score in recent weeks. We had a lot of opportunities and could have probably scored more than the two we got, so we need to take that into our next match and continue in that vein. 

“We’ve worked a lot on that during training, so to see it actually coming to fruition out there on the pitch is a plus and we need to keep building on that. We spent about three weeks in training working on creating chances and our play in the final third, and I believe that you could see some of that hard work in the second half with the chances that we were able to create. 

“We have to move on from the disappointment we feel at this moment and keep building. It’s another point on the board which see’s us moving in the right direction, but now we need to turn our focus to our next match,” she said.

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