West Ham United 1-1 Birmingham City
Barclays FA Women’s Super League
Chigwell Construction Stadium
Sunday 10 October 2021
West Ham United Women had to settle for a point against Birmingham City on Sunday afternoon, despite controlling the contest for large spells.
Claudia Walker opened the scoring early in the second half with a majestic solo effort, before the away side equalised through Louise Quinn after the Hammers failed to clear the ball away from danger.
Despite giving it their all in the closing stages, the east Londoners couldn’t grab a winner and subsequently shared the spoils with the Blues.
Olli Harder elected to make one change from the side that beat Manchester City last weekend, with Adriana Leon returning to the Starting XI in place of Abbey-Leigh Stringer, who dropped to the bench.
It was almost superb start for the Hammers in the east London sunshine, with Leon firing in a teasing cross that was a whisker away inside the opening minute of the game.
There was an intense nature about the home sides play in the opening 15 minutes, with the Blues resorted to long balls over the backline that rarely hit their mark.
But there was a lack of real clear-cut chances during the first 30 minutes, but the Hammers dominated possession, as they looked to take the lead.
A chance did finally present itself with 33 minutes on the clock – Tameka Yallop heading over from close range after a spell of Hammers dominance.
But Harder’s side couldn’t get their noses in front before the half-time whistle sounded.
Mistakes started to creep into the game from both sides after the break, with a poor pass from Yui Hasegawa almost being pounced upon by the Blues.
The Hammers seized on a lapse in concentration at the other end, with Claudia Walker gliding past two players before delicately lifting the ball over the head of Hourihan from outside the area to give the home side the lead.
And it was almost two only a second later, as Louise Quinn almost inadvertently turned the ball into her own net after another flurry forward.
Yallop was then denied by a stunning save from Hourihan at her near post – with Harder’s side beginning to assert their dominance after taking the lead.
Birmingham grew into the game after going behind, and got themselves back into the game on 67 minutes, when Louise Quinn stabbed home from close range, after the Hammers failed to deal with a corner.
Yallop once again went close with a headed effort, but time was running out – as the clock ticked down towards the final ten minutes.
Gilly Flaherty almost had the ball in the back of the net in stoppage time, but her headed effort from a well delivered corner kick was cleared away from danger on the line.
And Katerina Svitkova will feel as though she should have found the net with a last gasp effort, but the Czech international couldn't make the desired contact at the back post.
The Hammers therefore had to settle for a point as the full-time whistle sounded in east London.
West Ham United: Arnold, Wyne, Flaherty, Cissoko, Longhurst, Leon, Svitkova, Yallop, (Stringer 80), Hasegawa, Walker (Filis 88).
Unused Substitutes: Leat, Evans, Parker, Joel, Cairns.
Booked: Walker 7, Stringer 82
Goals: Walker 54’
Birmingham City: Hourihan, Scott, Louise Quinn, Robertson, Pennock, Finn, Lucy Quinn, Whipp (Sarri 78), Whelan (Ryan-Doyle 78), Holloway, Lawley.
Unused Substitutes: Sandvej, Smith, Cowie, Phillips, Clark.