Rehanne Skinner

Skinner: I'm proud of my players' performance against Chelsea

West Ham United women’s team manager Rehanne Skinner reaffirmed a message that was clear for all inside Chigwell Construction Stadium to see come the full-time whistle.

Despite a 2-0 defeat by Chelsea on Sunday afternoon, there was a lot to enjoy about West Ham’s performance and plenty of positives to take into the final five matches of the 2023/24 Barclays Women’s Super League season.

While Chelsea goals from Aggie Beever-Jones and Erin Cuthbert secured the visitors the bragging rights on Women’s Football Weekend and took them back to the top of the tree, Skinner’s side had more than enough chances to sneak a point – or perhaps even all three.

Honoka Hayashi’s equaliser was wrongly adjudged offside, while Riko Ueki hit the bar from 25 yards out. Kirsty Smith and Viviane Asseyi also both wasted good opportunities to find the net in a busy first 45.

Following positive results against Arsenal and Manchester United on home soil, the Hammers can take confidence from their showing and will rightly feel aggrieved to see Hayashi’s goal ruled-out midway through the first half…


The players were outstanding today and performed so well for big spells of the game against Chelsea – both in and out of possession.

We have been working really hard on the way we start games...and managing the momentum a bit better because we have definitely had emotional responses to some parts of games that we need to manage better so we can stay making good decisions and looking after the ball.

We are trying to make this place a really difficult place to come to and we have done that again today.
Rehanne Skinner

I thought we managed the pressure out of possession really well and stayed disciplined and worked hard for each other.

Then, equally when we were in possession, I thought we caused a lot of problems for Chelsea on counter-attacks and also created opportunities that pulled their backline out of shape. I am really proud of the players for that but really disappointed for them – because they worked so hard, and I felt that they deserved something out of the game.


Players know [they were good chances] – they’re not trying to miss; everyone is trying to put the ball in the back of the net.

It comes down to a bit of composure and being a bit ruthless at times and we are working hard to fix that. We are trying to be more clinical as a team because chances are falling to a whole host of different people.

That is great that we are creating chances – and it is not easy to do that against Chelsea – so the way we have played to create good opportunities is good – but we will get better at that because as players and staff, we will keep working [on being more clinical in front of goal.]


Since the start of the New Year, we have wanted to show the fans what we are about and make our home ground somewhere [fans] want to come to.

We want them to [enjoy watching] the games and make it really difficult for everyone else. Obviously, the result is not what we wanted today – but we are trying to make this place a really difficult place to come to and we have done that again.


For the fans, for us, for the players, who are working incredibly hard, we can’t keep having the same conversation every week.

The obvious thing that people are going to talk about is Honoka Hayashi’s goal – which was disallowed. It is never offside in a million years.

Unfortunately, we were on the end of two goals last week which shouldn’t have stood, the one against Tottenham, and the one today which takes us in at half-time at 1-1. It might not change the outcome of the game – I understand that – but the frequency [of incorrect decisions] it is just poor.

West Ham squad after Chelsea defeat

I am always the first to say we had our chances – four good chances - [to get something from the game].

I thought we managed to break down certain areas well against Chelsea and we want to make the most of those chances. But at the same time, we can’t be having goals [incorrectly] disallowed that have such a big importance in the game.


[Marika Bergman-Lundin] is transitioning and settling in [to the Women’s Super League.]

There has been loads of change for Mari but she has been growing and growing in training and in games for us. She has had opportunities in games, but this one was the biggest one, and you are thrown in the deep end with this, and I thought she coped really well.

She showed what she is capable of in the future, but you do just need to give players a bit of time to adjust, and I think she is moving in the right direction. I thought she did really well when we came on and we hope that she will continue that.


I thought we played some great football and moved the ball exceptionally well at times.

We want to put teams of the back foot when they come to this stadium, and they're loads of things we will reflect on positively from the game. Our work ethic is to keep getting better and moving forwards so we will be ready for Brighton & Hove Albion next week.


It is too early to tell on Katrina Gorry [who went off injured in the first half].

We need to make sure we see how that settles down over night and then get her assessed as early as we possibly can and see what the outcome is. She is in a boot – on a precautionary basis – as we want whatever swelling comes to settle down and then we will go from there.  


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