Matt Beard said his West Ham United side must put Saturday’s disappointing defeat at home to Arsenal immediately behind them and focus on the season to come.
The Hammers’ first match at Dagenham & Redbridge Stadium ended with the visitors, Arsenal, scoring nine goals and beating the Irons.
Beard was happy with how his side started the game but knew that captain Gilly Flaherty’s dismissal for a second yellow card in the first half changed the game, and now wants his side to learn from this weekend’s frustrating result.
“I thought we started the game excellently,” Beard said after the match. “I thought we were unlucky to go a goal down, but we responded well and got back into the game.
This will be a big learning curve for some of our new players, and we can’t let it define our season.
“Gilly, with the sending off, just needs to keep herself in control. But when you play these top teams and those decisions go against you, it does make it harder.
“I just said to the girls after the game that we can’t allow that to happen. It will be a big learning curve for some of our new players, and we can’t let it define our season. We need to draw a line under it and move forward.”
Saturday’s game was the first time since February that West Ham United were able to play in front of supporters, as the pilot event saw 734 supporters watch the Irons in action.
Despite the result on the pitch, Beard was delighted to welcome the fans back and was thrilled to have them with his team at Dagenham & Redbridge Stadium.
He added: “The fans are fantastic, week in and week out, when they’re able to be here for us. It’s been a pleasure to see them grow with us over the years and it was great to have them here with us today.”