Match: Aston Villa Women v London City Lionesses
Competition: FA Women’s Championship
Date: Sunday 15th December 2019
Venue: Boldmere St Michaels FC
Follis 11, Syme 26, Ewers 75
Rogers, Haigh, Ale, Ewers, Hutton, Syme (Welsh), West, N’Dow, Hayles (Hassall), Johnson (Greengrass), Follis. Unused subs: Kosinska, Richards, Hanssen.
Story in brief
Aston Villa Women are top of the FA Women’s Championship at Christmas after extending their unbeaten run to 11 games with a hugely impressive victory against London City Lionesses.
The visitors came out of the traps flying and took the lead early on when Ellie Mason waltzed through the Villa backline and fired into the far corner.
But the home side hit back quickly through Emma Follis before Emily Syme looped an effort over the keeper to see her side 2-1 up at half-time.
There were plenty of nervy moments for Villa in the second half, including a free-kick that smashed the bar, before Marisa Ewers sealed the win with a superb drive from 25 yards.
Top at Christmas
Villa have been almost faultless in the league this season, winning ten times and drawing once in 11 games.
Durham are the only side to have taken points off Gemma Davies’ team this season, and they were well worth another win on Sunday.
The result leaves Villa three points clear at the top of the table with nine games left to play.
Star in the making
Emily Syme has played her way into the starting line-up over the course of the season, making herself an important part of the team with her all-action displays.
She shined once again on Sunday, starting attacks, making key tackles and getting on the scoresheet with a long-range effort.
Her shot may have taken a deflection, but Syme won’t have cared as she notched another goal from central midfield.
Ex-Blues having a ball
Villa shocked a lot of people in the summer with the acquisitions of Marisa Ewers and Emma Follis, who dropped down a division from rivals Birmingham.
As expected, the pair have brought a lot of quality to the team, and their influence was plain to see against a top four side.
When Villa were on the back foot, they were able to wrestle back control for their team and when going the other way, they both chipped in with crucial goals.
Ewers’ strike was particularly impressive, shooting her way into Goal of the Season contention with a long-range screamer.
Aston Villa Women are finished for 2019 and have a break over the festive period before returning to action in the New Year.
A huge game against title challengers Sheffield United awaits as Villa journey north before their first home game of 2020 against Charlton on 2nd February.