This season the Liverpool Ladies have been nothing short of outstanding, fantastic team spirit and performances meant they went into this final day battle with Bristol Academy needing only a point to be crowned Champions.
Bristol got us underway and it was a nervy opening from both sides, Fara Williams had the first chance of the game but her shot went over the crossbar.
Natasha Dowie and Nicole Rolser were really linking up well on the left side, playing neat one-twos and creating a few chances. Rolser cut straight through the middle of the Bristol midfield at one point but the return pass from Dowie was cut out.
The Vixens brought a vocal travelling ‘Smurf Army’ who can be proud of their teams goalkeeper, Siobhan Chamberlain the sole reason the final scoreline was less than what it could of been with a string of fine saves – including a fingertip save from Rolser that many believed was in.
After a lot of Liverpool pressure the Bristol defence started to creak, Fara Williams seen a strike hit the post. The frustrated defence then produced simutaneous fouls, nothing came from the first free kick however Nicole Rolser was then brought down in the box.
Liverpool are lucky to have a penalty taker like Louise Fors in the team, cool under pressure the super Swede stepped up to make it one-nil to the reds.
Following the Liverpool goal Bristol were re-motivated, only 3 points for them would win the league. Laura Del Rio cheekily attempted lobbing Rachael Laws. An attempt that went close but thankfully wide.
For the first 5-10 minutes of the second half, Bristol were pushing on trying to break through the rock solid defence of Whitney Engen and Gemma Bonner. The duo sat tight and did a brilliant job keeping Bristol’s Spanish duo of Natalia and Del Rio quiet.
The game was mostly being fought in the middle of the park, Katrin Omarsdottir and Fara Williams managed to keep on top controlling the battle. Amanda Da Costa again proving to be the most determined player on the pitch and again giving 110% in the red shirt.
In the final 20 minutes, the chances flowed for Liverpool. Natasha Dowie and Amanda Da Costa seen headers just wide of the post, while an offside was given against Dowie when she was through on goal which I’m not too sure of – I haven’t seen any replays yet!
Katrin Omarsdottir then scored to make it 2-0 to Liverpool and put us firmly in the driving seat, Katrin had had an earlier chance at a corner but was unlucky not to be able to control her header. Natasha Dowie provided the assist with a brilliant knock back from a free kick.
During the final 10 minutes goal-scorer Louise Fors, Corina Schroder and Fara Williams made way for Sarah Gregorius, Becky Easton and Jess Holbrook and Liverpool held their resolves to win the win by 36 points – a new record in the WSL.
Liverpool’s performance on the day deserved a bigger goal margain, but again credit to Siobhan Chamberlain who has been fantastic for Bristol all season.
POTM Nicole Rolser
Laws, Schroder (Easton), Bonner (c), Engen, Bronze, Omarsdottir, Williams (Holbrook), Fors (Gregorius), Da Costa, Rolser, Dowie
Attendance today was 2,165 – absolutely amazing & our record crowd! Hopefully the majority will be back next season.
This season has flown by – particulary the second half. I have had an incredible time running this blog, the twitter and writing for This Is Anfield. Thank you to everyone who reads and follows! Do stick with me throughout the off-season, although the Ladies season is over I’ll be bringing you news from the international games – Sarah Gregorius and New Zealand have a huge game against Whitney Engen’s USA and England also have another World Cup Qualifer coming up which hopefully will have some of our players involved. Whitney is also off to Sweden to play for Tyreso so will be bringing you her results from there!
The End of Season review will be online over the next week, unfortunately last night my laptop died (which is why I’m now sat in the Uni library, Bonner shirt on and Engen’s boots next to me typing this up) but I will have it on as soon as it’s done! If you haven’t already then do vote for your Player of the Season, so far the frontrunners are Natasha Dowie, Nicole Rolser, Lucy Bronze and Whitney Engen.
Thank you again, see you next season!