Report: Aston Villa 0 Blues 1
Blues edged out cross-city rivals Aston Villa to pick up their first Second City Derby league victory.
Claudia Walker’s second half strike was enough to give Carla Ward’s side all three points in a tense battle at Villa Park.
The team went into the game with only two subs due to injuries picked during the week. There were starts for Emma Kelly and Chloe McCarron in place of Sarah Mayling and Jamie-Lee Napier.
It was a nervy start to proceedings for Blues, a misplaced pass fell to Shania Hayles but she could only direct her effort into the arms of Hannah Hampton.
Blues defended a flurry of corners for the home side well, restricting them to half chances that failed to threaten Hampton.
The chance of the game for Blues came the way of Mollie Green. The midfielder gathered a pass from Connie Scofield, but her shot from distance was saved by Lisa Weiss.
Some neat build-up play from Walker created our second chance soon after. The striker’s reverse pass into Green opened up the space and split the defence, but her rising strike was saved by the ‘keeper.
Blues almost capitalised on a mistake from Weiss early in the second half. The keeper's miskicked clearance only found its way to Green, who volleyed wide.
Both sides continued to jostle for possession with neither of the two teams able to muster any clear-cut opportunities.
Blues managed to break the deadlock with just under 20 minutes. Lucy Whipp persevered and chased the ball down before firing in a cross. Elisha N’Dow failed to clear and Walker was there to power it in off the underside of the bar for her fifth in five games.
With the victory, Blues moved up to sixth in the table and secured their third league win of the season.