Tottenham Hotspur Women came into this match as a team a little bit rudderless. 2022 hadn’t been especially kind to Spurs, with only a FA Cup win over Championship side Liverpool to show from their early year matches.
So they really needed a jolt in the arm and a solid performance against Brighton & Hove Albion Women, a team that beat them back in October to hand them their first WSL loss of the season. Boy, did they get it! Kyah Simon put Spurs up in the first half, then Tottenham went on a second half blitz, scoring three goals in five minutes (Ashleigh Neville, Shelina Zadorsky, Simon again) as Spurs rolled to an emphatic 4-0 win at The Hive on Sunday.
It was a huge confidence booster as Spurs continue to push for a top three finish and a berth in the Champions League next year.
6’ — It’s a blustery day at Edgware. Twice already the wind has blown the ball off of the spot before corner kicks. It’s really whipping around out there which could make things unpredictable.
12’ — GOAL!!! KYAH SIMON! Spurs launched a LONG ball from deep courtesy of Molly Bartrip right over the top of Brighton’s back line, the Australian international found it and dinked it into the net. What a ball!
29’ — CLOSE! Summanen fires a corner kick to the back post and Rachel Williams fire a headed shot off the crossbar!
31’ — CLOSE AGAIN! Summanen latches onto a through ball into the box from Percival, goes low to fire a diving shot on target, and it dribbles just wide of the far post.
38’ — Yikes, nearly a costly defensive error for Spurs. Bartrip somehow manages to pass straight into Brighton’s press in front of Spurs’ box. Tottenham able to scramble the ball away, but that was a dangerous chance for Brighton.
44’ — Angela Addison picks off a ball in midfield and drives towards the Brighton box. Had Simon lurking in the area, but opted to shoot it herself, and it’s an easy save for the keeper Walsh.
47’ — SAVE SPENCER! Brighton put a ball into the box that glances off of Rachel Williams’ head and towards goal. Becky dives and makes a great save!
HALFTIME — A good performance from Spurs in the opening 45! A lovely goal, and a couple of very good chances in addition.
52’ — Spurs make their first sub as Ashleigh Neville comes in for Angela Addison. Skinner deploys her higher up the pitch in midfield as Asmita Ale is already playing in her position.
58’ — GOAL! ASHLEIGH NEVILLE!! Ria Percival got that sequence started by picking off a short pass off of a Brighton free kick. She instantly found Neville who had sprinted into space behind Brighton’s line and slotted past Walsh! 2-0 Spurs!
58’ — Yellow card for Spurs’ Eveliina Summanen for fouling Kaagman.
59’ — Brighton goes close. A ball into the box is flicked across goal by Danielle Carter. Whelan can’t turn the shot home for the visitors, and it’s a goal kick to Spurs.
62’ — GOAL!! ZADORSKY MAKES IT THREE! t’s a set piece from Percival. Rachel Williams heads it across goal, Summanen has her shot saved, but it’s spilled by Walsh and the captain pokes it into the net! 3-0!
63’ — GOAL!! KYAH SIMON AGAIN! Spurs lead 4-0! Goal-scorer Neville this time goes low to dispossess a Brighton defender, then puts a GORGEOUS ball to the back post. Kyah Simon made the run and fired it home. 4-0!
67’ — Sub for Spurs as Rosella Ayane comes on for Summanen, who played very well.
74’ — Sub for Spurs. Viktoria Schnaderbeck, the loanee from Arsenal, comes on for captain Shelina Zadorsky.
88’ — Williams goes down in the box for Spurs, but no call from the match official. That was very much a “nah, you’re already up big” kind of call, feels like that one is usually given.
FULL TIME! Spurs played out the string in the last few minutes, and the match ends. A huge win for Spurs which will boost their confidence that they are contenders for top four... or even three!
- Spurs needed a big match to boost confidence after a rough stretch here in early 2022 and boy howdy did they ever do it! This came against a team that beat them earlier in the season, a solid club that like Spurs were in the middle of a stretch of pretty poor results.
- Kyah Simon hasn’t exactly hit the ground running for Spurs this season, but the Australian international, recently back from the Asia Cup, put in her best performance in a Spurs shirt. She got two goals and set up another one in a performance that reminded you of her immense talent. Spurs have been waiting for someone else besides Rachel Williams to score goals... maybe Simon can do it after all.
- Ashleigh Neville was a second half sub for Spurs, but for Summanen, not Asmita Ale. Rehanne Skinner deployed her higher up the pitch in an attacking midfield role and she had an instant impact, first adroitly making the run for her goal, and later dispossessing a Brighton player and putting in a gorgeous ball to the back post for Simon’s second. Neville I think may be one of the only players left from the Spurs team that promoted to the WSL, and her game has grown along with the club. Outstanding match.
- I’ve been down a bit on Asmita Ale, who hasn’t always impressed. She quietly had an excellent match for Spurs — she’s not as dynamic at the RB spot as Neville is but she put in an excellent defensive performance today and was one of the reasons why Brighton barely sniffed Spurs’ goal. An imperious performance from Tottenham’s back line.
- Austrian captain Schnaderbeck was another late sub and looked as solid to me as Zadorsky. This looks like it might be a coup of a signing for Spurs. I wonder if they can get her permanently.
- Spurs have a couple of tough but winnable matches coming up — at last place Birmingham next Sunday, and a six-pointer at Reading on March 6 before a huge match home to Manchester City on March 13.