Reaction: "It Was A Pure Team Effort."
Sheffield FC Ladies' dramatic 4-3 win against Tottenham Hotspur gave the hosts their first three points in five league matches, and they were made to work very hard by a Spurs side equally as desperate for the points.
After just 17 minutes, the match was evenly poised at 2-1 with Coral-Jade Haines' goal for the visitors being sandwiched by a brace from Sheffield forward Melissa Johnson.
Both sides were reduced to ten players shortly before half-time after an off-the-ball altercation involving Hannah Cain and Sophie McLean, but Sheffield managed to extend their lead in stoppage time with Johnson again making it 3-1 at the break.
Two changes at half-time gave Spurs fresh impetus which paid dividends as substitute Bianca Baptiste reduced the arrears 20 seconds into the second half, but the hosts restored their two-goal cushion six minutes later when Katie Anderson capitalised on a deflected cross.
When Jenna Dear was shown a second yellow card, Sheffield were faced with the unenviable task of defending that lead for 30 minutes, a task that looked all the more unlikely when Sarah Wiltshire's superb volley on 68 minutes flew into the roof of the net to make it 4-3.
But defend they did, working exceptionally hard to restrict Spurs' opportunities in spite of their dominance in possession for the remainder of the match, and holding out for a vital three points.
Sheffield defender Sarah Jackson summed up the mood in the Sheffield camp following the game: “We’re all pretty tired as you’d expect. It was a great game - it really did have a bit of everything in it. You’ve got to give it to the players at the end for holding on for the three points."
"We all grafted for each other and we got each other through it. Everyone backed each other up and made sure we challenged Spurs for everything. We’re really happy to get the win."
“It was a pure team effort. Even with the goals too - they were all team goals. Everyone today was absolutely class - we’ve got to take that into the next one and keep showing that effort."
“It’s a massive boost for the players ahead of next week. It’s something to build on and we need to keep pushing on from this. We need to use this for future games so hopefully we can step on from there.”
Tottenham striker Wendy Martin commented: “It’s hard. We’re really disappointed. We know we can play better than we did and that’s the most disappointing thing. When we came out and got the early goal in the second half, we thought we could go on to win it, but unfortunately we’ve made mistakes."
“We needed to control the game better than we did. Once we got ourselves back into the game, we needed to maybe concentrate a little bit more in order to control the game. We didn’t do that and we let them back into it."
“It’s always going to be an uphill battle when you’re two goals behind, and our mistakes gave them a few goals. We scored some great goals today. The team worked really hard. Whatever happens on the pitch, we always stick together. We will work hard on the training pitch to correct and put the things right that we did wrong today and go again next week.”