Sheffield United Women 4 Blackburn Rovers 1 - Blades remain in hunt for Continental League Cup qualification
Sheffield United got back to winning ways in the FA Women’s Continental League Cup with a 4-1 win at home to Blackburn Rovers.
Katie Wilkinson was at the double while Sam Tierney and in-form Jade Pennock also found the target, while Saffron Jordan netted a consolation for Rovers.
A first-half double from Wilkinson took the striker to ten goals for the season after Blackburn lost Chelsey Jukes early on for a handball on the goal line.
It presented the opportunity for Wilkinson to score her first of the afternoon as she fired the resulting penalty low past Lauren Perry.
United looked to build on their goal and player advantage as both Olivia Fergusson and Aimee Palmer went close with efforts from distance, while Pennock headed wide at the back post.
Wilkinson did get her second when she got her head to Veatriki Sarri’s shot to double the lead just before half-time.
It was 3-0 within ten minutes of the restart. Sam Tierney got her head to Palmer’s cross from the right to score her first senior goal for the club.
The hosts were in cruise control and the in-form Pennock wasn’t to be denied when she hammered home substitute Alethea Paul’s cross at the far post.
Rovers did get a consolation with ten minutes to go when Naomi Hartley fouled Jordan inside the box, the striker picking herself up to fire high past Emily Batty.
United came close to a fifth as Palmer saw a shot saved and Keri Matthews an effort blocked, but the Blades recorded all three points in what is becoming a close group for qualification.
Sheffield United goalscorer Sam Tierney said: “I didn't expect to score! I had a chance in the first half but everybody probably saw it went over the bar. I saw the ball coming in and I just tried to get my head on it, but it's the points we're after.
“It's good win. The game was a bit weird, there were spells where we were right up there and then spells where we could definitely have done better. Going into a break now with three points is important and time also to get back together as we've had a few players with niggles.
“We have standards as individuals but as a team too. We pride ourselves on pressing and being aggressive and we noticed we hadn't done that in the last few games.
“We tried to implement it but when a team goes down to ten players so early it does affect the game.”
Sheffield United (4-3-3): Emily Batty; Sophie Barker, Leandra Little, Naomi Hartley, Veatriki Sarri; Sam Tierney, Aimee Palmer, Maddy Cusack; Jade Pennock, Katie Wilkinson, Olivia Fergusson
Substitutes: Alethea Paul for Cusack 60, Keri Matthews for Sarri 75
Substitutes not used: Becky Flaherty, Millee Clarke, Ellie Fletcher
Goals: Wilkinson 15 (pen), 40, Tierney 53, Pennock 68
Bookings: Hartley 79
Blackburn Rovers (4-3-3): Lauren Perry; Chelsey Jukes, Kelsie Burrows, Milly Robertson, Alex Taylor; Natasha Fenton, Serena Fletcher, Jess Holbrook; Lauren Davies, Saffron Jordan, Rhema Lord-Mears
Substitutes: Kayleigh McDonald for Robertson 33, Danielle Whitham for Davies 69
Substitutes not used: Danielle Hill, Kelsey Pearson, Charlotte Redman, Ria Montgomery, Ellie Stewart
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