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Lack Of Cutting Edge Costs Blue Girls

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Everton Ladies boss Willie Kirk was left to rue his side’s inability to turn sound approach play into goalscoring opportunities as the Toffees were left frustrated by a goalless draw at Brighton.

The Blue Girls had the lion’s share of the possession at the People’s Pension Stadium but, despite transitioning through the pitch well, the lack of a cutting edge ultimately cost them as they settled for a point.

Nevertheless, the strong defensive performance was a positive to take as Everton bounced back from the 3-0 defeat at Chelsea a week ago.

Aileen Whelan struck the bar from 25 yards as aearly as the third minute but aside from that, the Seagulls rarely troubled Kirstie Levell in the away goal. 

But Kirk was left frustrated his side couldn’t build on that and affect the game at the other end.

“First and foremost, we are disappointed not to take the three points,” he said. “We feel we are good enough to go to places likes Brighton and win. 

“We came out on top in terms of final third entries but the game is not dictated by how many times you get into the final third but how effective you are in it. 

“We could and should have been better. We certainly created opportunities but when it came down to that final ball or final pass, we should have been better. And we will be better. 

“Our decision-making could have been better. A cool head in the final third could have made a big difference when creating a big goalscoring opportunity for us. 

“But it is something to work on in training. We have worked really hard on our fitness, our work rate and our defensive organisation but now it is time to score a few more goals to turn draws like this into wins.” 

After Whelan’s early chance, the Blue Girls grew into it and could well have been leading at the break had Angharad James shot either side of Marie Hourihan instead of directly at the Brighton keeper.

Inessa Kaagman also saw a shot go wide before James couldn’t muster enough power on a half-volley late on in the first half.

Taylor Hinds also saw a shot well blocked in added time.

The draw kept the Toffees second bottom but after Yeovil’s 2-1 defeat to Liverpool, Kirk’s side are now three points clear of the Glovers.

“I said to the players after that when you are involved in a scrappy game like that if you are not winning the game then you can’t lose it,” he added. 

“We want to pick up points every game. This was an away game that turned into a scrappy contest and it was important we took something from it. 

“Long term, we won’t be looking to see how far away from the bottom we can be. We will be striving to finish as high up the table as we possibly can. We don’t want to be a club that just looks at finishing clear at the bottom of the league.”

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