On a cold Remembrance Sunday Millwall Lionesses unbeaten league run continued, as they saw off Oxford United 1-0 at St Paul’s Sports Ground thanks to a goal from Ella Rutherford.
217 fans turned up to watch the South-East London side hoping to move ahead of Oxford in the league.
The team received a setback during the week when they were docked three points for fielding an unregistered player against Watford Ladies at the start of the season, giving them even more incentive to get the three points.
The game started off well for the hosts who looked to score an early goal and settle themselves, but the Oxford defence held firm until the eighth minute.
Rutherford and Rianna Dean linked up well on the edge of the Oxford box to give Rutherford a shooting opportunity. It was not the most powerful effort on goal, but Demi Lambourne in the Oxford goal made a meal of the situation as she palmed it in to her own net.
The game went quiet for the majority of the first half, with both sides defences refusing to be broken as Oxford searched for an equaliser.
Goalkeeper Sarah Quantrill made some fantastic saves to ensure Millwall held on to their lead. Up the other end was a different story, with The U’s keeper rarely tested as the Lionesses began to struggle in the final third.
Going in at half time the crowd perhaps expected more from two top half table sides, but it was 1-0 to Millwall, with Oxford having it all to do to keep their unbeaten record intact.
The second half was slow to get going as both sides failed to retain possession in the middle of the park.
In the 57th minute the hosts should’ve doubled their lead. Charlie Devlin sent Rianna Dean through one on one, but Lambourne stood her ground and saved the shot which resulted in a Millwall corner that came to nothing.
In the final moments of the game Ellie Mason almost got the goal that secured the game, but her shot from a tight angle hit the post and crossbar before it bounced away allowing Oxford to clear.
Whilst it may not have been the best performance from Millwall Lionesses this season, they grinded out the win for a valuable three points which will boost their spirits after the disappointing midweek news.
After the game Devlin said: “This weeks been really tough for the girls, we seem to keep getting somewhere then knocked back down. The motivation in training and the preparation for the game was really well thought out and we showed it. It wasn’t the best performance, but we got the three points in the end and it’s a good three points.”
Millwall Lionesses have a break between now and their next game in the Continental Tyres Cup, when they host WSL 1 side Reading on 3rd December.