Derby County Ladies 6-1 Hull City Ladies: Tigresses heavily defeated by rampant Derby

Tom Griffin

Hull City Ladies put in a performance to forget as they were beaten comfortably by high-flying Derby County Ladies 6-1.

Derby were 3-0 up on the half an hour mark curtesy of Callan Barber, Ellie Gilliatt and Jodie Michalska.

Then there were two goals scored on the stroke of half time; Harley Skinner’s strike reducing the arrears for the Tigresses, before Derby immediately crushed the hopes of a second half comeback by dispatching another penalty deep into stoppage time.

After the interval, a Hannah Keryakoplis brace midway through the second half compounded further misery onto the Tigresses.

The contest hinged on defensive errors and Derby’s lively attacking play with Sophie Domingo causing a real threat down the right.

Whilst this became prominent as the contest wavered on, the Tigresses looked the more likely to threaten the Derby rearguard in the early exchanges of the game.

Harley Skinner’s speculative strike from range in the 2nd minute was inches away from looping into the back of the net, however, her effort rebounded off the cross bar and was adjudged to have bounced just before the goal line.

Moments later and the Tigresses put Derby’s defence to the test again. Jo Symmington sent in a dipping corner from the right which Alice Hughes was more than happy to meet with her head. The City midfielder made good contact but Callan Barber denied her with a clearance off the line.

In the 19th minute the home side were awarded a penalty. A perfectly weighted through ball found Ellie Gilliatt in the box; Florence Pegrum put herself in-between ball and attacker, but an on-rushing Meg Cooke’s momentum caused her to collide heavily with the attacker. Barber sent Cooke the other way and placed her penalty straight down the middle.

This incident caused a momentum switch in the contest with Derby looking to extend their advantage to which they did; doubling their lead in the 28th minute. A sweeping move through the thirds from right to left, ended with left back Megan Tinsley putting her cross on a plate for Gilliatt who had the easy job of tapping into the empty net.

City were stifled in possession and Derby continued to penetrate going forward. The visitors were on the receiving end of a third goal in the 32nd minute. The ball was headed into the air but dropped towards Michalska, who controlled it with her chest and volleyed into an open net.

If the Tigresses were to get themselves back into the contest, a set-piece was the likely avenue. A Harley Skinner free kick in the 42nd minute did just that, all but 20 yards out the City winger blasted the ball superbly over the wall and over the despairing Derby keeper to make it 3-1.

This goal scoring adulation was short-lived as Derby made it four with the final kick of the half. The home side were again, rewarded with another penalty after Symmington was adjudged to have dragged down her marker. A change of taker this time, but the same result with Gilliatt placing her penalty into the bottom left.

The Tigresses began the second half livelier of the two sides and tested keeper Sarah Morgan in the 50th minute. Florence Pegrum beat the Derby full back with ease before putting in a cross, however this was only half cleared into the path of Ellie Tanser who released a venomous strike that stung the outstretched palm of Bracewell.

Helen Lynskey almost continued her rich vein of goal-scoring form moments later. A free kick from range looked as though it was going to creep into the bottom left corner, but Morgan did well to tip the ball around the post after it bobbled up at an awkward height for the keeper.

After the Tigresses had a foray of second half chances, Derby began to assert their dominance, pushing bodies up the field in search of more goals. Keryakoplis was presented with an opportunity from the edge of the area on the hour mark, however she dragged the ball wide after picking up a stray pass.

The Ewe Rams top scorer wasn’t going to be denied her customary goal in the 66th minute though. Gilliatt’s teasing cross from the right was met by the head of Keryakoplis who saw her attempt blocked, she was quick to react on the rebound and blasted the ball through a myriad of City players.

Keryakoplis completed her brace and the home sides scoring minutes later to make it 6-1. Megan Tinsley provided the ammunition down the left as the Welsh forward converted from close range.

The Tigresses did create one last opportunity ten minutes from time. Katie Thompson found rare space in Derby’s left channel and she floated a cross towards the back post, however Helen Lynskey was unable to get the necessary direction to plant her headed effort on target.

The score line finished 6-1 on a bitterly disappointing afternoon for the Tigresses. However, under the guidance of Adrian Costello, the Tigresses have some winnable fixtures to come and they will be hoping to get some points on the board.

At full time Hull City Ladies coach Danny Johnson provided his views on the Tigresses heavy defeat:

“I think Derby County were a very good outfit and I think they played some lovely football today. You can allude to the concentration levels and speed of thought, I felt Derby managed that better than us today.”

“It wasn’t our best performance, but what was very pleasing was the players willingness to never give up and keep battling till the end.”

“Adrian had prior commitments today, but he said he wants to look at these areas defensively. So I’m sure he’ll be working hard over these next two weeks on this area before our next game.”

“I think everything is in place, we’ve got someone of Adie’s calibre and again, we have Suey Smith. They are both A license coaches, I have trust and the players have trust in their ability. We all have trust in the players ability, I think it’s just about the players buying into whatever they are asked to do now.”