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Preview: Blues Women v Bristol City

Blues are looking to complete a league double over Bristol City.

BCFC

Blues Women host Bristol City in the Barclay’s FA Women’s Super League on Sunday afternoon.

The teams will face off at the SportNation.bet Stadium (Damson Park), with Blues returning to Solihull after their three previous home fixtures took place at St. Georges Park, the National Football Centre.

Kicking off at 4pm, the match pits together two sides separated by just a couple of points in the standings after each earned a draw on the road in their last outing.

Carla Ward’s side fought back to finish 2-2 with West Ham United on an evening where Emily Murphy and Ruby Mace scored their first goals for the Club.

A few days later, Bristol City collected a point away to Tottenham Hotspur which saw them climb off the bottom of the table.

Blues come into the matchup knowing they had the better of the Robins earlier in the season, running out 0-4 winners back in October.

THE OPPOSITION:

Bristol City have given themselves a fighting chance of avoiding the drop having picked up eight points from their last six FAWSL matches. And should the Robins avoid relegation to the Women’s Championship it will be under the guidance of Matt Beard who left West Ham in November. He is in charge until the end of the season while Tanya Oxtoby takes maternity leave.

Their recent run has included a thrilling victory over Reading in front of the BT Sport cameras and a vital score draw with the Hammers, who going into the weekend sit bottom of the division. However, there have also been heavy defeats to Chelsea and Manchester City in the league, as well as to Emma Hayes’ side in the Conti Cup final.

These results followed a first league win of the campaign over Brighton & Hove Albion in which top-scorer Ebony Salmon (6) hit a brace. The striker then celebrated her recent England debut with the winner against the Royals in a game played at Ashton Gate.

Salmon has appeared in all but one of their league matches, with fellow striker Yana Daniels the only Bristol City player to have featured in all 17 games. Carla Humphrey, Jemma Purfield and goalkeeper Sophie Baggaley have each appeared on 16 occasions.

LAST TIME OUT:

Blues claimed a dramatic point in the capital as Mace hit a 94th-minute equaliser away to West Ham. Murphy had got Ward’s charges off to a fine start with her early goal, but efforts in the second-half from Emily van Egmond and Katerina Svitkova turned the game on its head and had Blues facing defeat. However, at the death, Sarah Mayling’s superb cross was volleyed home by Mace to spark celebratory scenes.

Bristol City also left London with a point in their most recent game, finishing up 1-1 with Tottenham Hotspur last weekend. Trailing to a Siri Worm free-kick after just three minutes, Beard’s team refused to crumble as they did not allow Spurs to extend their advantage. And after Salmon had hit the post shortly after half-time, Gemma Evans did manage to find the net as she headed in an equaliser with 52 minutes on the clock.

WE MEET AGAIN:

Bristol City 0 Blues 4, Sunday 18 October 2020

Blues made it back-to-back league wins when they beat Bristol City last Autumn.

Rachel Corsie got the scoring underway with a header from a corner before Mollie Green tapped home a second after good work from Connie Scofield.

This advantage was doubled within 20 minutes of the second-half. First Claudia Walker curled home and then, having been felled by Jasmine Matthews, Christie Murray proved lethal from the penalty spot to complete the scoring.

The only cloud was a late dismissal for Abi Grant who was shown a second yellow card in added time.

RECENT MEETINGS:

FAWSL 18 Oct 2020 – Bristol City 0 Blues 4

FAWSL 23 Feb 2020 – Blues 0 Bristol City 1

FAWSL 08 Dec 2019 – Bristol City 0 Blues 2

FAWSL 13 Jan 2019 – Blues 0 Bristol City 1

Conti Cup 12 Dec 2018 – Blues 0 Bristol City 0 (1-3 on penalties)

WATCH LIVE:

The game will be streamed live on the FA Player, kick-off is at 4pm.

MATCH OFFICIALS:

Referee: Kirsty Dowle

Assistant Referees: Reece Davies and Georgia Ball

Fourth Official: Stacey Pearson

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