Belles head coach Zoey Shaw was delighted to see her side pick up their first win in pre-season after a 4-1 victory on the road at FC United of Manchester.
A Jasmine Saxton hat-trick set the Belles on their way to a convincing victory on the other side of the Pennines, and Shaw felt that after a slow start in the first half, her side really came into their own after the interval.
“We took a little bit of time to get going in the first half, but I was delighted with the way they played after the break, we gave them a lot of time on the ball, but we spoke to them at half-time and that obviously did the trick,” she said.
“Jasmine took the penalty really well to be fair to her, and she’s really shown her quality out there for me, she’s scored three and she’s shown what she can do when she gets herself in the right place at the right time, and she’s been a breath of fresh air up front.
“It was good for Lauren Breen to get on the scoresheet as well, she’ll be the first to remind everyone in training about that, but seriously, it was good to get a few goals on the board because we’ve struggled to find a way through in the other friendlies.
The win at Broadhurst Park came off the back of three tough tests for Shaw’s side against higher opposition in West Brom, Burnley and London City Lionesses, but the head coach believes those experiences against strong teams have really benefitted her own side.
“This game was more result-based for us and we said that to them before the game, we’d had a couple games where we’d worked on structure and positioning, here we wanted to get the win and start instilling that winning mentality,” Shaw added.
“We want everyone to be honest with each other, if they feel someone needs pushing along, we don’t want them to be afraid to tell them, we don’t want to be nice, we want to play good football but also get those messages across.
“You can really start to see the relationships beginning to develop out on the pitch now, we saw a lot more leadership on the pitch, not just from Breeny but others out there too, and I think that’ll be a big thing for us going forward.”
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