The Belles were given a good test by higher-division Nottingham Forest in the final game of the 2020/21 season.
The opening half was a tight affair, with the visitors well-drilled and composed on the ball.
Rosie Axten gave Forest the lead after seven minutes with a lovely chip from outside the area which left Ellie Sharpe with no chance.
Rachel Brown ensured the visitors went in with a 2-0 advantage at the break with a smart low finish at the far post.
Jess Andrew went closest to scoring for the Belles in the opening period from a free-kick.
A low finish from Charlotte Greengrass and a header from former Belles player Liv Cook added gloss to the scoreline for an impressive Forest side.
The Belles could not find a way back into the game, but Debbie Barry sent an effort just over and the visiting keeper gt out quickly to make a good stop as Sophie Brown raced through on goal from Kirsty Smith’s pass.