Skipper Discusses Defeat

Meg Bowyer

Stoke City Ladies lost their first match of the season this afternoon, but there were positives for captain Meg Bowyer to take.

The skipper spoke to Stoke Loud & Proud following the 2-0 defeat at home to Blackburn Rovers Ladies.

Bowyer told us: “We kept going and were unlucky late on. We nearly scored three or four times in the same attack.”

Sadly by that time Stoke were already two goals down, but it could have been worse were it not for the excellent Natalie Hall in goal, who made some outstanding saves to keep the scoreline down.

“Tilly had an outstanding game. She was the best player on the pitch. But there was good keeping on both sides.”

Whilst Hall was superb, she was beaten by a Lynda Shepherd penalty and an audacious drive from Saffron Jordon in the first period.

Ultimately, fitness played a part for Stoke, mainly due to a lack of training during pre-season with players utilising their spare summer time by chipping in to get their new Community Drive stadium ready for the big kick-off.

As Bowyer says: “We’ve progressed with facilities from Stone- we’ve now got a committee room, a club house and all the hard work that’s been put into it makes it our real home. It’s good to turn up and think ‘we’ve done this and really made it our own’.”

Next up for the Ladies is a trip to newly promoted Leicester, and Bowyer knows it will be no easy task.

“They’ve brought players in and they’ll be under pressure to get points as they’ll predict to be in a relegation battle come the end of the season, so they need all the points that they can get. Hopefully we can take confidence from the positives of today into next week and get all three points.”

With a number of players still missing, there was no shame in losing to promotion favourites Blackburn today. And Stoke’s captain remains optimistic for the remainder of the campaign.

“I think we can go the same as last season (Stoke finished fourth, two points behind Rovers). I think we can push for a top two finish once everyone is back. We want to retain the County Cup, get as far in the FA Cup as we can and get in the semi-final or final of the League Cup.”

It promises to be an exciting campaign for Stoke City Ladies. Make sure you’re part of it by heading down and supporting Bowyer and her team-mates at Norton during the 2016-17 season.

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