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Report: Bristol City Women 4 - 1 Watford Ladies

City Women put on convincing performance against bottom of the league Watford Ladies in front of impressive crowd at Stoke Gifford Stadium. 

Goals from Claire Emslie and Chloe Arthur gave City a 2-0 half-time lead, with Lauren Hemp and Hayley Ladd adding to the tally before Watford netted a consolation through Charlotte Kerr.

Bristol went ahead after just three minutes as Emslie collected the ball from Arthur, with her shot from 18 yards taking a heavy deflection to loop past Lucy Gillett.

The Vixens did not have to wait long to score their second as, after a period of sustained pressure, Jodie Brett floated a corner into the six yard box for Arthur to rise highest and nod home at the far post.

And the game was sealed on 68 minutes as substitute Hemp, who entered the fray minutes earlier, raced onto a through ball and fired home.

Watford grabbed a consolation goal on 74 minutes, with Kerr slotting home after Reid dropped a cross, but the hosts made it four on 90 minutes through Ladd, following in Charlie Estcourt’s long-range effort which came back off the post.

Bristol City captain Hayley Ladd believes the pressure is now firmly on FA Women’s Super League 2 leaders Yeovil after her side drew level with the league leaders following an impressive 4-1 victory against Watford at the Stoke Gifford Stadium.

Claire Emslie and Chloe Arthur gave the Vixens a 2-0 half-time lead, with substitute Lauren Hemp and Ladd herself adding gloss to the scoreline.

And while Charlotte Kerr fired a consolation for Watford, the City captain believes they could have had even more goals after last week's defeat to Everton, but feels the strain has now shifted to Yeovil, who play their g game in hand on Sunday.

“We all feel that we could have scored a few more, but we can take confidence from the fact that we got into those positions,” said Ladd.

“We have got the fortune of playing on a Saturday night and Yeovil have now got to do what they’ve got to do. Everything is in our hands now, we don’t care what other teams are doing, we are just focussing on ourselves and getting the points on the board for promotion.

“This win gives us great confidence, the past few weeks we have really worked on our attacking and the girls have done great today.

“We are now all really looking forward to Durham, but we know it won’t be easy.”

Defeat marked a fifth straight defeat for Watford, a run which has seen them ship 14 goals, with Kerr’s consolation just the second they’ve scored during that period.

But for captain Anneka Nuttall, the scoreline didn’t do justice to a Watford display better than most in recent weeks.

And with Millwall to come next week – the team immediately above Nuttall’s side in the FA WSL 2 table – the skipper believes there is still plenty to take heart from heading into the final weeks of the season.

“I’m gutted with the result,” she said. “We worked really hard but it is the same thing every week, we conceded early but we fought and I don’t think the score line reflects the performance we put in.

“I thought we matched them all over the park, and every player looked up for it, we weren’t scared of them at any point.

“Results haven’t gone our way over the past few weeks but there is a long-term plan here, so let’s wait and see what happens.”

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