Brighton & Hove Albion manager Hope Powell was pleased with her side’s game management as The Seagulls defeated Bristol City 3-1 at The People’s Pension Stadium this afternoon.
With Bristol City needing a win to have any chance of avoiding relegation, Brighton & Hove Albion put in a really professional performance from the first minute until the last, proving to be too good for Matt Beard’s side on the day.
Speaking to FAWSL Full-Time after the match, Powell hailed her side’s management of the game as Albion avoided getting pulled into a real scrap, maintaining their game plan and structure in the process.
“I’m really pleased with the way that we managed the game,” Powell said. “That was the talking point all week, that we could get dragged into an absolute dogfight if we didn’t manage the game.
“I think today, we managed it, we played the way that we wanted to play, we knew that they would come at us and try to pull us into a dogfight which they are very good at.
“On reflection, I am very pleased with our performance. The players just tried to manage the game, stayed relatively calm and we were able to perform.”
Another aim ahead of the game was for Brighton & Hove Albion to secure a first top half finish in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League. This afternoon’s victory made that possible with The Seagulls leapfrogging Reading into sixth as The Royals lost 5-0 at Chelsea.
Commenting on her side’s final placing, Powell said “This is only our second proper season in the FAWSL, people think that we have been here a long time but this is still relatively new to us. We are still learning about how to compete in this league and next season is going to be really challenging.
“The players wanted to keep looking up and this was a really big win for us today to make sure that we finished sixth but make no mistake, we are still learning, the players are still learning. We just want to build on what we have done, we know next season is going to be tough and we just have to be prepared for that.”
Brighton & Hove Albion’s sixth-place finish comes in their 30th anniversary year. The club’s next target is to push on higher up the table as they look to qualify for the UEFA Women’s Champions League for the first time in their history.