Togetherness is the key ingredient for Pompey Ladies

Gemma Hillier, left, gets a hug after netting the crucial second goal on Sunday. Picture: Jordan Hampton
Gemma Hillier, left, gets a hug after netting the crucial second goal on Sunday. Picture: Jordan Hampton
Joe Hancott in action for Pompey Reserves against Southend. Picture: Colin Farmery

Harris hails Pompey Reserves’ performance

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Pompey Ladies manager Perry Northeast praised his squad’s togetherness after their superb 2-1 win against Brighton at Privett Park on Sunday.

The victory was a huge boost to the Blues’ promotion hopes in the FA Women’s Premier League southern division.

It dealt a severe blow to their south-coast rivals, who are also in the race for the league title.

The three points lifted Pompey above the Seagulls into second place in the table.

And Northeast’s side are now just one point behind leaders Cardiff with a game in hand.

Strikes from Lucy Quinn and Gemma Hillier secured Pompey an early lead on Sunday.

Brighton player Fliss Gibbons then hit back late on with what proved to be a consolation goal.

Blues boss Northeast was delighted with the way his players stood strong as a collective unit.

He said: ‘I’m so pleased with the result.

‘The girls really grouped together again against Brighton.

‘They really showed what we’re about as a team.

‘Overall I’m happy – happy with the performance, happy that the girls stuck to the game plan and happy with the result.

‘In the end it was a good day for us.

‘I wouldn’t say anyone in particular stood out and I also wouldn’t say anyone played a low-level game.

‘It was a strong team performance – everyone played their part and it would be unfair of me to pick out one or two players.’

Following Pompey’s loss against Millwall in the FA Women’s Cup last time out, Northeast had challenged his players to quickly get back into their stride.

And he was pleased with their response.

‘When the starting XI had been announced to the team, I think, perhaps, some players in the shirt may have felt like they were given another chance,’ said Northeast.

‘They did pay that back with a good performance – I was proud of all of them.’

Pompey take on Copsewood (Coventry) on Sunday at home (2pm).

Meanwhile, Vanessa Raynbird has left her position as director of football with the club.

Chairman Dave Coyle said: ‘It is with deep regret that we have to report that Vanessa Raynbird has left the service of the club.

‘Vanessa made a very significant contribution to our success in her 12-year tenure, initially as first team manager and lately director of football.

‘Going forward, we’re very sorry that Vanessa will not be there to support us in an official manner but we understand and respect her decision to leave the club.

‘We would like to thank Vanessa for everything she has done for us and wish her all the best for the future.’