Ladies | Watford 1-0 Millwall Lionesses
Report by Tom Low
Watford FC Ladies secured victory over high-flying Millwall Lionesses on Thursday evening (October 12) in their opening Continental Tyres Cup group match.
A second-half moment of magic from substitute Adekite Fatuga-Dada secured all three points, and also recorded the Hornets' first win of the 2017/18 season, in front of a healthy crowd.
The Golden Girls had some early chances to take the lead as Millwall Lionesses just about scrambled the ball away from goal.
Leah Cudone’s effort flew inches past the post as another chance was created by Watford Ladies.
Millwall bounced back with a chance of their own as Bonnie Horwood saw her volley just scrape wide. Fran Kitching was called upon to make a crucial save to deny Rianna Dean from latching onto a loose-ball.
A fantastic opportunity opened for Watford as Ellie Sargent drove forward to float a wonderful ball across the Millwall goal, unfortunate not to find a fellow teammate.
Watford looked on top of the first-half with a fighting display, creating many chances throughout.
It was a confident start to the second-half for the Golden Girls, who looked bright in the early stages, creating an early opportunity as Rinsola Babajide drilled the ball across the box to fellow teammate Cudone who was unfortunate not to find the back of the net with her attempted flick.
Watford were knocking on the door again as captain Anneka Nuttall powered forward into space, allowing her enough time to get a shot off at goal.
There were very few chances for Millwall in the second-half, but Dean did have the ball in the back of the net, only for the assistant to raise his flag for offside.
The dominant display paid off in the 73rd minute, as Nuttall put a searching ball into the box to find Fatuga-Dada. The nippy winger timed her run to perfection, volleying in at the near-post.
Babajide came close with a curling effort to the bottom corner, calling Sarah Quantrill into action again for the visitors.
The winger then skilfully took on the Millwall defence and was able to drill the ball across the box, which just evaded everyone in yellow as Watford went in search of another goal.
The final moments were negotiated perfectly and the Golden Girls deservedly secured their first win of the season over a Millwall side that have enjoyed much success against the Hornets over the years.
Watford XI: Kitching (GK); Kerr, Nuttall, Jones, Sargent; Bragg (Puddefoot, 68), Maple, Will; Cudone (Fatuga-Dada, 62), Murray, Babajide
Subs not used: Baranowska (GK), Ward, Petkova, Neal
Goal: Fatuga-Dada (72)