Monday 14 May 2018

Schillaci: Team effort required on Sunday

​Jenna Schillaci says Tottenham Hotspur Ladies are ‘disappointed’ with how they performed after lady luck was absent and numerous chances went amiss against Aston Villa, writes Khalid Karimullah.

Schillaci’s 40th minute opener had The Lilywhites on course for the three points in their penultimate game of the season, with a top five finish in sight. However, when Elisha N’Dow bundled home an equaliser, it left a feeling of having dropped two points rather than a point gained.

And the ever-consistent skipper has called on her team-mates to produce their best in their final game of the season, when London Bees arrive at Cheshunt Football Ground on Sunday (2:00pm).

Schillaci wants The Lilywhites to prove their capabilities on Sunday

Schillaci wants The Lilywhites to prove their capabilities on Sunday

“We’re all really disappointed with our performance as a team and individually,” she said. “We started off well, created lots of chances and we should have gone in more than 1-0 up in the first-half. We’re frustrated to only come away with one point, but the standard of football wasn’t good enough from us.

“We can’t put our finger on it. In the past two games against Durham and Millwall, everyone worked their socks off continuously for 90 minutes and played their hearts out. I think maybe we lacked it a bit, we just didn’t want it enough on the pitch. We felt we should have had more, but we’re going to go away and we’re determined to finish on a high next week against London Bees.”

Spurs should have been out of sight before being pegged back in the second-half following a ruthless performance of chances created, yet without capitalising.

A similar pattern was evident in the 1-1 draw with Millwall Lionesses earlier this month and Schillaci says although Karen Hills’ side are still learning at this level; she warns there can be no room for error at both ends of the pitch.

“I think it (the timing of their goal) put them on the front foot for a bit after that and they put us under a lot of pressure defensively,” she continued. “We know in this league if we don’t take our chances then we’ll get punished and that’s what happened.

“It’s really frustrating; especially in the Millwall match where we played so well and we were really unlucky to finish with a draw - we should have come away with the three points. I just think we didn’t perform as a team today and we need to go away and look at our own performances. It could have been a different story had our chances gone in before half-time.

“I think we created a lot of chances in the first-half. We started well, then lost it a bit in the middle of the second-half and then we got back on top. It’s important we take the positives, but we also need to learn from it.

“I think it’s been a really positive season for our first year in the league. We’ve held our own, competed and the football we’ve played has been really good at stages. Next season, we just need to work on consistency, performing in every game at a high standard and winning games by taking our chances.”

As alluded to, a Wendy Martin double sealed a 2-1 win for Spurs at The Hive against Sunday’s opponents back in October.

And Schillaci says if they play the way they can, in front of their home crowd, there’s no reason why the season shouldn’t end with a winning feeling.

“We’re back on our home ground in front of our own fans for the last match of the season and we’re going to go all out for the three points,” she finished. “It’s going to be a tough match, they’re a really strong side. It was a difficult match when we played them at the beginning of the season and it’s going to be another similar game. If we all turn up and play as a team, then there’s no reason why we can’t finish with a win.”

Photographs with thanks to Wu's Photography.