Durham boss defends back four despite Oxford setback

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MANAGER Lee Sanders believes there are positives to take from Durham’s late FA Women’s Super League 2 defeat to Oxford United yesterday, but says there is still plenty of room for improvement.

Jemma Connor-Iommi scored a controversial late winner for Oxford at New Ferens Park, but Sanders says Durham’s defence were not entirely to blame for either of their conceded goals.

“We looked solid,” Sanders said. “(Kayleigh) Hines has scored a goal she may never score again in her life, and the winner is disputed from a corner.

“I think we’ve defended very well, but across the midfield and forward line we were poor.”

“Sarah Wilson’s come in from Newcastle and done a very good job at centre-half alongside Caroline Dixon. I think they were our two best players.”

Durham’s new signing, Emily Scott, broke the deadlock on 21 minutes, against the run of play, firing into the top of the net from close range after good pressing from Rosie Young high up the pitch.

Hines levelled proceedings on 40 minutes though, intercepting the ball in midfield before unleashing a rising 40-yard effort, which sailed over Danielle Hill into the top corner.

But just as the game looked to be heading for a draw, Connor-Iommi’s inswinging corner beat Hill on 83 minutes.

Becky Hanratty cleared the ball at the back post, but the linesman ruled it had crossed the line to give Oxford their maiden win.

DURHAM: Hill; Linsley, Wilson, Dixon, King; Hepple, Jordinson (Hanratty 82), Jennings (Christon 66); Young, Scott, Round (Hardy 46). Subs not used: Stonehouse, Atkinson. Att: 200

H The FA Women’s Super League has been newly expanded to two leagues for 2014. To watch all 18 clubs live in action buy tickets here: http://www.ticketstores.co.uk/fawsl