RACHEL FURNESS may have bagged the latest winner for Sunderland Ladies but she is backing Beth Mead to hit the goal trail in Women’s Super League.
Mead registered the first Lady Black Cats goal in WSL 1 when she headed in Keira Ramshaw’s cross in the stunning 2-1 win at champions Liverpool.
I can put money on it that she will score goalsRACHEL FURNESS
But for all the threat she has posed in the back-to-back home games against Manchester City and Bristol Academy, the England U23 forward has not found the net since.
She did everything but score in Saturday’s 2-1 victory over Bristol Academy.
Mead hit the bar with a header from a Ramshaw right-ring cross while she was denied THREE times by stand-out Bristol keeper Mary Earps’ excellent saves.
“Beth is on fire at the moment,” said Furness, who headed in the 72nd-minute winner against Bristol.
“She was unlucky not to score but she’s going to continue to work hard and they will come.
“I can put money on it that she will score goals.”
Sunderland have scored four times in WSL1 since their arrival in the top women’s division – and Mead has contributed to all of them.
She headed in the first in the televised victory at Liverpool and was chopped down for the second-half penalty which Brooke Chaplen put away against the Reds.
On Saturday at Hetton, her pull back in the opening seconds of the second half allowed Chaplen to level for the Lady Black Cats and after the 19-year-old was fouled, Furness headed in Vicky Greenwell’s free-kick.
For all the early-season brilliance from Mead, Sunderland are proving they are not a one-woman team.
Furness and Chaplen have found the net in WSL1 and Ramshaw was a scorer in the FA Cup.
Sunderland also have Natalie Gutteridge on the bench while close-season signing Suzanne Mulvey has yet to play in the top flight because of illness.
“There’s Keira on the wing who can score,” added Furness.
“There are goals from all over the pitch and it’s good that we have got different areas where goals can come from.
“We are a goalscoring team and we will score goals this season.”
Sunderland’s prowess will be tested this Sunday when they come up against one of the meanest defences in WSL1.
Carlton Fairweather’s team visit Arsenal, who have conceded only one goal in the opening three games of the programme.
The visit to Borehamwood will be a tough ask, though the incentives are huge – should Sunderland win they would leapfrog the Gunners into second while a draw would keep them in the top half of the table.
Sunderland showed their character to come from behind to beat Bristol Academy on Saturday.
They also made a number of chances but Furness said there are elements to work on in all areas.
“There are some positives and negatives to take out of every game and we’ll put that into training this week and put it right in the up and coming match,” said Furness who was delighted to get on the goal trail.
“I know where Vicky aims her free-kicks.
“In training we do that week-in, week-out.
“I knew where it was going and I had to try to get on the end of it.”