A 0-4 defeat in your last preseason friendly is not the ideal way to prepare for the biggest League game in your history, but that’s what happened to Hull City Ladies on Sunday.
Speaking to FanaticHull after the game head coach, Danny Johnson who took charge of the side whilst manager Rachel Gay enjoyed a short holiday admitted his side where poor in the defeat and unusually lacklustre, but remained upbeat for the season ahead.
Danny said “We’ve have had a fantastic preseason, the players have been exposed to a new training regime and each one of them have responded extremely well. We are a very competitive squad with high expectations of each other individually and as a squad. We are very excited for the new challenges that lie ahead”.
In fairness to the coaching staff and squad which numbers about 40 players this season, the preseason schedule has been about trying out new approaches and tweaks in formations as well as building up fitness and ‘getting minutes in the legs’ of the large squad which may have given an unfamiliar slant on results.
The bulk of last season’s title winning squad remain in place with just minimal additions to the first team. One entirely new face to arrive this week is striker Amy Blinkhorn who arrives from Hykeham Town WFC where she was the stand out player last season, finishing as the club’s top scorer in the East Midlands League.
Amy will be a welcome addition to the Tigress front line and will hopefully carry on her fine goal scoring form of last season.
Two ‘old’ new signings are the returning Emily Smith and Misty Russell who return to the fold after a season away. Both Smith and Russell have electric pace and will give any opposition defender nightmares with their direct approach to the game. Both girls possess a venomous shot on them and they will provide a rapid outlet for the side.
One player not returning for a 5th season with the Tigresses is pacy right winger, Katie Thompson who announced her departure today via Instagram saying “I’ve had 4 years of laughs and brilliant memories with Hull City Ladies including 2 promotion celebrations. I will forever love these girls and the club but I’ve decided it time for a new challenge. I wish the club and everyone the best of luck for the new season”. Katie will be plying her trade in the white of Leeds United next season. We at FanaticHull wish Katie the best of luck for the future and we will watch her career with interest.
Youngsters like winger Harley Skinner and striker Charlotte Lammiman along with others have shown glimpses of real quality during preseason, but we anticipate they will be given time in the reserves to develop further before challenging for the first team, although it’s probable they will be utilised in the cup competitions.
The first cup game of the season comes just two weeks into the season. The draw was made today for the Determining round of the FA WPL cup and the Tigresses were drawn at home to Bradford City Women’s FC on Sunday 2nd September, the winner progresses in the League Cup whilst the losers will enter the Plate Competition, where last season The Tigresses reached the semi final before losing to eventual winners, West Ham United.
With this draw it means Gay’s side have 3 homes games in a row starting with Stoke this Sunday. kick off: 2pm followed by Derby County on the 26th before the Bantams cup game. Tickets for all these games and every home game can now be bought in advance from the clubs website: www.hullcityladies.com
The admission prices for the 2018-19 season are as follows:
Under 16’s: FREE
The Tigress match day programme will be on sale for just £2.00 at each home game.
As well as tickets the revamped website will bring you all the information and news of the Tigresses.
Photos by Dave Hare