Dalton’s dream teams: Simply the best

Part two of Sent Her Forward’s look back at the players who have most impressed and made me smile in best part of six years of reporting on women’s football

Deanna Cooper and Jo Wilson compete for the ball during the match between Brighton and QPR, Sep 6 2015 (Photo: Kevin Richards)

Deanna Cooper (centre) and Jay Blackie (right), two of the finest footballers I’ve seen, make both my first XIs (Photo: Kevin Richards)

I must have seen at least a dozen of those who took part in this summer’s Women’s World Cup in live club games.

Yet my selections for my Best Ever Team represent a footballing universe far broader than the game’s top global competition – or even just the Women’s Super League. Continue reading

Dalton’s dream teams: A few of my favourite things

A walk down Memory Lane as Sent Her Forward recalls some of the finest players I’ve had the privilege of watching

Wivelsfield Green's Leigh Farley gets in a tackle during their match against Bexhill United Reserves March 30 2014 Photo: Dave Burt

Leigh Farley scored the first goal I ever saw live in women’s football – but she did far more than that (Photo: Dave Burt)

It’s almost seven years since I began watching women’s football – and nearly six since I started reporting on it on Sent Her Forward.

Time for a list or two, I think. Continue reading

All eyes on Crawley as Arsenal and Manchester United come to town

Crawley Wasps after beating Coventry United in the FAW Cup third round, Jan 6 2018 (Photo: Ben Davidson)

Crawley Wasps beat Coventry United, leaders of the division above, to secure their fourth-round spot (Photo: Ben Davidson)

Women’s football in Sussex is set for another bumper FA Cup weekend after Super League Brighton and giant-killers Crawley Wasps landed home fourth-round ties against the mighty Arsenal and Manchester United.

And with Brighton playing their home games at Crawley Town this season, two of the biggest names in English football will be parading their skills within four miles of each other in four weeks’ time. Continue reading

Clinical Stanway shows wasteful Brighton how to finish

Steph Houghton and Kayleigh Green in action during Brighton's game against Manchester City, October 21 2018 (Photo: Geoff Penn/BHA)

City’s biggest win of the season lifted them to second, behind Arsenal, in the FAWSL (Photo: Geoff Penn/BHA)

Brighton (0) 0
Manchester City (2) 6 (Stanway 21, 63, 67; Weir 41; Parris 87; Emslie 90)

Super-slick Manchester City put on a commanding display to keep in touch with runaway leaders Arsenal at the top of the FA Women’s Super League and once again demonstrate to newly elevated Brighton how far they still have to go.

Teenage starlet Georgia Stanway gave Hope Powell’s strikers a lesson in how to finish, clinically dispatching three of her handful of chances while Brighton were left ruing their missed opportunities at the other end which might at least have earned them a more respectable scoreline. Continue reading

Babajide rocks Brighton to lift the mood on Merseyside

Rinsola Babajide being interviewed after Liverpool's win over Brighton, Sep 23 2018

Rinsola Babajide proved to be the match-winner after coming off the bench for Liverpool against Brighton

Brighton (0) 0
Liverpool (0) 1 (Babajide 85)

Substitute Rinsola Babajide broke Brighton’s hearts with a late winner to condemn the FAWSL newcomers to their third successive league defeat in a match they didn’t deserve to lose. Continue reading

Brave Brighton offer Hope for the future – but City slicker

Ini Umotong in action for Brighton against Manchester City in the FAW Cup, Feb 4 2018 (Photo: Kyle Hemsley)

Ini Umotong again showed her ability to trouble the best of opponents, albeit in a losing cause (Photo: Kyle Hemsley)

FA Women’s Cup 4th Round

Brighton 0
Manchester City 2 (Christiansen 45; Emslie 66)

For the second time in three months Brighton’s fast-developing team proved that they can live with the very best in English women’s football. Continue reading

Licence to thrill – but at a cost: the Super League winners and losers

Brighton celebrate winning the Preemier League play-off, May 2016 (Photo: Clive Jones)

Brighton won the Premier League Southern in 2016 and will be in WSL 1 next season (Photo: Clive Jones)

The race is on to see who can buy the best team in women’s football. 

If the creation of the Super League was a turning point in the game in England, the current upheaval represents a crucial, perhaps defining, watershed. Continue reading

Brighton to invest millions to realise Super League top-tier dream

The American Express Elite Football Performance Centre

Brighton’s women train alongside the men at the club’s Elite Football Performance Centre

Brighton & Hove Albion are prepared to plough more money into their women’s team to help them secure a place in the new-look top tier of the FA Women’s Super League.

In a not entirely unexpected move, the club have vowed to invest a sum “well into seven figures” to persuade the FA to grant Brighton Women one of the new licences to enable them to compete next season in FAWSL 1. Continue reading

Chelsea in cruise control but Brighton earn respect

Chelsea's Millie Bright and Brighton's Danni Buet in action, November 1 2017 (Photo: Geoff Penn/BHAFC)

Chelsea’s team of superstars were made to work for their victory against second-tier Brighton (Photo: Geoff Penn/BHAFC)

Brighton 0
Chelsea 3 (Kirby 13; Dunn 77; Ji 90+3)

Never has defeat tasted so good. Brighton’s Super League newcomers stood up to the current best team in the land and emerged with dignity and self-respect and the praise of both managers ringing in their ears. Continue reading

Gutsy Brighton show character to down Durham despite being reduced to 10

Brighton 3 (Gibbons 8; Umotong 26; Buet pen 85)
Durham 2 (Hepple 45, 58)

Brighton showed two sides to their character, shrugging off the twin setbacks of surrendering a two-goal lead and having their goalkeeper sent off to clinch a valuable and significant victory over Durham and give new boss Hope Powell a winning start. Continue reading