By Tom Lea
Cardiff City Ladies returned to league action with a bang, securing a 6-0 win over Hounslow Women at a very wet Centre of Sporting Excellence on Sunday afternoon.
The goals came from Cori Williams, who scored a brace, as well as Jasmine Turner, Nia Rees, Morgan Rogers and Hollie Smith.
After a scrappy start, which saw Nadia Lawrence denied by Katie Chan before Eman Kassem blasted over Laura O’Sullivan’s crossbar from a tight angle for the visitors, the hosts got a breakthrough in the 20th minute. After some lovely hold-up play from Williams, she slid the ball through for Nia Rees who cut inside from the left and finished with aplomb into the bottom corner.
It could’ve been 2-0 before the break but for an incredibly late flag from the linesman after Cori Williams had skipped round the goalkeeper and slid the ball home following some determined work from Olivia Thompson.
Following the interval, the hosts did not have to wait long for the second goal to come, Williams scoring from the penalty spot after a handball from one of the Hounslow defenders.
Two minutes later, Cardiff got their third goal, as Rogers placed an effort into the bottom left corner from the edge of area beyond the despairing dive of the Hounslow number one.
Shortly after the hour mark, the hosts got their fourth, with Thompson again playing provider, this time sliding the ball through the visitor’s backline for Jasmine Turner, who danced round the onrushing Chan and slotted the ball calmly into the unguarded net.
Williams got her second 17 minutes from time as a long ball over the Hounslow defence found Rees who combined with Turner and Thompson to work the ball across the area for the striker who kept her composure and guided the ball home.
In the final minute, the visitors misery was well and truly compounded in bizarre fashion as a goalbound effort from Lailah Muscat struck Hollie Smith on the floor and the deflection from the centre-half diverted the ball into the corner to complete a marvellous return to competitive action for the hosts.