Hope Powell admitted that her side played below their usual standards, after Brighton & Hove Albion's frustrating 1-0 defeat to Bristol City in their FA Women's Super League opener.
Lucy Graham’s 71st-minute strike was enough to separate the two teams at the Broadfield Stadium, and Powell reflected on a number of missed opportunities throughout the 90 minutes.
She said, “I’m disappointed with our performance today. I’m not sure if they [Bristol] deserved to win the game, but they took their goal very well and it gave us a big lesson.
“We need to score with the chances we create, and it’s disappointing that we didn’t take any of them.
“If you don’t take your chances then you’ll be in trouble. Their goal was a good effort and they managed to slow the game right down afterwards.”
Powell had a number of players missing through injury ahead of today’s game, but refused to use this as an excuse and is now looking for a reaction from her players.
“We’ve had quite a few [injuries]. It’s been crazy and we’ve had a few innocuous ones which have been unfortunate, but that gave a chance for other players to step up in their absence.
“Hopefully we can improve; we’ve got some tough games ahead, but I’m hoping that we’ll dig in, not play like that again and take our chances. We’ve got to do the basics better.”
Albion are at home again next Sunday against London Bees in the FA Continental Tyres Cup, and the Seagulls boss is targeting a much-improved display against the Women’s Championship side.
“It gives the players more game time and more minutes on the board. Those players that didn’t play will get a chance to do so, and it’s a good distraction for us.
“We expect it be another tough game for us in what will be a challenging season, and we need to quickly learn from today’s match.”