Mana Iwabuchi’s rocket fires Aston Villa to WSL win over Tottenham


Mana Iwabuchi secured Aston Villa’s first home win in the Women’s Super League as they triumphed 1-0 over Tottenham.

Recent Villa arrival Iwabuchi scored with a spectacular strike from outside the box in the 12th minute at the Banks’s Stadium.

Despite Spurs’ domination of possession in the first half, Villa were able to hold off the visitors’ attacking threat and maintained their slender advantage going into half-time.

Tottenham mustered a handful of scrappy attempts after the break, but Villa’s solid defence continued to deprive them of any meaningful goalscoring opportunities.

With Saturday’s win, Villa move up two positions to ninth in the WSL table and are once again five points clear of Bristol City in the relegation zone, while Tottenham sit seventh.

“We wanted to go into half time with a clean sheet, which we could build on,” the Villa goalkeeper Lisa Weiss said. “Mana scored, which was brilliant timing for us, and then we built on that. I didn’t expect Mana’s strike, to be honest, but as soon as she hit it, I could see it was going in.

“She has very good technique and will help us a lot. She will get used to the rhythm now. It’s different to in Japan or Germany, where she’s played before, but she’ll get there and help us to do well.”

Rehanne Skinner, the Tottenham manager, was disappointed with her team: “We didn’t play out game at the start of the game. We gave too much time and space. For us, we didn’t do the basic well enough.”