The Football League Paper - - WOMEN'S FOOTBALL WEEKLY -

BRISTOL Academy’s sea­son so far has been ar­du­ous but spare a thought for Jade Boho Sayo – the striker who flew 4,000 miles be­fore scor­ing the win­ner against Notts County on Wed­nes­day.

The Vix­ens, FA Cup fi­nal­ists in 2013, have suf­fered a mis­er­able cam­paign so far and find them­selves bot­tom of WSL 1 af­ter ten games.

Yet Equa­to­rial Guinea in­ter­na­tional Sayo has proven a smash hit since ar­riv­ing from Rayo Val­le­cano last month and has gone the ex­tra mile to aid Bristol’s cause.

Af­ter help­ing her coun­try beat Nige­ria in ex­tra-time on Sun­day, Sayo missed her ini­tial con­nect­ing flight to Madrid.

Yet the 28-year-old still made it to Meadow Lane and scored her fifth goal in four games to se­cure Bristol’s first league win of the sea­son.

“She is in­spi­ra­tional,” said Bristol boss Wil­lie Kirk, who picked Sayo up from the air­port on Tues­day morn­ing. “Other play­ers will see her as that fo­cal point that they can get energy from.

“And there is the small fact that she prob­a­bly ran a minimarathon in that 90 min­utes as well.The ground she cov­ers, the work-rate she gave is just un­be­liev­able.”

Jess Clarke ter­rorised the Bristol de­fence early on and Du­nia Susi al­most got on the end of her cross to grab an opener for the hosts, who were beaten in the FA Cup fi­nal at the week­end.

That opener, how­ever, went to the visi­tors af­ter 22 min­utes when a de­flected ball into the box fell to Boho Sayo to loop a header over Carly Telford.

Susi then went close again, de­nied by the post af­ter head­ing a cor­ner goal­wards, be­fore Boho Sayo rat­tled the cross­bar from just in­side the Lady Pies’ half.

Eng­land de­fender Laura Bas­sett fired over from six yards late on and the pres­sure in­ten­si­fied but Notts could not find a lev­eller and striker Clarke is ea­ger to move swiftly on from the set­back.

“We’re dis­ap­pointed with the game but we’re all ex­pe­ri­enced play­ers and we’ve got that bounce­back­a­bil­ity,” she said.

“Credit to Bristol, they played some good football and they man­aged to get a goal early on that didn’t help but, at the same time, I think we’ve got the play­ers that can put the ball into the back of the net.

“We played some good football, it was just the fi­nal third that let us down.We had the chances and, vi­tally, you need to score to win the game and it just wasn’t hap­pen­ing.”


SO HAPPY: Bristol celebrate Jade Boho Sayo’s win­ner and, inset, Bristol keeper Mary Earps chal­lenges County’s Jess Clarke

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