Doncaster Belles ‘still getting to grips with top flight’ - Lipka

Kasia Lipka, pictured during the defeat to Man City. Photo: Carl Lygo

Kasia Lipka, pictured during the defeat to Man City. Photo: Carl Lygo

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Kasia Lipka admits Doncaster Rovers Belles are still adapting to life back in FAWSL1 following their promotion last season.

Belles have lost their opening three league games on their return to the top flight.

Kasia Lipka

Kasia Lipka

They were hit for six by unbeaten leaders Manchester City on Bank Holiday Monday.

And the comprehensive defeat came hard on the heels of a narrow 2-1 reverse at Birmingham City last week.

But midfielder Lipka is refusing to push the panic button and says her teammates are still adapting to their new surroundings.

Lipka said: “We’re still learning and obviously you can’t afford to make mistakes at this level.

“Last season we could have a bad first half and just pick it up in the second half but you can’t do that against these players.

“There is a massive jump in standard and obviously a lot of us have gone full time which is a big step up as well and we’re still getting used to it. A lot of the payers we’re playing have been here for two or three seasons.

“We’ve played Chelsea, Manchester City and have Arsenal coming up so it’s a hard start but we’ll learn from it.

“We want to be playing in the big league and against the best players and I just hope we can start getting better results. There are always positives to take and we have a few weeks now before Arsenal to work on it.”

City maintained their one hundred per cent start with a convincing 6-0 victory over the Belles.

Lucy Bronze opened the scoring in the seventh minute before Jill Scott added a second three minutes later with a powerful volley from the edge of the area.

City surged forward and Jane Ross headed in the third goal after 40 minutes after Nikita Parris’ effort came back off the bar.

Belles were finding life tough and four minutes later Jennifer Beattie netted a fourth with a thumping header from a corner while there was still time to add a fifth before half time as Kosovare Asllani grabbed her first City goal after converting Parris’ centre.

City eased off the gas a little in the second half and it was not until the 74th minute that the hosts notched up their sixth, Toni Duggan sliding in at the far post to convert another excellent Parris cross.

Natasha Dowie scored her first Belles goal in the defeat at Birmingham.

They host Arsenal on May 21.

Belles will attend a Civic Reception at Mansion House tonight to celebrate last year’s promotion from FAWSL2.