Doncaster Rovers Belles: '˜No more worrying about the opposition' - Zoey Shaw

Imani Todman in action against Stoke City. Photo: Julian BarkerImani Todman in action against Stoke City. Photo: Julian Barker
Imani Todman in action against Stoke City. Photo: Julian Barker
Doncaster Rovers Belles will approach the second half of the season with a different mindset, according to head coach Zoey Shaw.

Belles lost 2-1 at home to Stoke City on Sunday but, despite sitting second bottom in the table, are showing signs of getting to grips with life in Northern Premier Division of the FA Women's National League.

Afterwards Shaw revealed a new approach.

'We spent the first half of the season worrying about what the other team is going to do and how to stop them,' she told Belles' official website.

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'This second half of the season, the message is '˜no it's not that, it's what we're going to do and how we're going to play ourselves'.'

Belles lost their entire senior squad last year after the club withdrew from the FA Women's Championship and dropped into the third tier for financial reasons '“ meaning the club's junior players had to step up.

They suffered a 9-0 defeat to Blackburn, 5-0 loss at Stoke and 6-1 reverse at Huddersfield Town during the opening weeks of the season.

But two of their three league victories this season have came in the last four games. 

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'I think the girls are now starting to think for themselves on the pitch,' said Shaw.

Reflecting on Sunday's narrow defeat, which Belles ended with ten players, she added: 'They adapted well and we gambled, moved people out of position.

'We threw everything at them in the last five or ten minutes but it just wasn't enough.'

Belles travel to Middlesbrough this weekend.