By Nick Ware

25th Apr, 2021 | 9:10pm

West Ham Women Expert: Hawa Cissoko was player of the match v Everton

We’re delighted to welcome Michelle Irons as our exclusive West Ham Women’s expert. Each week she’ll be giving her views on the biggest talking points at Victoria Road…

Michelle Irons was thrilled with the display of West Ham defender Hawa Cissoko during their 0-0 draw with Everton in the WSL.

It was a second goalless draw of the week for the Hammers after Tuesday’s stalemate with Aston Villa, and their fourth clean sheet on the bounce, a statistic that is sure to please manager Olli Harder.

Keeping out a side four places higher in the WSL and with a goals scored tally of 38 was no mean feat and our resident West Ham Women’s expert picked out Cissoko for special praise.

“We huffed and puffed for a win and overall, I think we deserved to get all three points,” Michelle Irons told West Ham Zone.

“We had a lot of clear chances especially in the first half with Martha Thomas putting wide an absolute gift by the Everton player [Izzy] Christiansen.

“Thomas was brilliant. Once again her link-up play with Kenza Dali was special.

“I’m also very impressed with Hawa Cissoko. She is a top defender and it’s no coincidence that since she came in, we have been cool and composed in our defensively play. She is my player of the match.”

“I think the referee was a bit overwhelmed and should have given us a penalty due to handball in the box.

“But this was never going to be easy game. Everton are a tough, hard-working side with Jill Scott controlling their play but I think we did a great job in keeping her quiet.

“We’ve got five points from a possible nine the last three WSL games and we are pushing in the right direction.”

A draw helps to eek the Irons further away from the WSL dropzone, though the gap is just two points to them and Bristol City at the bottom.

Crucially, though, we have a game in hand over the Vixens, and that could prove big in the battle to stay up.

It will require some more masterclasses from Cissoko at the back but the signs are promising with the Irons proving a tough nut to crack for any team at the moment.

In other West Ham Women news, our expert has been raving about the potential of this young Irons loanee.

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