Lenna Gunning-Williams on Ipswich loan: “It was a very positive season” | OneFootball

Lenna Gunning-Williams on Ipswich loan: “It was a very positive season” | OneFootball

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·25 May 2024

Lenna Gunning-Williams on Ipswich loan: “It was a very positive season”

Article image:Lenna Gunning-Williams on Ipswich loan: “It was a very positive season”

Lenna Gunning-Williams reflected on a hugely positive loan spell at FA Women’s National League Southern Premier Division side Ipswich Town during the 2023/24 campaign.

The young forward joined the East Anglian club at the beginning of the season and went onto feature in 26 games – 21 in the FA Women’s National League – and finished as the club’s second highest goalscorer with 14 goals in all competitions – only Natasha Thomas scored more (25).

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Her goal involvements, where she also registered six assists, helped the Tractor Girls finish fourth in the table and, following the conclusion of their league campaign, we caught up with Lenna to discuss her first season at senior level and how it has developed her as a player.

“It was a very positive season,” she told us. “I think, it came at the right time, with the right club and I’m really happy with how I developed as a player, the time I had with Ipswich was really lovely.

“Just being how to deal with the senior environment and understanding the importance of tactics, not everything being about the physicality of being an athlete, but you really have to understand the game plan to succeed,” as she explained the learning experiences throughout the season.

“At the start of the season, I didn’t really understand tactics much and I wasn’t taking on information well. However, I feel now, I’m very good taking on what I’m being told and executing it.”

Discussing her impressive goal return from the season, she added: “I wished I had hit the 15-goal mark, I got quite a few assists as well, maybe five or six, so I’m quite happy with my goal contributions across the season and it’s just about building my confidence at this level.

“If it wasn’t for the loan, I would feel a lot less confident going into the WSL as I do now, but I feel I’m slowly getting there, I wouldn’t say I’m there now, but, I think, I’m on the right track.”

Under the terms of loan throughout the campaign, Lenna continued to train with us on certain days of the week alongside her training and matchday commitments with Ipswich, and the 19-year-old says it was important to remain in and around the squad, learning from experienced forwards like Bethany England and Martha Thomas.

“Being around both has been important, I want to be in Robert’s [Vilahamn] eye-line as much as possible and I want to show them that my loan spell worked, so having the balance of playing senior minutes in tier three while training with the first team was perfect,” she added.

“On and off the pitch, I’m constantly asking them [Bethany and Martha] questions and just trying to chip at their ears. At the end of the day, they are players who I look up to and who I want to be, so it’s good to get tips from experienced individuals like them.”

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