Five Goal Thriller On The South Coast

13th February 2017

A pulsating FA WPL game on the South Coast saw Cheltenham Town Ladies lose 3-2 to high flying Southampton Saints.

Both sides started cagely with Cheltenham playing up the slight slope and against the wind. Chances were difficult to come by. But as the teams settled down it turned into a great game of football. Saints took the lead from a corner which appeared to have been cleared, but a shot by Nicole Matthews was deflected into the Cheltenham net.

Manager Graham Fletcher then had to reshuffle his defence as Amy Leask pulled up with a hamstring injury. Suze Berry was brought on to play right midfield, Naomi Purvis switched to centre back from the left with Jade Wiltshire moving from right midfield to fill that slot.

As the game progressed, Cheltenham got stronger, and it was no surprise when they equalised. Libbie Herbert made a bursting midfield run and after a cross from wide left the ball fell kindly for Suze Berry, to score with a crisp right foot shot from the edge of the area.

Both sides continued to play good football, and slightly against the run of play, Saints’ playmaker Rebecca Bath got a run on the Cheltenham defence to score with a spectacular 30 yard shot.

Half time 2-1 to the home side.

The second half started with Cheltenham on the front foot, and they equalised in the 55th minute, as Ella Hitchcox cooly finished to score her 8th goal of the season. Both sides continued to play good passing football, and the game looked to heading for a draw, however, as Cheltenham pushed forward, the ball broke loose, and Southampton, on the counter attack, and the excellent Bath, finished from just inside the box.

Cheltenham pushed forward, looking for the equaliser, and the Southampton goalkeeper made a couple of good saves but despite producing another excellent performance, the Robins Ladies went down 3-2.


D2 Interactive