Swindon Town Women Report

2nd March 2020

Swindon Town WFC 0

Cheltenham: Brown 36′

After the previous week’s demolition of Pucklechurch, Cheltenham Town Ladies returned to FA Women’s National League action, with a local derby proving to be a tough challenge.

Swindon started the game playing into the wind and immediately turned possession over, allowing Cheltenham a first chance within the opening few minutes. Annie Martin getting a sniff of goal but unable to find the target.

The home side came out on top in the early exchanges. The Robinesses seeing most of the ball and playing with purpose inside the Swindon half but not able to convert.

With Cheltenham sending players forward, looking to overload the Swindon defence, gaps appeared at the back and a long clearance opened the door for the away side. Sammy Hallsworth and Harriet Lambe combined at the back with two huge clearances to make sure the visitors couldn’t find a way through.

After some exchanges in midfield, Georgia Brown (pictured) presented the Swindon ‘keeper, Hull, a difficult shot. The low, zipped shot bouncing just in front of her, but she was able to smother it well.

Cheltenham would again settle down in the Swindon half, building the pressure against a tireless defence. Eventually it paid off with a series of corner kicks, as Swindon were unable to clear their lines.

The home side would eventually open the scoring on the 16th minute. With Swindon a player down with Kayleigh Hateley leaving the field for treatment, Sarah King went on a direct run down the right wing, forcing another corner.
Annie Martin’s low drive to the near post was met by Georgia Brown, who blasted past the goalkeeper at the near post.

Cheltenham would continue to push into the Swindon half after the goal, Hitchcox presented with a good chance from a diagonal ball but were unable to finish.

Swindon, spurred on by conceding, pushed forward with an attack of their own, winning a corner off of Brown after a low cross into the box was turned behind by the young midfielder.

Alice Kempski and Brown would combine at the corner to relieve the danger and allow Cheltenham to break away with numbers. The home side would force a corner but couldn’t convert.

Half Time: CTLFC 1-0 Swindon Town Women

Cheltenham restarted the game through Martin and Cheltenham went on an early attack but were forced to settle for another corner.

The visitors grew into the game, pushing Cheltenham back. Rendall being forced to play back to her goalkeeper Robyn Levett, who calmly recycled play for Cheltenham to rebuild.

Swindon would be presented a free-kick from a wide angle. The ball in dropping just short inside the box, eventually hammered away by fullback Lauren Ellis.

Cheltenham would continue to press forward, Ella Hitchcox stepping side from the left and fizzing a shot just past Hull’s left-hand post.

The Robinesses were bouyed by the introduction of Jasmine Bull from the bench. She wasn’t long in the game before rattling the crossbar with a monster of a shot from outside the box.

Bull would be involved again soon after, down the left wing but Cheltenham couldn’t find a way through, firing wide to the left of goal.

Kerry Walklett would be introduced for Cheltenham, making her debut as a replacement for Sarah King, involved heavily in the thick of it in midfield.

Swindon would go with some direct play, challenging the Cheltenham defence near the end of the half but Rendall and Hallsworth stood strong at the back for the home side.

The visitors would win a couple of corners in the dying minutes with Cheltenham’s defence denying them at both attempts.
The home side were given a chance to form a counter attack of their own, with the pace of Hitchcox causing issues but the finish on the last play of the game was lacking.

Attendance: 77

Cheltenham: R. Levett, H. Lambe, S. Hallsworth, K. Rendall, L. Ellis, G. Brown, A. Bevan, A. Kempski (Bull 67′), S. King (Walklett 80′), E. Hitchcox, A. Martin.
Subs not used: H. Galpin, E. Simpson, C. Marron


Manager Alex Cheal was happy to pick up another three points but was disappointed by his side’s ability to finish in front of goal:

“I’m delighted that we have the three points. We drew with a similar side towards the end of last season so it shows where we are now. I don’t think it was an ugly display, I just believe we were incredibly wasteful in front of goal. Swindon barely got out their half first half and we must have had double figure chances. Second half we controlled for large periods and the opposition’s direct style was always going to create chances as we approached the end of the game. I’d have taken three points at the start of the game and regardless of if we are winning games by 1 or 5, the three points is the overriding factor.

“The wind didn’t help things today but I still feel like we dealt with conditions better than our opposition. I still can’t remember a clear cut chance for them, and while we naturally got deeper as the game went on, I cant fault our performance overall except for how wasteful we were.

“Kerry [Walklett] has had to wait for game time due to matches being cancelled. She has come to us from Oxford and predominantly as a central midfielder, however she is adaptable and can play higher up as well. It was good to give her some game time after so many postponements.

“Maidenhead next week is a completely different scenario so it doesn’t affect us too much. I have always maintained that a run of games will bring out the best in this group and that’s something we have been short of. If we show our control and quality that came through in the first half next week, it is in our hands. We always tailor our week to our opposition and regardless of who we play, our end goal is to get three points.”

Cheltenham Town Ladies are on the road next week with a trip to Maidenhead United Women. Kick-off is at 2pm.

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