Charlton 1-2 Lewes
Report by David Brenchley
Page last updated at 9:50AM BST, Sunday, 01 September 2013
The Charlton women’s team slipped to a 2-1 defeat to Lewes Ladies at The Dripping Pan on Sunday, despite taking a second-half lead.
In a similar vein to last weekend, the two teams went into the interval level but, this time, it was the Addicks who broke the deadlock thanks to a towering Kit Graham header.
However, Chelsea loanee Naomi Cole equalised, before seeing her penalty saved, and Catherine O’Hagan lobbed Megen Lynch five minutes from time to secure the three points for the Sussex side.
The first period was pretty even, with both sides having chances to open the scoring – the first opportunity fell to the hosts’ Andreia Veiga but she shot wide.
Charlton’s first opening came after some excellent football with Kylie Manktelow playing the returning Jenny Newman to the byline. Newman’s pull back was turned goalwards by Gemma Shepherd but keeper Michelle Beazley turned it round the near post.
Kim Dixson also made Beazley work but the skipper’s 30-yard drive was easy enough to save.
At the other end, Stef Simmons’ loose pass in defence was picked up by Lewes and fed out to the left where Cole closed on the goal but Lynch came out, narrowed the angle and saw the effort wide.
This end-to-end football continued as Newman outpaced her marker to latch onto Graham’s through ball but Katie McIntyre got in an excellent last-ditch tackle and Emma Harrison’s follow up was saved by Beazley.
There was time for one more chance each late in the half; Cole gain shot wide and Newman pulled a cross back for Shepherd but the striker’s shot was saved low.
The Addicks’ only dominant spell of the game was the first 15 minutes of the second period, as they sought to stamp their authority on the match.
Early on, Shepherd nicked the ball off a dallying defender and closed in on goal but, when you would have backed her to open her account for the season, Beazley got a hand on it to palm it wide.
Just nine minutes into the half, though, the deadlock was broken by the flying visitors, and it was last season’s leading goal scorer Shepherd who turned provider.
Picking the ball up with the full back pressuring her on the right, the attacker swung over a dangerous cross and Graham charged into the six yard box and in between two defenders before leaping to power home a header.
However, the Addicks failed to capitalise on their strike, instead they gifted chance upon chance to Lewes and were fortunate the leveller did not come sooner than it did.
From a Charlton goal kick, Lynch threw the ball to Harley Bennett, who had players around her and could only pass into Cole’s path but the defender-turned-winger’s shot thumped against the woodwork.
Five minutes after that she made amends, taking advantage of a hesitant Charlton defence and midfield to collect the ball on the left and curl an equaliser into the far corner.
Now it was the home side’s turn to come out flying and Cole won a penalty after she went tumbling from a Lynch challenge. The resulting spot kick was poor, though, and Lynch did well to save and hold on to the ball.
The outcome could have been different when, with ten minutes remaining, Shepherd’s ball found Manktelow on the penalty spot but the midfielder could only manage to poke it agonisingly wide.
With the game running out of time, the three points were settled when O’Hagan took advantage of more hesitant defending by lobbing the ball over Lynch and into an empty net.
The final action came when an injury time Dixson free kick looked to be heading onto Graham’s head but was well cleared for a corner by a Lewes defender.
Charlton: Lynch, Flack, Simmons, Paye, Bennett, Dixson, Graham, Kylie Manktelow, Newman (Kristina Manktelow 76), Harrison (Rogers 80), Shepherd. Subs (not used): Duffy, Hardaker, Pittuck.