Charlton 1-3 Gillingham
Report by Sue Prior
Page last updated at 6:47PM BST, Sunday, 06 April 2014
The Addicks six match unbeaten run was ended by a Gillingham side who battled harder & wanted it more on the day.
Manager Stuart Weston was forced to make one change for the game with Grace Coombs, who had been outstanding at the heart of the defence in the two pervious games, being ruled out with an ankle injury picked up in training. Rosie Paye & Katie Hardaker were brought into the starting eleven which showed a slight change to the normal formation.
On a hard bumpy and somewhat grassless Chatham Town pitch the Addicks were slow to settle and lost possession in the 1st minute from which Fliss Gibbons hit the crossbar and the ball was scrambled to safety.
Jade Keogh was then not picked up and pulled the ball back from the left wing to Gibbons who curled her shot wide.
Charlton then hit back and forced a couple of corners before a long range effort from Kit Graham was parried away by the Gillingham keeper.
On 20 minutes after some clearly off-side build up play Gillingham took the lead when Charlotte Gurr fired home from 12 yards leaving keeper Megen Lynch with little chance.
Five minutes later the Addicks were again guilty of not tracking their player as Jade Keogh pulled the ball back from the left flank for Fliss Gibbons to have time to look up and send her effort just inside the far post.
Charlton then pressed forward and a Kit Graham shot flew wide before the same player forced Gillingham keeper Faye Baker to save.
Just before the break Gillingham increased their lead from a long range free-kick from Keogh which somehow found it`s way through the Addicks defence.
Early in the second half a dangerous Gillingham cross flew across the face of the Charlton goal with nobody able to connect.
Charlton then forced a corner from which Graham headed narrowly over.
Manager Weston introduced all 3 substitutes early in the second-half and this paid off after 71 minutes as a free-kick from Alice Singyard was volleyed home by Graham.
A great run by Sam Pittuck then set up Graham who saw her low drive fly narrowly wide.
Pittuck then came even closer as she chased a long ball and fended off a defender only to see her shot go inches wide of the upright.
Substitute Kylie Manktelow fired a speculative long range effort over the goal in the games closing moments.
Charlton: Lynch, Southgate, Paye, Flack, Simmons (Singyard 66mins), Clifford (Hyland 51mins), Tye, Hardaker (Kylie Manktelow 60mins), Harrison, Graham, Pittuck
Subs not used: Houlihan & Ibrahim