Charlton 2-0 Watford
Report by David Brenchley
Page last updated at 8:14PM BST, Sunday, 09 October 2011
Two superb goals helped the Charlton Women’s team to three points against basement club Watford at Bayliss Avenue on Sunday.
A well-worked Gemma Bryan strike and a long-range screamer from Kristina Manktelow secured the win for the Addicks, making sure they bounced back after a defeat to Leeds two weeks ago.
The hosts started the game with intent as Bryan ran at the Hornets’ defence straight from kick off, winning a free kick that Emma Beckett slammed straight into the wall.
Bryan then came close on the quarter of an hour mark as she received the ball from Fliss Gibbons and saw her first time effort fly just over the crossbar.
Winger Jenny Newman then hit the outside of the post with a mis-hit cross before Charlton took the lead on 26 minutes thanks to a slick team move.
Charley Clifford picked the ball up in the middle of the pitch, played the ball into skipper Kim Dixson who knocked the ball to Bryan who took a couple of touches to drive towards goal and coolly slotted past Lauren Davey.
Paige Logie then curled the ball wide with the visitors’ first real half chance before Lois Roche struck the upright from range with Megen Lynch stranded.
On 44 minutes, the second piece of brilliance from the Addicks saw Manktelow pick the ball up 30 yards out, take a couple of touches, look up and unleash an unstoppable shot that flew over Davey.
Sarah Wiltshire should have pulled a goal back before the interval but, with makeshift centre-half and PHSC plc Player of the Match Harley Bennett pressuring, could only shoot wide of goal.
Coming into the second half with a comfortable lead, Charlton should have pushed on but it was Watford who seized the initiative.
Lynch had to be alert twice early on to stretch and tip Wiltshire and Jo Wilson efforts around the post for corner kicks.
Charlton improved into the final quarter of an hour, with Manktelow counter attacking and putting a shot straight at the keeper and Gemma firing at Davey from range.
Gibbons then shot over late on and Wlitshire shot wide after cutting in from the right but the Addicks held on for the victory.
Technical Director Paul Mortimer was satisfied with the victory, saying: “It is good to win but I think the decisions we made whilst in possession made the game tough for us.
“We will play against better teams than that this year and we really have to sharpen up on some of our play. Some of our play is really good and the girls played really well in spells.
“The problem was, when it was evident we were on top - that is when we should have upped the tempo but we slowed down to the level they played at and made it easier for them.
“I can’t complain, though. The girls played well, did what they had to do but I would love for them not to make it so tough for themselves.”
On goalscorer Manktelow, he said: “Kristina still has a hell of a lot to learn because there were too many spells where, defensively, she wasn’t at the races but she showed you what she can do. She has that in her all day long.”
“She has to realise, though, that there is a game to play when we haven’t got the ball and, too often, that is where her game lets her down but she is more than capable of producing performance and goals like that game after game.”
Charlton: Lynch, Boyer, Alden, Butler, Bennett, Clifford (Manktelow 38), Beckett, Dixson, Newman (Chandler 88), Gibbons, Bryan. Subs (not used): Ejupi.