Mishra reflects on Lewes defeat
Report by David Brenchley
Page last updated at 10:55AM BST, Thursday, 23 August 2018
Riteesh Mishra bemoaned a poor second half performance after watching his Charlton women’s team fall to a 5-0 loss against Lewes in the FA Women’s Continental Cup on Sunday, but saw enough positives in the first half performance to give him confidence.
The women’s team made a poor start to the 2018/19 season, going three goals down by half time before conceding two further goals to the Sussex side.
However, the Addicks played some excellent football in the opening period, with Elizabeta Ejupi heading against the crossbar and Lewes keeper Faye Baker having to be at her best to tip an Ellie Bailes long-range effort round the post. Ejupi and Charlotte Gurr also saw efforts miss the target by a matter of milimetres.
Despite that, some clinical finishing combined with a penalty meant the hosts ran out convincing winners, leaving Mishra to muse on “a game of two halves”.
“That second half performance was up there with the worst I’ve seen in my time in this role,” Mishra said. “The last 30 minutes was hard for me to take and hard for me and the travelling Charlton fans to watch and I have to apologise to them.
“I don’t know if they’ve stepped up a level or if we’ve dropped on that performance. It’s a bit of a reality check for us. Credit to Lewes. They took their chances and we didn’t.”
But, while he admits “there’s no hiding the fact that we’ve come here and lost 5-0”, the team is very much “a work in progress”. Prolific strikers Kit Graham and Gemma Bryan started on the bench, while new signings Lily Agg, Amber Stobbs and Amelia Ritchie were not fit enough for the squad.
But Mishra was pleased with the first half, explaining his side “created a lot of good moments without three of our key forward players”.
“When we are patient with the football and make the right decisions, we’ve got players that can hurt a lot of teams,” he added.
“I was pleased with how Mel [Espinosa] performed, and Liz did a good job as number nine. We created decent moments with them, but they were not playing in their natural positions. We’ve got a lot of bodies to come back in, a lot of new faces.”
Turning his attention to this weekend, Mishra is excited about the prospect of the first home game of the season , a local derby against Millwall Lionesses at new home The Oakwood, Crayford.
“This will hurt for a while, but all we can do is get back to training on Tuesday and work on what went wrong.
“When Sunday comes around, we’ll all be excited for a London derby. It’s been a long time since we’ve played Millwall in a competitive game. They have lost a lot of players and maybe won’t be as strong as they were last season, so it’s a great opportunity for us to go and win the game.”
Tickets for the Millwall match will be available on the door at The Oakwood (postcode: DA1 4DN), priced £6 for adults and £2 for concessions. The game kicks off at 2pm.