Report by David Brenchley
Page last updated at 11:35AM UTC, Sunday, 23 September 2012
Bill Long was disappointed with the three “sloppy” goals the Charlton women’s team conceded against Leeds United last weekend but is encouraged by their goalscoring potential.
The Addicks lost 3-2 to last season’s National Division runners up despite dominating for long periods but it was the ease with which their opponents scored that was of concern for the caretaker manager.
And with no game this Sunday due to it being Charlton’s rest week in the Premier League Cup, Long is pleased he has two weeks’ worth of training sessions to put the defensive frailties right before their next league game at home to newly-promoted Portsmouth.
After the game he said: “At stages we played some lovely football. We kept the ball, we worked hard in phases but we conceded three sloppy goals.
“Other than that, generally, our performance was good. In spells we played fantastic football, we stretched Leeds and they couldn’t get the ball off us.
“Then all of a sudden we conceded a sloppy goal from a corner because we can’t defend the second phase of the corner and I think that is basic fundamental areas of defending and it’s a shame.
“It gives me food for thought for what we need to be looking at during the week in training. Fortunately we haven’t got a game next week so we have four training sessions to work on things, i.e. defending.”
Despite Charlton having conceded ten goals from their opening four league fixtures, they have netted seven, giving some hope for the remainder of the campaign.
Gemma Shepherd scored her fourth goal in as many games since her summer move from West Ham while striker Gemma Bryan is well on her way back from injury, hitting the crossbar on her first start of the season.
Elsewhere, winger Courteney Gibson has two goals from three appearances and Long hopes, with some fine tuning defensively, a win will not be long in coming.
“For me there were some real positives in there as well, he added. “We have scored last week, we have scored two good goals this week and going forward we are creating chances and doing OK.
“It’s just that getting to defend in the final third and cutting out the small errors and if we can cut those out we can start moving on and winning games.
“We are good going forward but have struggled to defend set pieces – that is the thing we have to look at first and foremost and if we can get that in our locker we will be going up the table.”