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Lewes FC Women 1-0 London City Lionesses: Lessons learned on the road

Credit: James Boyes

The latest trip to The Dripping Pan resulted in a hard fought defeat for the Lionesses, as Lewes FC Women ran out 1-0 winners.

Things started brightly for London City as Karin Muya weaved her way through the Lewes backline to try and make something happen, but City could only find the post.

However just four minutes into the game, the Lionesses found themselves behind, after Lewes’ Ini Umotong was able to pick up the loose ball, after Paula Howelles shot hit the post, to beat Shae Yanez.

For manager Mellissa Phillips, the early goal simply provides another opportunity for the squad to learn and improve.

“It's the second match in a row that we've conceded in the first five minutes and it’s something that we'll have to learn about ourselves and make adjustments with how we prepare.”

“If you switch off from a phase of play, then it’s always going to happen,” remarked Harley Bennett, “But I think we had enough time to come back from it, but they made it difficult.”

After the goal, Lewes continued to press high up the pitch, attempting to block City’s back line playing out to the midfield.

Nevertheless, City were able to create chances with Rianna Jarrett beating two of Lewes defenders, only to find herself crowded in the box.

The same fate also met Mollie Rouse and Amy Rodgers, who’s long range efforts’ just after the half-hour mark sailed just over the crossbar.

Despite the stubborn nature of the Lewes backline, City did not relent in the first half, continuing to cause them problems, especially in the final five minutes before the break.

This period also saw Yanez pull off her first truly spectacular save of the match, as she was able to react quick enough to tip Izzy Dalton's freekick onto the crossbar.

Credit: James Boyes

The second half saw the Lionesses come out of the blocks with a point to prove, with substitute full back Kenni Thompson making an immediate impact, setting up the SETL player of the match, Atlanta Primus, for a close-ranged effort 50 minutes in.

Jarrett also continued to be a threat up until her substitution in the 70th minute, with her final kick of the game, a shot just outside the opposition's 12-yard box, just narrowly over the bar.

However, the second half was not without its controversy. With 10 minutes left of normal time, Lewes keeper Tatiana Saunders shoved Annie Rossiter in the box. As the keeper had the ball, an indirect freekick was awarded, right in the six-yard box.

Consequently, Lewes were able to have the majority of their outfield players join the keeper in the goal mouth. As such, the Lionesses shot simply met one of their heads, and spun out of play.

The Lionesses kept up the pressure however, winning a free kick on the edge of the box, which, unfortunately, no City player could make contact with.

The final act of heroics in the game belonged to Yanez, as yet again she was able to get down low and stop Lewes doubling their lead in extra time.

Credit: James Boyes

Despite the disappointing result, Phillips was still able to see the wider context of the weekend.

“We've had a strong start to the season as you can see. Looking at the results today, everyone's dropped a match or not picked up maximum points, so it's going to be an incredibly difficult league to play in, and every match will be just as important as we always talk about.”

Heading into the international break, Bennett was able to take stock and reflect on the impact of the defeat.

“Obviously, we've had a good start and it is a bit of a kick in the teeth to come away with a loss, but I think it's just got to fuel us onto the next game, for us to start sharp after the international break.”

London City Lionesses: Yanez (GK), Girasoli, Rodgers, Jarrett (Nunn 70’), Agg, Napier, Rouse (Rossiter 76’), Bennett, Muya (Thompson 45’), Fitzgerald, Primus

Subs not used: Mehmet, Fronc, Gray

London City’s next home game is against Coventry United on Sunday the 26th of September. Click here to get your tickets now!

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