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REPORT | Horray for Helen as Chi enter 2019 with home win

1 week ago By Hayley Newman

Chichester City fought back to win 2-1 against Plymouth Argyle

A 2-1 win in the first game of 2019 against Plymouth Argyle saw Chi return to the summit of the FA Women's National League Southern Division thanks to a Helen Ogle brace.

Plymouth struck first against the run of play, Rebecca Danbridge turning home but Chi equalised before the break as Ogle side-footed in a low cross.

The hosts grew into the game and Ogle netted for a second-time a 30-yard free-kick dipping up the crossbar.

Aaron Smith fielded a strong team top goalscorers Molly Clark and Cherelle Khassal starting while there was the return to the first team of Ogle.

Chi controlled from the off and had three opportunities to take the lead.

Khassal linked up with Simmonds where the midfielder played the Irish international through on goal where she took the ball round the goalkeeper, Lynsey Rogers before a defender blocked the shot.

Within minutes Khassal was played through one-on-one with Rogers where the attacker attempted a lob but the keeper blocked with her face.

Then it was M.Clark who tested Rogers with a deep free-kick that was palmed away for the top corner of the goal.

While Chi couldn't convert, the visitors did with their first chance at goal.

The Pilgrims' new signing Leah Buridge's ball was picked out by Amber Pollock to race onto and into the box where she pulled back to the awaiting Danbridge who slotted into the net.

A quick move that turned the game as Argyle enjoyed more of the ball and had two attempts to double their lead.

Helen Bleazard smashes the crossbar as she beat Dolbear while Danbridge cleared the goalmouth with her rebounded effort.

There were a plethora of half chances for both sides including Zoe Cunningham who was denied by Lauren Cheshire.

10 minutes before the break Chi were level.

Breaking down the right wing Khassal drove past the full-back where she sent a low cross perfectly for Ogle to side-foot into the goal.

Ogle and Sara Tubby had a few half chances before half-time to put Chi ahead the best was for the young striker who controlled well before shooting twice, her first strike blocked and her second was claimed by Rogers.

The second-half saw Chi start stronger in search of a second goal, Khassal was caught offside before she put to much power on a ball into the box for Tubby.

Khassal was quick to break into the Plymouth area but her shot was blocked before Sharna Capel-Watson's redelivery found the keeper.

Chances came either end, Cheshire fended of Cunningham to cross for Khassal but her shot was saved again by Rogers while Helen Bleazard was stopped in her tracks with a strong tackle by Tiffany Taylor.

The game was with Chi and Ogle went close in the 65th minute as the defender put the ball into her feet and she fired it back at goal hitting the crossbar with Rogers well off her line.

Few minutes later Chi were awarded a free-kick 10-yards outside the area which Ogle claimed with no Hollie Wride or M.Clark on the pitch at this point.

Calm and collective, the ball soared over the mass of bodies on the edge of the area and dipped under the bar as Ogle but Chi in front.

The game's intensity grew as time ticked on, Plymouth wanting an equaliser and Chi looking to but the match to bed.

Arygle had a couple of free-kicks in a row which Chi deal with and Cunningham put the second well over the goal.

Tammy Waine swept the ball away from the feet of the visitors top scorer, Bleazard, as the game entered the final ten minutes of normal time.

Jade Widdows had come on for Khassal and looked lively from the off, however, her and fellow substitute Tash Stephens couldn't break down an organised Argyle backline.

Despite nine minutes of injury-time - due to treatment needed for M.Clark and Dolbear - Chi held off any form of attack by Plymouth with relief coming at the final whistle.

Victory in the first game of 2019 and the first double victory in the league put Chi back to the top of the Southern Premier, although Coventry United have two games in hand.

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Up next Chichester City host Coventry United in the FA Women's National League Cup third round.

Updated 07:23 - 7 Jan 2019 by Hayley Newman

Where next?

Get the low down on Jade Widdows in Coventry United programme Chi's number 7 features in this Sunday's programme alongside the usual features.
As Chi return for 2019 the programme takes a look back at a great 2018 A review of some great moments in 2018, the manager's thoughts and more

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