REPORT | Coventry United 3 Chichester City 1
Tough away trip as Chichester can’t keep out Ali Hall
Two first-half goals from Ali Hall denied Chichester City the points at the Butts Park Arena on Sunday, April 15.
Helen Dermody provided the perfect corners for Hall within two minutes of each other as the striker headed home the ball.
Chichester got an early goal in the second-half through Jade Widdows but it was short-lived as Hall completed her hat-trick.
There were several changes to the Chichester starting-11; Ellis Bloomfield, Jenna Fowlie, Lewry and Widdows were all selected in the squad with Poppy Shine also replacing the unavailable Sadie Blakely.
Chichester had to grow into the game on a pitch that looked like it had seen better days with Coventry playing on the same surface as three other sporting teams.
The early chances were for the home side Emma Alexandre blocking well before Bloomfield and Shine were called into action a minute later.
Stephens and Widdows had two great efforts inside the 18-yard box but both were well blocked by the Coventry defence as they chucked bodies in front of the ball.
Shine made two great saves within minutes of each to deny United, the second a great palmed saved that tipped the ball over the crossbar.
United broke the deadlock on 20 minutes Hall the striker on her own in the box from Dermody’s corner allows her to head home.
Two minutes later and Hall doubles the lead with a repeat of her first goal from another Dermody corner.
Second-half started better for City as Stephens fought hard to break free of two defenders setting up Widdows who was on her own in the box.
The striker kept her calm as she found the net first time reducing the deficit within thirty seconds of the restart.
Chichester wanted to utilise Stephen’s speed again, but Coventry made a crucial tackle with the winger eyeing up the goal.
Despite the visitor’s best efforts, United found a third to restore the two-goal advantage the goal corner again from Hall.
It wasn’t a hat-trick goal the striker will know too much about as Chichester looked to clear their lines, but the ball smashed into Hall’s face and into the goal.
Past the hour mark and Chichester had a chance with Lewry and Alexandre the ball dropping right in front of goal, but neither could find the net with red shirts blocking the way.
Stephens started to find herself in more attacking positions either setting up or on the receiving end, but Chichester couldn’t find a way past the Coventry backline.
The attacking midfielder had two late efforts at goal her first was blocked out for a corner and her second grazed the crossbar.
Final whistle and Chichester despite a battling performance return to the south coast empty-handed.
Up next are five home games starting with the visit of bottom of the table Swindon Town on Sunday, April 22nd.