REPORT: Chichester City 2 Luton Town 0
Hatter’s dreams sunk by late Chichester super show
Two goals in the final five minutes fired Chichester City into the Fourth Round of the SSE Women’s FA Cup.
It was a hard graft for the home side on a difficult weather worn surface but the Green Army had plenty of chances to seal the victory.
The goals came late, Alex Collighan scoring in the 86th minute tapping home past the keeper and a chipped effort from Cherelle Khassal see’s Chichester into the draw.
Plenty of hard work was put in over the preceding twenty-four hours enabled the match to pass an early pitch inspection and the teams were set to endure a very cold afternoon accompanied by a strong winter wind.
Chichester started brightly with the strike duo of Khassal and Jade Widdows showing good pace to threaten the Hatters back line.
The visitors stood their ground and from a quick break, it was Chichester who almost conceded early had it not been for an alert Emma Alexandre who was in the right place to clear.
Luton then had a good period of play with numerous forays into the Chichester half but the back line for the hosts handled the onslaught well with Tiffany Taylor particularly strong in the tackle.
Chichester settled again with more chances beginning to come.
Widdows went close with the keeper, Kezia Hassall, doing brilliantly to deny her and then blocked Jenna Fowlie on the follow-up.
Rebecca Barron had a pop from distance with a looping effort but it lacked the power to trouble Hassall and Luton were able to breathe again.
Alexandre’s headed effort was well blocked from a corner and Chloe Tucker’s strike was just wide of the mark.
The chances kept on coming for the hosts; Widdows missed the best chance of the first-half in a one-on-one situation that saw Hassall make a great save.
Early in the second period and Chichester were almost the beneficiaries of a goalkeeping howler.
Khassal was set up on the edge of the area and let fly with a stinger shot that was spilt by the Hatters keeper but she did enough to keep it clear of the goal.
In the blink of an eye, Luton almost snatching the lead against the run of play.
Stephanie Gale found space in the area and her shot hit the right-hand post and somehow rolled along the goal line, hit the left post and stayed out to the relief of the home bench.
That was the closest that the Hatters would come to causing a shock upset and in the last four minutes of the game, Chichester finally got their noses in front.
Tucker fed the ball into space for Colligham to race on to.
The young striker won the race against Hassall to get enough on the ball from a tight angle and the ball looped sweetly into the back of the net.
Two minutes later and the job was done.
Khassal pounced on a ball over the top to produce a sublime chip over Hassall to finally end the tie as a contest.
In the end, a solid 2-0 win for Chichester City in the Third Round of the FA Cup see’s the club enter the draw for the next round where a tasty draw against a Women’s Super League side is up for grabs.
- Written by Alan Price