Chichester City ladies returned to league action this Sunday as they travelled to Bath to play Keynsham Town ladies. Keynsham had been relegated from the level above Chichester at the end of last season so they knew it would be a tough test against a side who like themselves had only lost one game in the league all season.
The game was played on Keynsham's artificial pitch meaning that in the opening exchanges both teams were able to play crisp football without the worry about the quality of the surface. It was a frantic start to the game with neither side really seizing the initiative, Keynsham looked to exploit their pace on the right with Chichester using both wings to good effect. Chances were few and far between, mainly coming from set pieces for both teams and it was from a set piece Keynsham took the lead. Chichester gave away a foul on the edge of the area and after hitting the wall the ball fell kindly to a Keynsham player inside of the box for her to stoop low and nod the ball into the net.
Chichester took a few minutes to compose themselves before reasserting their stake on the game. They now used their width to greater effect with a lot of crosses being played into the box. The equaliser came just before half time when Widdows was played clear down the Chichester right, her cross sailed over the keeper and fell to the feet of Waine at the back post for an easy tap in. The teams went in level at the break both knowing the next goal would be crucial.
Having scored last Chichester started the half in confident mood, moving the ball nicely through midfield and trying to pick openings in the Keynsham back line. Keynsham looked dangerous on the break and had several strikes from range that the Chichester back line did well to block. At the end of one of their forays forward Challen was fouled on the edge of area, Amy found stepped up to take the free kick for Chichester, she bent her strike over the wall and dipped it just underneath the crossbar. Chichester were now in front for the first time in the game. They began to play like a team with growing confidence, moving the ball quicker when in possession and recovering doggedly out of it.
Chichester increased their lead when after some quick play forward Fowlie cut the ball inside to Found to unleashed a strike from 25 yards which again found the top corner. The third goal made Chichester comfortable but brought with it pressure as Keynsham piled forward at times playing with four strikers. Although a large amount of the play was now in the Chichester half the visiting players did well to hold the ball in the higher areas to provide Chichester time to reorganise.
As Keynsham searched for their way back into the game, Thompson in the Chichester goal stood firm pulling off two great saves to her right hand side.
The game finished and Chichester took three points with them back to Sussex. The ladies are again in league action away against Maidenhead united this Sunday. Kick off 14.00.