Cardiff defeat leaves bitter taste for Blues

Jemma Tewkesbury was denied
Jemma Tewkesbury was denied
Smoke bombs were let off during Pompey's match against Charlton today. Picture: Joe Pepler

Steward treated after smoke bombs let off following Pompey defeat

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Defeat at Cardiff left a bitter taste for Pompey Ladies manager Vanessa Raynbird.

Two goals were controversially ruled out – compounding the misery for the visitors as their hosts celebrated a 2-0 success.

Charley Wilson and Jemma Tewkesbury were both denied goals – with decisions from the officials going against the Blues.

It was a very frustrating day for Pompey, with a win needed to help them start climbing the FA Women’s Premier League national division table.

Raynbird was extremely unhappy with the decisions that cost her side.

She said: ‘We had the ball in the net but all of a sudden it was offside.

‘Charley Wilson ran through on goal and had two or three touches before the assistant referee put his flag up.

‘We were right in line and she was a yard behind the player.

‘Then Kirsty McGee slid in for a challenge on the keeper, won the ball and it has fallen to Jemma Tewkesbury to tap it into an empty net, with the keeper on the deck.

‘But then the referee has blown up for a foul on the keeper.’

Pompey in the end had to lick their wounds as two Kelly Isaac goals secured the three points for Cardiff.

Raynbird felt her side were also lacking in finishing prowess on the day.

‘We weren’t clinical enough in front of goal,’ said the Pompey boss.

‘Sometimes we rely too much on balls over the top to our quick strikers.

‘It works sometimes but on this occasion we didn’t play as much football as we would have liked.

‘We worked extremely hard and shut them down all over the park.

‘But in the second half, when they put the pressure on, we got a bit jittery and it was panic stations a bit.’

Tewkesbury should have opened the scoring in the first half when she rounded the keeper but tried to shuffle the ball onto her stronger foot and was blocked out by the covering defender.

Lucy Quinn also had a chance but needed too many touches in the box and the chance was gone.

Defender Kaylee Schumann-Edwards powered a header over the bar and it all led to a fear at the break that Pompey would end up paying the price for missed chances.

That happened on 69 minutes as centre-back Lauren Murphy was robbed and Cardiff forward Isaac raced clear to open the scoring.

It was 2-0 on 86 minutes, when the same player netted after a quick counter attack from the home team.

Pompey take on Watford at home on Sunday (2pm).

The second-placed Hertfordshire out managed only a narrow 1-0 win over bottom-club Barnet in their previous outing.

Raynbird is confident the Blues can put on a good show at Westleigh Park.

‘We deservedly beat Barnet and Watford only just beat them so it shows how close it often is between the top teams and the bottom teams in this league,’ said the Pompey boss.