Pompey Ladies denied as Charlton hit back

Sadie Blakely. Picture: Mick Young
Sadie Blakely. Picture: Mick Young
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Sol Campbell on his return to Fratton Park in December. Picture: Joe Pepler

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Pompey Ladies had to settle for a 1-1 draw at Charlton after they were denied by a late equaliser.

Lucy Quinn’s stunning opener in the first half had put the Blues in charge.

But the London hosts fought back strongly and eventually crafted an 86th-minute leveller.

That ensured the spoils were shared between two of the current top four in the FA Women’s Premier League southern division.

The result was a positive one for joint Blues boss Perry Northeast, though.

He felt his team were far from at their best, so was encouraged they managed to dig in to take a point.

Northeast said: ‘The players came off the pitch a bit dejected after the game.

‘Our passing success rate wasn’t really there.

‘We gave the ball away too cheaply.

‘But Charlton are a good team – with big, strong, quick players.

‘It’s good for us to know that on a bad day we can still get a fairly positive result.

‘A 1-1 draw away from home against a team who had won five in a row in the league is positive.

‘I’m happy with the result but we know the performance could have been better.’

An impressive opening to the game from the Blues was rewarded with Quinn’s spectacular strike.

‘We dominated the early exchanges,’ said Northeast.

‘I was really, really happy to see the way we passed the ball in the first 20 minutes.

‘Lucy scored a fabulous goal.

‘Gemma Hillier passed the ball back and it was a great finish into the top left-hand corner.’

The Blues suffered a disruption 10 minutes after taking the lead.

Quinn took a bad knock on her ankle and had to be replaced.

She was down for five minutes receiving treatment but could not continue.

Charlton gathered some momentum as Pompey had battled on with 10 players as they waited to find out if Quinn was able to stay on.

In the second half, the Blues had to dig deep to ensure they left with a point.

It was credit to Pompey keeper Sadie Blakely who made some fine saves.

‘Maybe our goal kicked Charlton into a gear a bit,’ said Northeast.

‘They did come back strongly.

‘We drew 1-1 with them before Christmas as well.

‘The injury to Lucy knocked us back a bit. It threw our shape.

‘We played with only 10 for five minutes and then had to re-adjust.

‘That 10-minute spell allowed them to get back into the game.

‘Sadie was on form. She made some fantastic point-blank saves.

‘We could have been 2-1 down. She made three or four stops before they finally got the equaliser.’