Ladies’ football: City ready for big kick-off

Becky Barron was in hot form against Southampton
Becky Barron was in hot form against Southampton

Chichester City ladies continued their pre-season action by beating Southampton and Enfield.

On a sultry night at Oaklands Park, Southampton were the visitors and a large crowd swelled the park.

Chichester were not themselves in the first half and, although it was great to see the likes of Jade Woodison and Kally Ambler making their returns, chances were scarce.

The visitors took the lead when the defence lost its shape and Cassie Thorpe snuck in to plant the ball into the back of the net.

Just after the half-hour, Phillipa Holden let fly to double Southampton’s lead.

After the break, Chichester came out with a new desire and took the game to their opponents.

Then the Becky Barron show kicked into gear.

On the hour, Charelle Khassel rifled in a shot home to halve the deficit and within minutes, Emma Alexandre headed home from a Becky Barron corner to level the tie. Then the Barron show kicked into gear.

First, the diminutive midfielder let fly from almost 30 yards to put Chichester into the lead. Shortly afterwards, Baron was exquisitely set up at the back stick by Khassel and fired home with ease.

When Tash Angel diverted a cross from Baron into her own net Southampton knew the game was up. In injury time Baron nailed a deserved hat-trick with another powerful drive.

At Enfield, both teams found it tough going and one goal was enough to seal a narrow win for Chichester.

Chloe Dowdell and Shannon Albuery had good chances to open their account but the glory went to Ambler – she latched on to a neat flick through the defence by Woodison.

Once again, manager Liam Greenfield could come away from the match satisfied.

The Chi first team ended their friendlies by losing 3-1 to Gillingham – Albuery the scorer.

Chichester’s first team play their first league game this Sunday (August 21) versus Cheltenham at Oaklands Park (2pm) – all support welcome.

City’s development squad drew 1-1 in a friendly against Eastleigh, Sian Payne their scorer.

ALAN PRICE

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