WOMEN’S TEAM | Charlton beat Lewes to continue strong start to Championship season

The Charlton women’s team continued their impressive start to life in the FA Women’s Championship by recording an emphatic 4-1 victory against Lewes at The Oakwood on Sunday afternoon.

The visitors arrived at The Oakwood defending a 100 per cent record, but saw that dashed by a rampant Charlton.

The Addicks began the game impressively and never really let up during the 90 minutes. Just two minutes in, Kit Graham’s speculative effort from distance flew narrowly over the bar.

It only took nine minutes for the hosts to break the deadlock. Graham sent in an inviting cross to Gemma Bryan who mis-hit her effort but Charley Clifford came charging into the box to slam home the opening goal.

The Addicks continued to dominate play with excellent one-touch passing. One such move from a Charlton attack found Clifford on the edge of the box but her shot was just too high.

Katie Startup was called into action for the first time in the 16th minute when Samantha Quayle’s powerful effort found her gloves and the 19-year-old did superbly to keep hold of the ball.

Charlton almost doubled their lead just before the half hour mark when Amber Stobbs’ lovely cross found Graham who out-muscled two Lewes defenders to head at goal, but Lewes keeper Nina Wilson was in a good position to save.

Startup was called into action again shortly after the restart, as she terrifically parried away a point-blank, powerful header after a Lewes corner.

The Addicks continued to press, with Clifford sending a fantastic over-the-top ball to Graham whose effort rocketed into the side netting.

Charlton doubled their lead with half an hour remaining when Graham cut the ball back to Gurr who slotted into the back of the net to make it 2-0.

Lily Agg was brought into the fold seven minutes later and made her presence felt immediately. The attacker laid the ball off for Graham who sprinted past the Lewes defence, but her shot was well-saved by Wilson.

A minute later Charlton had a goal disallowed. Stobbs yet again sent in a lovely cross to Graham who flicked the ball to Elizabeta Ejupi who headed home from close range, but the forward was deemed to be offside by the officials.

Against the run of play, Lewes won a penalty after Startup made a superb save to tip Quayle`s shot onto the bar. Stobbs was penalised for tripping Bergin, who was following up. The Northern Ireland player, a former Addick, converted the resulting spot-kick.

But Charlton restored their two-goal advantage just second later, with Lily Agg netting her first goal for the club. Stobbs laid the ball off for Agg who calmly slotted in to make it 3-1 to the Addicks.

Three minutes later Charlton rounded off their win, with a well deserved goal from Graham whose powerful strike found the back of the net.

Sunday’s match was dedicated to Lyle Taylor’s Go Pink campaign, as the Charlton Athletic forward dyed his hair pink to raise awareness for breast cancer awareness month in October.

Charlton next travel to face top of the table Manchester United on October 14th. The Addicks currently sit fourth in the FA Women’s Championship on seven points. They are three points behind the Red Devils with a game in hand.

Charlton: Startup, Kerr, Ritchie, Coombs (c), Clifford (Agg, 67), Bryan (Ejupi, 64), Gurr, Stobbs, Graham, Nicol (Maple, 82), Churchill

Sub (not used): Griffin

Goals: Clifford (9), Gurr (60), Agg (79), Graham (86)

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