Blackburn 1-0 London City Lionesses – thefa.com
Walters on the spot as new Lionesses boss tastes defeat
Georgia Walters’ first-half penalty saw Blackburn Rovers claim a vital three points as they defeated London City Lionesses 1-0 at the Sir Tom Finney Stadium.
Ahead of the game, the Lionesses announced Melissa Phillips as their new head coach, following a successful spell in charge as caretaker, which included a 1-0 victory over London Bees last weekend.
But she wasn’t able to orchestrate a winning start with Walters slotting home when Saffron Jordan was felled.
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The American would have been pleased with the start her side made, with Lucy Fitzgerald and Lily Agg looking lively from the off.
The home side thought they had broken the deadlock after 20 minutes, as Jade Richards met Maria Edwards’ cross, but the flag was up to quash the celebrations.
However, ten minutes later they had the ball in the net again, but this time it counted.
Rovers captain Jordan was brought down by Harley Bennett clumsily inside the area, giving Walters the chance to open the scoring. She duly obliged, firing past Shae Yanez powerfully from 12 yards.
🤳 A quick message from @Kayleigh_Mcx and @GeorgiaWalters4 😎#Rovers 🔵⚪️ pic.twitter.com/KSfTOPyVIX
— Blackburn Rovers LFC (@RoversLadies) October 18, 2020
The visitors were unfortunate to not level the scores eight minutes into the second half, with Agg’s strike from ten yards striking the post following good work from substitute Annie Rossiter.
The same combination linked up just a few minutes later, this time Agg dragged a glorious chance wide from close range.
But that was to be as close as the Lionesses came, meaning a crucial three points for Gemma Donnelly’s side, who climb above their opponents with their second FA Women’s Championship victory of the season.
MOMENT OF THE MATCH
Saffron Jordan has plenty of experience in the FA Women’s Championship and she used it to good effect for the only goal of the game.
Holding the ball well, the captain was brought down by Harley Bennett with Walters not wasting the opportunity to convert the resulting penalty.
Blackburn manager Gemma Donnelly said: “We were under pressure for large parts of the second half, but we were super tough to break down and it’s our first clean sheet of the season and we’re so pleased.
“The game wasn’t probably the prettiest, with the best flow to it, but we dug in and showed great character. It was a very tough game but we got what we needed from it.
“I’d like us to build on this result. It’s our first points at home and we’ve managed to go above the Lionesses, which is great credit to the character within our squad.
Unlucky result at Bambers Bridge this afternoon. A lot of heart and a second half full of chances for us. #ThePride
— London City Lionesses (@LC_Lionesses) October 18, 2020
“We’re aiming to build on this now, but the players have a week’s rest with the international break, but we want to come back and be ready to progress even more in training and our next match.”
Blackburn Rovers (4-4-2): Alex Brooks; Ellie Fletcher, Kayleigh McDonald, Jade Richards, Chelsey Jukes; Elise Hughes, Natasha Fenton, Emma Doyle, Maria Edwards; Georgia Walters, Saffron Jordan
Substitutes: Ria Montgomery for Walters 55, Isobel Dean for Edwards 62
Substitutes not used: Emma Bradley, Meg Dykes, Leah Embley, Meg Boydell, Ellie Stewart
Goals: Georgia Walters 30
Bookings: Maria Edwards 45
London City Lionesses (4-4-2): Shae Yanez; Chantelle Mackie, Harley Bennett, Ylenia Priest, Grace Neville; Atlanta Primus, Hayley Nolan, Poppy Wilson, Lucy Fitzgerald; Lily Agg, Juliette Kemppi
Substitutes: Alli Murphy for Wilson 41, Freda Ayisi for Priest 46, Annie Rossiter for Fitzgerald 46, Kallie Balfour for Mackie 78
Substitutes not used: Hope Smith, Leanne Cowan, Hannah Short, Ellie Mason, Lilly Pursey
Referee: Jack Nield