Ladies lose 2-1 to Lewes

The Ladies slipped to a 2-1 loss at home to Lewes
West Ham United Ladies suffered a disappointing 2-1 defeat against Lewes Ladies at Rush Green on Sunday 19 April. 

After going into the weekend’s game off the back of picking up seven points from three games in a grueling week, the Hammers looked likely to extend their unbeaten run to four games when Emma Sherwood fired in an excellent half volley from 30 yards.

However, in the second half, goals from Clare Trafford and Cherelle Khassal secured the three points, turning the game on it’s head.

Ladies manager Julian Dicks was forced into a couple of changes ahead of the visit of Lewes to Rush Green. Left back Katie Bottom failed a pre-match fitness test and was replaced by Vicky King, while April Bowers continued illness saw her miss out with Jade Smith stepping into the starting eleven. 

During the opening 20 minutes, the Hammers looked unccharacteristically sluggish as they gifted possession to Lewes on several occasions, although the visitors failed to punish the Hammers.

Against the run of play, West Ham pushed themselves ahead when Sherwood unleashed a long range strike that caught Lewes’ keeper Allison Cowling out and ended up in the back of the net.

The goal gave the hosts confidence and they ended the half strongly, looking more confident in possession as they fought off any response by Lewes.

However, it didn’t take long into the second half for the equaliser to come as the hosts failed to clear their lines and Trafford was well placed in the penalty area to divert a long range strike into the corner of the net.

That goal rattled Dicks’ side and Lewes were unlucky not to go further ahead when the referee waved away appeals for a penalty when Danica Revell tripped up a visiting striker in the penalty area.

With 72 minutes on the clock, captain Stacey Little made an uncharacteristic mistake at the back, allowing talented forward Khassal to burst through and finish low past Hammers keeper Nikki Duncan.

The hosts rallied and almost got back into the game, but neither Vicky Kinsman nor Adele Sale could convert their chances.

West Ham now head into their final two FA Women’s Premier League South matches this season with 34 points from 20 games this season. 

They host Brighton & Hove Albion at Rush Green in their next fixture on Sunday 26 April at 2pm, before ending their season away to Portsmouth a fortnight later.

Between their final two league fixtures, they also have a London FA Capital Women’s Cup Final against Charlton Athletic at Harrow Borough FC on Wednesday 6 May. Kick-off in the final is at 7:30pm.

Ladies: Duncan, King, Revell, Little (c), Stimson (Xidhas), Smith, Clifton (Sale), Sherwood, Mellors, Kinsman, Blanchflower. 
Subs not used: Bottom.