West Ham United Ladies ended a week to forget with an 8-1 defeat away to Charlton Athletic Women at Sporting Club Thamesmead on Sunday afternoon.
Earlier this week, the club confirmed that a number of first team players had left the Hammers, before Stefanie Simmons, Rosie Paye, Charley Clifford and Kit Graham all netted within the opening 25 minutes to pile on the misery for Marc Nurse’s side.
Before the break, Italian winger Romina Pinna pulled the Hammers back into it for a matter of minutes, before ex-Hammer Gemma Shepherd and Nikita Whinnett gave the hosts a 6-1 lead at the break.
A considerably stronger second half performance from the Hammers only saw them concede two further goals as Shepherd and Graham added their second goals of the game, condemning West Ham to their fifth defeat in six FA Women’s Premier League South fixtures this season.
It was all change during the week, with Nurse making six changes to his starting eleven that lost 1-0 away to local rivals C&K Basildon in the FA Women’s Premier League Cup First Round seven days earlier.
Within the opening ten minutes of the game, the Hammers already found themselves three goals behind and in need of yet another change to the squad. Simmons fired home from the edge of the box after Shepherd’s original shot was saved by Indian goalkeeper Chauhan, before Paye headed home alone at the back post from a corner and Clifford finished alone inside the penalty area. The change was needed when Chelsea Hinz, playing at the heart of the defence on her debut, picked up a knock and was replaced by former Crystal Palace midfielder Danni Ritson.
Graham then added a fourth for Charlton by heading home from close range after Development Squad defender Sillitoe struggled to deal with a chipped through ball, before Pinna’s long run and shot was deflected in to reduce the deficit.
Before the break though, Charlton extended their lead when Shepherd rounded Chauhan, cut back and curled into the far corner of the net and Whinnett picked up the ball and fired low past Chauhan.
Nurse used his second substitute at the half time break when he introduced ex-Millwall Lionesses youth player Anderson-James in place of Abela.
The Hammers battled hard in the second period and it took Charlton till the 70th minute to break their visitors down again, with Shepherd getting her second of the game by heading home Addicks skipper Kim Dixson’s corner.
The game was then wrapped up by Charlton adding an eighth in the 81st minute when Whinnett was found in an advanced, wide position and she whipped in a low cross for Graham to cooly double her goal tally for the game.
After Sunday’s defeat, West Ham remain in 11th place in the FA Women’s Premier League South and Nurse will be hoping for his luck to change when they travel to Lewes Ladies on Sunday 18t October at 2pm for their next league fixture.
Ladies: Chauhan, Bottom (c), Sillitoe, Hinz (Ritson), Wheeler, Miller (Campesi), Eagles, Abela (Anderson-James), Locke, Pinna, Edwards. Subs not used: Adeyemo.