Women's Report: Saints complete unbeaten pre-season

By SFC Media time Sun 08 Aug Saints vs London City Lionesses
Photo by Isabelle Field | Sophia Pharoah
Sun 08 Aug 2PM
Friendlies
Southampton
2
London City Lionesses
2
Kendall [24'] Pharoah [82']
goal
Rodgers [52'] Napier [61']
Venue: Snows Stadium | Attendance: 0

Southampton FC Women finished off their preseason positively with a 2-2 draw against visitors London City Lionesses, increasing confidence ahead of their opening National League Southern Premier fixture next Sunday.

Saints opened the scoring on 24 minutes, Lucia Kendell finding the corner with a precise finish over the head of Shae Yanez.

After the break, City responded positively and went 2-1 up courtesy of quick-fire goals from Amy Rodgers and Jamie Lee-Napier.

With eight minutes to play, the hosts showed excellent spirit to equalise, Sophia Pharoah’s superb chip ensuring the spoils were shared.

The first 15 minutes saw both teams trying to exert their presence on the game, with Southampton being made to work hard for possession.

The first chance fell to the visitors after 17 minutes, a well worked free-kick making its way back to the waiting Rodgers, whose shot from outside the area flew just wide of Kayla Rendell’s left post.

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - July 20: Phoebe Williams of Southampton during per-season friendly between Saints Women and Southampton Women Development team at The Snows Stadium on July 20, 2021 in Southampton, England. (Photo by Isabelle Field/Southampton FC via Getty Images)
Phoebe Williams in action. (Photo: Isabelle Field)

However, seven minutes later it was  who broke the deadlock, an under-hit back pass in the City defence allowing Kendell to break through and lift a delicate shot into the far corner, leaving Yanez helpless.

Eager to respond before the break, Brooke Nunn made good progress down the left side, but her eventual shot from a tight angle didn’t worry Rendell, who watched it sail over her crossbar.

Southampton almost doubled their lead moments before half-time, and in the most improbable manner, with Sievwright smashing the post directly from a corner.

Both teams opted for several changes at the break, making for a second period of football that was entirely different to the first.

Within five minutes of the restart Rendell was called into action three times for the Saints, brilliantly saving the efforts of Annie-Lee Rossiter, Riana Jaret and Napier to preserve the one goal advantage.

However, rejuvenated by the addition of fresh legged substitutes, the visitors did find the equaliser on 52 minutes, Rodgers’ driven effort from the right side of the box squirming unfortunately under the body of Rendell.

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - July 20: Laura Rafferty of Southampton during per-season friendly between Saints Women and Southampton Women Development team at The Snows Stadium on July 20, 2021 in Southampton, England. (Photo by Isabelle Field/Southampton FC via Getty Images)
Summer signing Laura Rafferty picks a pass. (Photo: Isabelle Field)

The visitors went on to add a second nine minutes later, Napier squeezing her effort past an outrushing Rendell from close range, following excellent hold-up play from fellow attacker Grace Neville.

Perhaps the unluckiest player on the pitch, Sievwright almost responded for the hosts on 73 minutes, but the midfielder's exceptional strike from more than 35 yards cannoned off the woodwork for a second time in the game.

With 10 minutes to go City looked to add a third, but Saints found their previous misfortunes repaid, as Napier’s strike was also turned away by the post.

Looking to kill the final minutes, City were keen to keep possession in their own half, but excellent Saints pressure forced another mistake within their defensive ranks, this time allowing substitute Sophia Pharoah to go through one-on-one and weight her chip perfectly over the head of Yanez and into the empty net on 82 minutes.

Looking forward, Southampton fans and players alike will be excited for next Sunday, when Spacey-Cale's side contest their first National League Southern Premier fixture at home to MK Dons.

Southampton

1
Kayla Rendell (GK)
3
Shelly Provan
replace Alisha Ware (45′)
5
Rosie Parnell
replace Rachel Panting (50′)
6
Laura Rafferty
7
Georgie Freeland
replace Sophia Pharoah (75′)
8
Phoebe Williams
9
Ella Pusey
replace Leeta Rutherford (68′)
10
Shannon Sievwright (C)
16
Caitlin Morris
17
Lucia Kendall
replace Ciara Watling (75′)
18
Milly Mott
replace Ella Morris (45′)
2
Ella Morris
11
Alisha Ware
12
Sophia Pharoah
13
Sara Luce
21
Leeta Rutherford
Ciara Watling
19
Rachel Panting

London City Lionesses

30
Shae Yanez (GK)
4
Charlotte Flemming
6
Carly Girasoli
replace Trialist (45′)
8
Amy Rodgers
11
Jamie-Lee Napier
12
Mollie Rouse
14
Harley Bennett
15
Hayley Nolan
replace Grace Neville (45′)
17
Lucy Fitzgerald
20
Atlanta Primus
28
Brooke Nunn
replace Rianna Jarret (45′)
3
Melis Mehmet
9
Rianna Jarret
12
Grace Neville
19
Wiktoria Fronc
18
Jess Gray
21
Annie-Lee Rossiter
33
Trialist
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