Despite creating plenty of opportunities, Oxford United Women fell to a 1-0 defeat against Keynsham Town at Court Place Farm this afternoon.
Looking for momentum following a terrific 8-1 victory over Norwich City at Court Place Farm last week, United started the game on the front foot. Allen had the game’s first opportunity four minutes in as she received the ball in the area. With her back to goal she did well to get a shot away but couldn’t steer her effort on target. The U’s had a goal ruled out in the opening ten minutes for offside as they looked for the opener.
Carly Johns found a lot of space on the right wing throughout the opening exchanges and she did well to beat her marker and cross towards Daisy McLachlan, who was arriving at the back post, but a good defensive header meant the U’s had to bide their time in the first half.
Kayleigh Hines tried her luck on two occasions from distance: the first comfortably gathered by the Keynsham goalkeeper before the second whistled past the post as United Women looked to break the deadlock. Against the run of play however, it was Keynsham who were to take an early lead against the run of play. Paris Sercombe parried the visitors’ first effort away but United weren’t quick enough to deal with the second attempt and a Keynsham forward was allowed space to pick out the bottom corner to put Keynsham ahead.
United Women responded well though and continued pressing their opponents despite the setback. Johns went close with a volleyed attempt before Williams worked the chance of the half as she went through on goal but couldn’t keep her strike down.
A goal down at the break, the U’s had work to do. A slight change of shape as striker Georgia Timms came on for Johns at the interval almost paid off immediately after the restart. McLachlan drifted in from the right forcing the goalkeeper into a good stop before Williams drilled one towards goal from the rebound only to see her effort blocked on the line.
Sustained pressure from the U’s followed as they kept Keynsham pegged back in their own half for large spells but caught on the break Sercombe was called into action again saving well to her right to keep the U’s hopes alive.
On 70 minutes, a terrific team move ending with Sophie Baker putting the ball into the back of the net was ruled out for offside again as the all-important equaliser continued to avoid Liam Gilbert’s side.
United Women threw everything they could as the side searched for an equaliser and Emily Allen almost got the U's level in the 90th minute, forcing a terrific save from the Keynsham goalkeeper who had a fantastic afternoon for the visitors but United didn't get the breakthrough they would feel they deserved as Keynsham took all three points.
United Women next face Launton at home in the County Cup.
UNITED: Sercombe, Clifford, Lancaster, Sims, Searle (Beaver), Hines, Baker (Moore), Allen, Johns (Timms), Williams, McLachlan
Unused Subs: Watson, Kirby