FA Women’s Premier League (Southern Section)
Team: Cheadle, Read, Fogarty, Nicholson, Denny (Wilson), Whitter (Albert), Rackham, Puddefoot, Layton, May (Richardson), Maggs
Sub Not Used: Caldwell
I met up with Clive Kingham at Hayes & Harlingon Station last Sunday for my first visit to Honeycroft in West Drayton, the home of Uxbridge FC.
Admission was just ¬£2.00, which also included a matchday programme. Martino Chevannes was away in Asia with ‘QPR in the Community’ so Miguel De Souza took charge along with Tony Smith
The first chance fell very early to the R’s when the ball was played in, by I think Emma Whitter, from the right, across the 6-yard box but it just evaded Danielle Puddefoot.
The visitors created a very good opportunity when the ball was played from midfield between two Rangers defenders but the West Ham No.9 shot straight at a well-placed Sophie Cheadle.
The Rangers took the lead after 16 minutes when Puddefoot struck home from the centre of the box after being fed from the bye-line by Whitter.
Sophie Cheadle forced a corner when she denied West Ham with a superb one-handed save. The ball was then floated in from the right, the Rangers defenders hesitated and a good chance was missed from close range.
An over-the-top ball was played into Emma Whitter and her shot on the half-volley fizzed just wide. She was one player who caught my eye as she manoeuvred intermittently between central and right-wing positions.
A powerful 25-yard shot from the visitors ended up just wide of the top corner.
Once again prior to kick-off, the QPR players formed up for a group hug followed by a shout of ‘Rangers’ in unison and then it was high-fives all round.
Ron Hill and Clive were telling me about the Rangers top scorer Jo Wilson who was about to make her comeback following injury. She started the second-half at the expense of Juliette Denny.
West Ham had their fair share of the play after the break but it was the R’s who scored the next goal ten minutes after the restart when Sophie Fogarty’s long audacious punt found the top corner.
Around the hour mark, the visitors pulled a goal back following a free kick after Puddefoot had been booked. The ball was looped towards the box and it ended up in the net courtesy of Romina Pinna, with the Rangers keeper and defenders remaining static.
A West Ham player was booked after fouling Elly Maggs and Natalie Richardson replaced Lauren May. The final change was made eight minutes later with the introduction of Cherrelle Albert at the expense of the impressive Emma Whitter.
QPR sealed the points in the 83rd minute when a superb cross from Richardson found the head of leading scorer Jo Wilson with the West Ham custodian backpedalling in vain. It was Jo Wilson’s 7th goal of the season.
This was a much-needed win for the R’s and narrowed the gap with the team placed immediately above them, West Ham.