QPR FC Women (3) – Cambridge United Women (0)

FA Women’s National League Division One (South-East)

Team: Melling, Curr, Searle, Owen, Blodgett, Lewin, Ward-Chambers, Hill, Stanley, Akerman, Petit

The pre-match rain had turned to drizzle before brightening up.

After a fairly-even opening 15 minutes, there was nothing of note to trouble either keeper.

The U’s No.5 went down for some time requiring some treatment.

The first attempt at goal came when Kasha Petit’s lob from around 25 yards ended up just wide of the target.

Rangers took the lead after 23 minutes when Emily Hill’s low drive from the edge of the box, took a slight deflection before entering the net.

During this period, I did notice from my vantage point in the South Africa Road Stand, around fifteen pigeons in the QPR box due to a lack of action in that area!

The R’s doubled their lead around the half-hour mark following good work by Kasha Petit down the left-flank. This resulted in Grace Stanley’s knock-in after Lauren Webb had saved Courtnay Ward-Chambers’ initial effort.

Then, Kasha Petit’s low cross was met first time by Katie Akerman and the ball flashed just wide of the upright.

After 35 minutes, Alice Curr’s powerful goal-bound strike hit Ella Marden, which left the U’s defender dazed and eventually she was replaced by Ruth Fox.

Izzy Owen’s audacious lob from outside the box was knocked onto the bar and then grabbed by the keeper.

And shortly after, Kasha Petit’s 25-yard strike skimmed the crossbar.

The visitors managed no shots at goal in the first-half and won their first corner in added time. After 57 minutes the referee blew the half-time whistle with the hosts 2-0 up.

Into the second-half, Ellie Searle was pushed upfield, and after her cross was spilled, Grace Stanley couldn’t quite reach the ball to finish.

As it started raining again, Rangers created three chances in the space of a couple of minutes.

The visitors had their first shot on target in the 54th minute, but it was the R’s who added another goal a minute later.

Grace Stanley seized upon a misplaced back-pass before rounding the keeper and slotting the ball into an empty net.

Around the hour-mark, following a swift QPR counter-attack, the ball was knocked to Courtnay Ward-Chambers who proceeded to have her shot well-saved.

After some superb play in midfield by Izzy Owen, the ball found Ward-Chambers, but the move came to nothing.

On 68 minutes, Emily Hill’s low drive from around 25-yards was put behind by Lauren Webb.

Minutes later, Steve Quashie introduced Laura Hennessy at the expense of Izzy Owen.

In the 74th minute, Katie Akerman’s 20-odd yard strike just evaded the target.

Two minutes later, Alice Curr made way for Zoe Cohen.

United almost pulled a goal back when Ruth Fox forced a superb flying save from Nicole Melling.

The next change saw Renai McCrea replace Kasha Petit on 79 minutes.

Some excellent defending by Zoe Cohen when she took control of the ball close to the bye-line before successfully laying it off.

The final two substitutions were made after 83 minutes when Emilia Nygaard-Parsons and Ailish Carolan come on for Courtnay Ward-Chambers and Katie Akerman respectively.

In the closing stages, a United player’s lob ended up just wide of the target following a fortunate ricochet.

Just minutes from the end, a good move resulted in a nice one-two in the box, but Ellie Searle scuffed her shot wide of the far post.

Steve Quashie’s side then travelled to Carrow Road to take on Norwich City.

Steve Russell