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Women's Football News
Swansea City slipped to a second defeat in their UEFA Women's Champions League campaign, with Slovenian hosts ZNK Krka, netting two goals in each half, at the Matija Gubec stadium in Krsko.
There was a positive and creative opening from Swansea during the eighth minute, when Laura-May Walkley combined with Lindsay Morgan, only for her goalbound effort to be cleared by Kristina Erman.
Krka managed to move in front during the 27th minute, with Erman finding Andreja Nikl in space for her to shoot home.
On the half hour, the Swans went close to gaining an equaliser, only for Jodie Passmore to dispatch a 30-yard free kick which keeper Anja Kadunc did well to save.
The action then instantly switched to the opposite end, with a left sided probing run by Erman in Swansea territory, she then found Alena Milkovic available to allow her to fire in an angled shot.
Despite that double setback, there was an option for Swansea to move off the mark just before the turnaround, with Laura Davies and Walkley combining well, Passmore then continued the attack, but her goalmouth cross was cleared by Dominika Conc.
Krka increased the attacking tempo within two minutes of the second half, adding a third goal with Conc netting with a fierce drive.
Soon after, Swansea were awarded a free kick after Davies had been fouled by Nikl, and Sarah Adams was unfortunate with her effort being saved by Kadunc.
Midway into the second half Krka added a fourth goal, when an Erman free kick was sent wide over Swansea's defensive wall, and beyond goalkeeper Gemma Border.
With eight minutes remaining, there was additional misery for the Welsh side when substitute Rhiannon Summerfield was sent off after pulling back Dragica Stipic, on her through route to goal.
Stipic then stepped forward, to plant the resulting twenty yard free kick inches wide of the upright.
"It's been a really good experience, like nothing that Swansea Ladies have had before", remarked Welsh under-19 international Rachel Rowe, at the after match interview.
"I think when we go home, we can just train harder, get fitter and hopefully, come back next year and do better.
"It was a much better performance from the team, once more against another strong side, especially under floodlights for the very first time, which was a new experience for the players", said Swansea manager Ian Owen.
"We started the game well and competed throughout the ninety minutes, but some basic errors cost us goals at important times.
"Krka are a semi professional side playing at a similar sort of level as our opening opponents Bardolino and with us being new to the competition we are very much aware that this is a learning curve, and we take a lot of positives out of our performance.
"We were very hard working and committed to play better than we did in the previous game, and that came across to everybody.
"With the match being played in the evening, there was the absence of the heat intensity which proved to better for us, the pitch was slick following a heavy downpour the previous evening, which allowed the ball to be passed better.
"A major factor was that everybody in the squad gave 100%, but probably the lack of experience of playing at a higher level, along with a few wrong decisions at important times coincided with the scoreline."
(Report by Robert Clement)
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