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Millwall Lionesses (Agg 9, Cole pen 82) London Bees 2 (Gaylor 35, Wakefield 59)
Millwall Lionesses battled back to earn themselves a point in their London derby match with London Bees despite having to play the last fifteen minutes with ten players.
Starting off on the front foot, the Lionesses stuck a usual early goal when just before the ten minute mark, right back Naomi Cole darted up the line to cross a low ball in to the Bees penalty area, midfielder Lily Agg latched on to the ball to slot it beyond the keeper and into the bottom corner.
With both teams playing a 4-3-3 formation, the battles started in the middle of the pitch, both teams working hard to keep the ball and put pressure on the other. Bees' midfielder Paige Wakefield was starting to get into the game and making decisive passes in an attempt to break the Millwall back line.
Due to the battles in the midfield, the Lionesses defence had to change their game and instead of feeding the midfield trio, went for the long ball option to get Lillie Billson and Shauni Griffiths behind the Bees defense. This tactic wasn't working well for Millwall and just gave the dangerous Bees more time on the ball, until on the 33 minute the Bees stung and equalised with a goal from Amber Gaylor.
The second half started with the Bees on top, their goal in the first half seemed to give them an extra lift and they grew confident on the ball. An early booking in the 46th for Lillie Fenlon-Billson for a foul on Charlotte Herson gave the Bees another lift and the added composure they showed on the ball meant Millwall manager Alberto Kurti had to make a change. Young Shirvae Edwards came on for Griffiths out wide and instantly fed Cherrelle Albert through on goal but the striker's shot was saved by the oncoming keeper.
With chance after chance for both teams, the crowd knew a goal would be coming soon and it came in the 59th minute from a Bees corner, midfielder Wakefield rising highest to head beyond Sarah Quantrill and into the net to send her side ahead for the first time.
Things got worse for Millwall when Fenlon-Billson was shown a second yellow card for a late challenge on Aoife Hurley and the Lionesses went down to ten players.
Millwall tried to steady themselves and put the fight to the Bees. Albert dropped in to midfield, to fill the gaps and block the attacks and pushing for an equaliser, the Lionesses looked to counter the Bees, midfielder Agg getting more of the ball and driving into the Bees half.
Taking on players and forcing herself into the Bees penalty area, Agg was fouled in the box, the referee pointing to the spot. Naomi Cole stepped up and sent the keeper the wrong way to level the scores once again.
With the final minutes of the game, both teams were looking for the winning goal, but both had to settle for the point as the referee blew his whistle.
Millwall Lionesses: Sarah Quantrill, Naomi Cole, Sophie Perry, Kylie Davies, Dionne Lennon, Leeta Rutherford, Lilli Maple (sub Kim Stenning 75mins), Lily Agg, Cherrelle Albert, Shauni Griffiths (sub Shirvae Edwards 54mins), Lillie Fenlon-Billson.
London Bees: Cherie Rowlands, Samantha Chappell (sub Lucy Loomes 60mins), Chontele Lawrence, Aoife Hurley, Billie Brooks, Charlotte Herson, Amber Gaylor, Paige Wakefield, Anneka Nuttall, Dawn Mallett, Sydney Hinchcliffe.
(Report by www.fawsl.com)
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