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Chelsea dashed by late penalty

Chelsea’s first group match in the UEFA Women’s Champions League ended with honours even as they shared a 2-2 draw with Real Madrid at the Estadio Alfredo di Stefano, but two late controversial moments may well have denied them victory.

As the sole remaining club carrying the flag for the Barclays WSL in the competition, Chelsea went into what is on paper, the toughest of their six matches, and this looked to be the case when the hosts took a tenth minute lead, albeit through an Olga Carmona effort which took a wicked deflection off Millie Bright and wrongfooted Ann-Katrin Berger.

Chelsea reacted well to the early setback and sought a quick reply, but needed to remain patient until shortly before half time, when an unmarked Niamh Charles headed in the equaliser from a deep cross by Ashley Lawrence.

Sam Kerr twice forced a good save from Real goalkeeper Misa Rodriguez but the striker was not to be denied and with fifteen minutes remaining, she put her side ahead of the first time when she firmly headed home from Charles’ cross.

Just two minutes later though, Real were handed a great chance to level the scores again as Jessie Fleming fouled Athenea del Castillo and a penalty was awarded. Replays suggested though that contact took place outside the area, with del Castillo’s momentum taking her over the line. Carmona stepped up and emphatically buried her shot to make it 2-2 and leave matters in the balance again.

Still Chelsea could have won it with Lauren James hitting the bar and Charles finding the net again, only to be foiled by an offside flag.

Keynsham Town defender Celyn Garton holds off Natasha Wild of Selsey Women.