Report | Portsmouth 1 Argyle Women 0
Argyle Women suffered a heartbreaking 1-0 defeat against promotion hopefuls Portsmouth on Sunday, despite a superb away performance.
Argyle dominated the first half through counter-attacking spells that caused concern for Jay Sadler’s side early on. Portsmouth fought back through numerous set pieces in the first half and got their biggest chance from a penalty kick that was saved by Jasmine Read. Argyle’s electric energy continued into the second half and once again the Greens controlled the majority of the match, but a Portsmouth cross to the far post that trickled into the bottom corner was all the home side needed to secure three points.
Pompey thought they had scored in the first minute of the game. A cross towards the near post from Sophie Quirk found the foot of Alison Hall who slotted the ball into the bottom corner, but the official’s flag was raised before the forward had a chance to celebrate.
Lily Greenslade came close for the Greens minutes later after breaking through the defence and ahead of her marker. Her shot flew towards the top of the goal, but keeper Hannah Haughton palmed the shot wide.
Spurred on by this close effort, Argyle began to dominate the middle stages of the half, with counter attacks spearheaded by Amber Pollock becoming a common threat for the Pompey back four.
Portsmouth were not without chances of their own - Tierney Scott and Quirk both testing keeper Read towards the end of the half – but with minutes left on the clock Portsmouth had their best chance of the half from a penalty won by Quirk. Hall stepped up to take and placed the ball to the side of Read, but the Argyle goalkeeper saved brilliantly, pushing the shot wide and keeping the scoreline level at the break.
Pollock, Greenslade, Kayley Lane, Zoe Cunningham and Beth Ireland linked up beautifully in a multitude of attacking efforts, but the final pass was all that was missing from the visitors’ dominance. Pollock came close to securing the lead in the 48th minute with a driven shot at an angle, but Haughton saved.
Pompey began to integrate themselves back into the second half in the middle stages, with set-pieces becoming a crucial part of their attack. Ella Humphrey came close to breaking into the area during Pompey’s period of pressure but defender Rosie Train crucially intercepted.
With ten minutes left on the clock, Portsmouth took their chance in front of goal, from a corner. A cross to the back post found the heel of Younger whose effort trickled into the bottom corner, giving the Blues a late lead which they did not relinquish, despite Argyle’s best efforts.
Argyle fought hard in the final stages of the match, constantly breaking on counter-attacks in an attempt to catch the defence off-guard. A flurry of set-pieces fell for the Greens, who continued to attempt to level the scoreline, but even with seven minutes of added time it was not enough to claw back an equaliser.
Argyle will continue their month on the road, travelling to Gillingham on Sunday, 19th March
Argyle: 1 Jasmine Read, 3 Rosie Train, 5 Panagiota Papaioannou, 6 Lucy Hack, 13 Katie Dickson, 8 Kayley Lane, 16 Georgia Wilson (9 Erin O’Shea), 20 Beth Ireland (18 Imy Crawford), 10 Zoe Cunningham (7 Charlotte Whitmore), 11 Amber Pollock, 27 Lily Greenslade.