WEST HAM UNITED 2
Ferrandi (pen) '21
- Sophie Perry and Charlotte Gurr score for Albion
- Giulia Ferrandi (penalty) and Shirvae Edwards on target for West Ham
- Albion end a run of two consecutive defeats
- The Seagulls remain third in the table
Brighton & Hove Albion women missed out on the chance to move up to second in the Premier League Southern Division table after they were held to a 2-2 draw by West Ham United at AFC Hornchurch.
With Charlton’s match against Lewes postponed, the Seagulls had the opportunity to leapfrog the Addicks into second place, but the the result leaves Albion in third and four points adrift of league leaders Cardiff City.
Sophie Perry and Charlotte Gurr were on target for the Seagulls, but Giulia Ferrandi’s penalty and a stunning strike from Shirvae Edwards earned West Ham a share of the spoils.
Albion were on the front foot straight from the kick-off, as Phoebe Leitch set up Amy Taylor inside the box, but the latter’s effort did not trouble Hammers keeper Aditi Chauhan.
The Seagulls took the lead in the third minute, when Gurr found Perry and the latter cut inside from the left flank and sent a low strike beyond the outstretched Chauhan.
Perry and Taylor linked up well to set up a chance for Kate Natkiel, whose curling effort sailed narrowly past the right-hand post.
But West Ham were given an unexpected foothold in the game when Ferrandi was fouled inside the box.
The Italian forward stepped up to take the subsequent penalty and sent her shot into the bottom left-hand corner in the 21st minute.
James Marrs’s side ventured forward in a bid to re-establish their lead, as Natkiel found Taylor inside the area, but her header went wide of the target.
Seagulls defender Deanna Cooper saw her shot deflected over the bar, before Gurr’s effort was comfortably saved by Chauhan.
The hosts did carry a threat going forward though and could have taken the lead themselves when Page Anderson-James was played through on goal, but Faye Baker was out quickly to thwart the forward.
Anderson-James had two further opportunities to put West Ham in front; her first attempt was saved by Baker and her second chance went wide of the right-hand post just moments later.
But the Seagulls regained the lead just before half-time, as Perry’s pinpoint ball in the box was clinically dispatched by Gurr.
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Leitch had Albion’s first meaningful opportunity after the re-start when she took advantage of some indecision in the West Ham defence, but saw her attempt saved by Chauhan.
Kirsty Barton tried her luck from distance, but her shot did not trouble the West Ham keeper.
The hosts netted another unlikely equaliser, when a bullet strike from Edwards sailed into the top corner to bring parity to the score-line once again.
Gurr came within touching distance of scoring a third goal for Albion after her long-distance free-kick was tipped over the bar at the last moment by Chauhan.
Substitute Emily Baker was inches away from claiming a third goal for the Seagulls when she headed a Gurr set-piece over the target.
Jay Blackie saw her header cleared off the line, before a bullet cross from Perry was diverted narrowly over the bar by Taylor and the Seagulls shared the spoils.
ALBION: Baker; Boswell, D Cooper, Ashton-Jones; Perry, Barton (Young 90), Blackie, Leitch (Stenning 72), Gurr; Natkiel (E Baker 77), Taylor.
SUBS NOT USED: Rowe, C Cooper.
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