BY JONNY SINGER
Eartha Cumings was critical of Charlton Athletic’s display as they suffered a 1-0 defeat at London Bees.
The hosts are still bottom of the FA Women’s Championship standings but their first victory – ending a six-game losing streak – has moved them within a point of the Addicks.
Riteesh Mishra’s side have played two fixtures less but only the display of Cumings prevented it being a more emphatic reverse at The Hive.
Georgia Robert bundled in from a corner with 20 minutes to go to earn the Bees a deserved win against the Addicks, who had Rachel Newborough sent off late on for a second yellow card offence.
The home side had the better of a stop-start first half and Cumings made several fine stops to keep the scores level.
Having already seen Flo Gamby’s long-range effort clip the bar and go over, Cumings had to be alert to hold a powerful Amelia Hazard strike.
Merrick Will skipped past Jaime Gotch, only for Cumings to tip her shot around the near post.
Brooke Nunn had a similar effort palmed away, with the Scottish stopper looking unbeatable.
But the home side finally found a breakthrough from a set-piece, a corner floated to the far post causing a scramble, from which Robert poked home.
The closest that Charlton came to scoring was a drilled effort from Charley Clifford in first-half stoppage time, that skipped just wide of the post. Bees keeper Sarah Quantrill did have a couple of moments of alarm, clawing away a mis-hit cross and just beating Jess King to an under-hit back pass.
Cumings, only just back fit after a wrist problem, said: “We needed to iron some things out in the dressing room after that. It shouldn’t have taken until a player of ours got sent off to kick us into gear and put pressure on them, it just wasn’t good enough.
“I’m obviously pleased to play, it’s been a long time – I’m really buzzing about that, but it’s just a shame about the result and hopefully the next game we can make a step up.
“I was really pleased with my individual performance, obviously having not played a competitive game in so long it could have gone either way, so I’m glad it went well.
“As a team, we really need to get back to basics.
“We let ourselves get flustered, and let the game get away from us. It shook us, and we need to learn to overcome that, keep it simple and do what we know we can do, because we’re a good team and we know we can bounce back.”
Charlton head to second-placed Durham on Sunday. Their opponents are unbeaten and only behind leaders Sheffield United on goal difference.
To follow the action and sign up for The FA Player’s live Barclays FA Women’s Super League coverage visit womenscompetitions.thefa.com
Crystal Palace host Coventry United on Sunday.
Dulwich Hamlet Women stayed top of the London and South East Women’s Regional Football League after a 3-2 home victory against Dartford.
American trio Havana McElvaine, Brit Saylor and Ali Rowe were all on the scoresheet.
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