304 eager fans watched Clapton CFC’s first competitive victory at the reopened Old Spotted Dog this Sunday, with a raft of goals taking the women’s first team to the top of the league table.
The early goal helped set the tone. Ana Holmes, breaking down the left, played in Teju Callisto who evaded the attention of two defenders to find room to fire the ball past the Denham keeper. 1-0 CCFC.
Recent issues in midfield seemed to have been cleared up, and a much more compact Clapton side set the tone of the first half. Holmes buzzed Denham throughout, preventing them from building from the back whilst linking up effectively with Clapton’s attackers.
Emily Link made an instant impact coming on for injured Marta Casanovas toward the end of the first half. A pullback from Callisto found Link arriving on the edge of the area. With her first touch, she lifted the ball over the keeper. There then seemed a few seconds where time stood still as everyone – including Link – waited for the ball to drop under the crossbar and into the net. 2-0.
Denham’s woes continued when their keeper cleared the ball, only for it to hit Callisto on the back and rebound into the net. 3-0
Clapton had chances abound, but their fourth goal came from a foul on Callisto, which captain Annie Lyons converted from the penalty spot.
Denham bagged themselves a consolation goal, also from a penalty. The remaining drama came from a series of late challenges on Verity Phillips and Chelsie Osborne. Clapton stood firm though and rounded out their best performance of the season so far.
Player of the match