Neil Redfearn manager of Sheffield United Women in good spirits before kick off Sheffield United Women v Leicester City Women, Womens Championship football match, Proact Stadium, Chesterfield, UK - 13 Sep 2020 Photo: Anna Gowthorpe for The FA

Valiant 10-player Sheffield United hold out for victory at Charlton Athletic

Sheffield United have recorded a 1-0 victory over Charlton Athletic at The Oakwood this afternoon despite playing for more than 50 minutes with 10 players.

The Blades had captain Leandra Little dismissed late on in the first half for a second bookable offence but Neil Redfearn’s side battled valiantly to protect their one-goal lead and even went close to extending their advantage on a couple of occasions.

A hard-fought opening saw few clear-cut chances created. When the first real goalscoring opportunity did arrive, it produced a goal for the visitors. Youngster Lucy Watson was brought down by Charley Clifford in the box and Katie Wilkinson successfully dispatched the resulting penalty kick.

Ciara Watling then tested visiting keeper Fran Kitching from distance as Charlton Athletic searched for a way back into the match before Sheffield United captain Little was dismissed after picking up a second booking for a foul on Jess King.

Despite going down to 10 players, The Blades were unlucky not to be two goals to the good at the break, Eartha Cumings producing a good save to keep out a Jade Pennock effort.

Sheffield United had another good chance straight after the break but Wilkinson failed to hit the target, dragging her shot wide via the woodwork.

The home side remained in the game, largely due to the heroics of goalkeeper Cumings. She denied Melissa Johnson, Pennock and Wilkinson as the second half unfolded.

The Addicks did apply some pressure in the final third in the closing stages of the match with Kitching superbly saving Beth Lumsden’s effort in second half stoppage time as Sheffield United held on to collect the three points which takes them back up to third in the FA Women’s Championship table. Charlton Athletic remain bottom of the table but do have a game in hand on most of the sides above them.

Sheffield United are the odd ones out after the international break and have a week off while Riteesh Mishra takes his Charlton Athletic side to Lewes in their next match.

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