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Kick off 14:00 (UK)

26 February 2023 Venue A J N Stadium, Keynsham Attendance

Kick off 14:00 (UK)

Keynsham Town
0 - 3
Exeter City FC
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Match Previews

📝 Women's Match Preview: Keynsham Town (A)

24 February 2023

Exeter City Women complete a busy week with their third away fixture in seven days, making the journey to North Somerset to face Keynsham Town in League action.

Keynsham have endured a tough season to date, winning four of their twelve league fixtures. The K’s have been clocking up the miles in recent months, with eight of their last nine games away from the AJN Stadium.

After heavy early season defeats against Bournemouth, Cardiff and the Grecians, Keynsham’s form has settled in recent months, with victories at Portishead Town, Maidenhead and Bournemouth enough to keep them clear of the relegation zone.

City were in rampant form when the team’s faced each other on opening day, hitting six before half time, Sarah Stacey with a hat trick, Zoe Watkins (2), Steph Beck and Jess Sandland all netting in the seven goal win. The recent returns of Gemma McGuinness and Kerry Bartlett offer more experience for Town and wins against Moneyfields and AFC Bournemouth this season emphasise that this is not a team to underestimate.

Abbie Britton and Aaron Wakley’s side have had a week of mixed emotions, disappointment at the weekend as their eight-match winning league run came to an end, but a ruthless bounce back on Wednesday evening as they hit St Austell for twelve.

With Cardiff competing in the FA Cup, City can extend their lead at the top to seven points with a victory on Sunday and make certain that the Dragons will have to be faultless in their chase.

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Match Reports

📝 Women's Match Report: Keynsham Town 0 City 3

27 February 2023

Exeter City Women recorded their thirteenth win of the season with a comfortable victory at Keynsham Town on Sunday in a victory that extended the Grecians lead at the top of the division to seven points.

City began with their usual intensity, Sarah Stacey chested an effort just wide of the goal before Jenna Markham tested the resolve of the home defence with her direct running. Markham came closest in the early moments, Phoebe Baker’s expertly weighted corner headed onto the crossbar from close range by the City forward.

The Grecians were being gifted a significant amount of time and space on the ball in midfield areas as Keynsham sat deep and defended their penalty area. Markham and Zoe Watkins tried from distance but City were having to remain patient, keeping possession and working the Town backline out of position.

With home goalkeeper Charlotte Haynes untroubled heading into half time, the Grecians were playing to create that key moment and it came just before the break. Emily Toogood and Markham worked the opportunity for the cross and Toogood’s delivery was flicked in by Stacey at the near post. Goal number seven of the week for her and 20 in the league this season, closing in on double her tally for last season.

Any belief that a City opener would see Keynsham change their game plan was soon dispelled as the second half began, the deep lying defence offering up possession to the Grecians midfield as they probed for clear openings. Chloe Gilroy was relishing the freedom offered and proved a constant threat as she looked to create for the frontline of Stacey and Markham.

A Toogood corner just evaded Mollie Taylor and Manfy Sharpe, before Gilroy hit a stunning drive that dipped narrowly over the bar. Jess Sandland awaited to tap home the latest Grecian delivery from wide but the Keynsham defender did well to get a touch and just take it out of her path. The goal always looked to be coming, but it cannot be denied how resilient the home defence were in defending their goal.

Sandland has developed a strong reputation for her set piece deliveries and it was from one of those that City finally landed the knockout blow. Sandland whipped the ball in to the near post and with a deft back heel flick Gilroy got the goal her performance deserved.

Phoebe Baker arrived in to the box with perfect timing to smash home a third late on as the scoreline began to reflect the Grecians dominance.

Three games in a week always provides a significant test and City will be happy enough with their week, especially after the defeat at AFC Bournemouth the previous weekend.

Abbie Britton and Aaron Wakley’s side now have a seven-point gap on Cardiff City Ladies, but, with games in hand, the destination of the trophy is still in the hands of the South Wales team.

With the Grecians already eclipsing last season’s points total and scoring more goals in the process, the feeling from both teams in the title race will be that this will be a closely fought fight to the end of the season.

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