Clapton CFC women fall short to Dulwich Hamlet

Emily Link opens the scoring for Clapton CFC women (Pic: Nick Davidson)

Emily Link opens the scoring for Clapton CFC women (Pic: Nick Davidson) - Credit: Archant

Dulwich Hamlet Reserves 2 Clapton CFC 1

Clapton Community FC narrowly lost out at Dulwich Hamlet Reserves in the opening game of the Greater London Women’s League Premier season on Sunday morning.

The behind closed doors clash was a marked improvement on the sole previous league meeting between the sides, in Walthamstow last season, where Hamlet ran out 5-1 winners.

Clapton took an early lead when striker Emily Link raced through and sidefooted the ball low past the goalkeeper.

But the home side then established their dominance, limiting Clapton to the odd counter attack.

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However, under the new management of Claudio Gomes, the east Londoners were disciplined and organised and left-back Chelsie Osbourne, in particular, was giving short shrift to any potential Hamlet attack.

On 45 minutes, Dulwich fired a warning shot with a long range free kick that bounced back off the crossbar.

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Then just a minute later, in first-half stoppage time, Mini Cruttwell pounced on a loose ball on the edge of the box and fired an emphatic finish into the top corner to equalise.

In the second half, the south Londoners ratcheted up the pressure and Clapton were finding it hard to keep hold of the ball.

On 57 minutes, the hosts managed to get their noses in front when a free kick from the left deflected in off a Clapton defender.

Although Dulwich continued to enjoy the majority of the possession, they were unable to add to their lead, while Clapton had a couple of half chances to snatch a draw, but in the end returned to east London empty-handed.

But this was not the only Clapton women’s team in action at the weekend, as the club looks to further expand its scope.

On Saturday, a development side set up to give more players a pathway into the first team, played their first game.

This also ended in defeat, however, as the new team were edged out 3-2 by Santacruzense in their Clapham Women’s League Division Two encounter.

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