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      Palace Women open season in victory - find out and watch how

      London City Lionesses
      Crystal Palace Women
      Sibley 50'

      Crystal Palace Women started the season at Princes Park stadium, where they went head-to-head with London City Lionesses to secure a 0-1 win.


      • Eight new players made their Crystal Palace debut
      • Palace’s new ‘keeper Fran Kitching made her mark by producing two important saves early on
      • The Lionesses jumped to the defense on two occasions within two minutes as Polly Doran and Elise Hughes attempted to score
      • Half-time: London City Lionesses 0-0 Crystal Palace
      • Forty-nine minutes in, Isabella Sibley puts Palace in front with a poacher’s finish
      • Chloe Peplow attempted a header from a high cross but it was saved by the Lionesses’ keeper
      • The Lionesses head the ball into Palace’s box but hit the post
      • The home team were on track to score late on, but Annabel Johnson intercepts the effort with a slide tackle
      • Full-time: London City Lionesses 0-1 Crystal Palace

      The 2022/23 season kick-started with Palace Women on the road to face London City Lionesses at Princes Park stadium. After a summer of 15 new signings, eight players made their Palace debut and got off to a strong start: beating their local opponents 0-1.

      In the first 13 minutes, the Lionesses managed a few attempts on goal, however Palace ‘keeper, Fran Kitching, saved well each time.

      Palace too had multiple attacks early in the first-half. Breaking quickly, Polly Doran produced a low strike blocked by the home defence and, two minutes later, a similarly fast counter saw Elise Hughes’ shot also denied. A minute later, Coral Haines showed off a curling shot but it went just wide of the Lionesses’ post. This was by far Palace’s brightest spell of the game so far.

      Women's match highlights: London City Lionesses 0-1 Crystal Palace

      Twenty-two minutes in saw another attempt to score from Palace’s Isabella Sibley, but her effort was collected by Lionesses ‘keeper Shae Yañez. Half an hour in, momentum looked to have swung back in the Lionesses’ favour with a few long balls, however Kitching retrieved the ball when required yet again.

      As Palace took control back over possession, Hughes struck smoothly just over the bar. Anna Filbey then produced a low effort which passed just beyond the post, leaving the Lionesses under pressure but still level.

      Haines supported Sibley by setting the ball up nicely on the edge of the box for an eye-catching strike saved by Yañez. Shortly after, Annabel Blanchard took a free-kick on the edge of the Lionesses’ box but again it was collected by the Lionesses ‘keeper.

      The Lionesses took control of the ball as they pushed forward towards the end of the first-half, when a deflected cross landed the ball on top of the Palace net, forcing a corner. The hosts ping the ball in, bouncing it off the Palace bar and out for a goal kick.

      Forty-four minutes in, the Lionesses struck from outside the box, but sent it sailing just high of the bar. For the third time is almost as many minutes a long-range shot thwacked the Palace bar and rebounded out, with A long-range shot hit the Palace bar, causing it to rebound out. Anna Filbey followed up and ensured it was cleared just as the game hit half-time.

      This was a tense period in an otherwise dominant half from Palace. Despite both sides’ efforts, the game somehow remained 0-0 as the two teams left the field.

      This wouldn’t last long after the restart. In the 49th-minute, Chloe Arthur struck from outside the box, however hit the top of the bar to send the ball ricocheting back into the box. Sibley reacted fastest, coming in fast with to clinch the season’s first goal and eventual matchwinner.

      Sibley drove goal-bound to attempt a second, but this was quickly claimed by the Lionesses’ ‘keeper. The young attacked then gained control of the ball yet again and caught the post with her resulting effort.

      Five minutes of added time saw both teams fight in the final stretch, with the Lionesses seeking a way back in, but Palace held on to secure victory on the opening day of the season.

      They will next face Coventry United on Saturday, 27th August at Hayes Lane. Click here to buy tickets.

      Lionesses: Yañez, Neville (Joel 64), Napier, Bennett, Rodgers, Nolan, Muya (Shepherd 56), Agg (Hopcroft 86), Heuchan (Fitzgerald 87), Ewens, Primus.

      Subs not used: Kitching, Girasoli, Flemi, Pedersen, Cull.

      Palace: Kitching, Everett, Arthur, Peplow (Reilly 62), Johnson, Hughes, Sibley, Filbey, Doran (Barton 76), Haines, Blanchard (Sharpe 73).

      Subs not used: Negri, Olding, Waldie, Gibbons, Guyatt, Noble.