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Preview | Royals take on Chelsea at Kingsmeadow to kick off new year

Reading FC Women return on Sunday for first game of 2020

3 January 2020

Kelly Chamber’s Royals return to action this coming Sunday when they visit Kingsmeadow to take on Chelsea FC Women as the FA Barclay’s Women’s Super League returns for 2020.

Chelsea FC Women vs Reading FC Women

Sunday 5th January, 12.30pm

Kingsmeadow

Barclays FA Women’s Super League

Kelly Chamber’s Royals return to action this coming Sunday when they visit Kingsmeadow to take on Chelsea FC Women as the FA Barclay’s Women’s Super League returns for 2020.

After a 3 week break since they were last in action, Reading will be keen to capitalise on the momentum that saw them finish 2019 in strong form and hopefully bring some great team performances into the new year.

The side put on an incredible come-from-behind performance last time out, that saw them trailing 1-0 to Tottenham with less than 15 minutes of the game remaining. In what has become a trademark of the Royals this season, they refused to give up and miraculously turned the game around, finishing the decade with a 3-1 win at Adams Park after an equaliser from Jo Potter in the 77th minute, a second from Remi Allen on the 88th and the icing on the cake provided by Amalie Eikeland with the latest goal in WSL history in the 9th minute of additional time.

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Last time we met

Reading last played Chelsea on December 11th in the final game of the Continental Cup group stage, just days before the aforementioned victory against Spurs. Reading needed a win to top Group D, but a draw would have been good enough to qualify in second place just behind Chelsea, unless West Ham could beat Crystal Palace by 9 goals. The Royals decided not to leave anything up to chance and put on a solid display against Emma Hayes’ Chelsea. Jo Potter scored from a free-kick on the quarter-of-an-hour mark, before chances were had at either end of the pitch before half-time. Rachel Laws pulled off some fantastic saves for the Royals, but Chelsea managed to get the equaliser with 25 minutes of the game remaining with a fantastic long-range effort from Deanna Cooper. The full-time result was 1-1 and the game went onto penalties to determine who would take an additional point. As West Ham were several goals up against Palace – eventually going on to win 7-0 – Reading went on to put qualification in their own hands and win 2-4 on penalties. Royals’ scorers came in the form of Fara Williams, Brooke Chaplen, Millie Farrow and Remi Allen. Rachel Laws first denied Beth England by tipping her shot onto the post and then goalscorer Cooper whose spot kick she saved to guarantee victory in the shootout and qualification to the Quarter-Finals of the Continental Cup.

 

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Pre-match chat

With a positive final run of games in 2019, Manager Kelly Chambers is grateful of her team’s mentality, but feels the break wasn’t overly well timed, with such positive energy in the camp. “The girls had a game plan to put into place and over the last 3 games of the year they did that and that’s credit to them. It shows that when they do that, the performances they can put in and results they can get. We won penalties against Chelsea and took all 3 points against Tottenham, it’s a shame that the break came when it did, really, as we were just building momentum, but it was good for the girls. We’re going to come back stronger in 2020 and that begins with Chelsea on Sunday.”

The match is available to watch on both the BBC Red Button Service and FA Player.

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Reading FC Women are next in action at home as Birmingham City visit Adams Park on next Sunday, January 12th for a 2pm kick off in the Barclay’s FA Women’s Super League.

Tickets for this match and all Reading FC Women home games are available here from just £6.

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