MK Dons Ladies travelled to the training ground of Women’s Super League side Chelsea FC for a pre season fixture with a somewhat depleted squad, due to missing a number of players through illness and work commitments. Despite the lack of experience the younger players that had equipped themselves so well in the previous fixture had a nervous start, and Dons Ladies quickly found themselves 2-0 down to a Chelsea team made up of First and reserves with experience at the highest level.
Within 10 minutes the home side looked comfortable and had taken a 2 goal lead, before Dons passing ability began to pay dividends and the game opened up chances for the visitors. A chance for striker Dan Borielle would have seen the lead cut in half, but she saw her goal disallowed for an offside decision. Borielle went close again after Bryony Levitt, herself settling into her game turned the full back inside out, but still Dons were chasing that elusive first goal to get them back into the game. Chelsea then scored their 3rd to give them a 3 nil lead at the break, thanks to a mixture of poor defensive decisions and some excellent passing from the higher level opposition.
MK Dons FC Ladies made a number of changes at half time and started a much improved 2nd half performance, playing their own passing game in the early stages of the second half and enabling them to snatch a goal back. Heather McDonnell claimed Dons goal thanks to a calm finish in the area, McDonnell calmly rounding the defenceless GK and slotting the ball into the net. Unfortunately all hopes of a late Dons come back vanished as the inexperience at the heart of Dons defence saw them concede 3 more times to wrap up the game comfortably for an impressive Chelsea side by a scoreline of 6-1.
Despite the defeat, Dons Manager John Dyer remains positive, “The positives for us today vastly outweigh the negatives, when you look at the overall performance from today. We were beaten by a group of very talented players and a female club that is known as one of the best in the Country. We were honoured to play here today and to experience playing against such opposition, it is clear from this that there is still work to do but when you consider where Chelsea currently are in the WSL this is not too disappointing. We still have players returning from holidays, illness and injuries yet to come and this should provide us with an excellent base for the fast improving young side.”