Ayisi “can’t wait” to play in front of Rooks fans at the Dripping Pan once again this Sunday
Lewes striker Freda Ayisi is confident the Rooks will secure their first win of the new season at the second time of asking when they host London City Lionesses at the Dripping Pan on Sunday.
Lewes lost 2-1 to Bristol City last weekend but are preparing for the first competitive home game of the campaign, and Ayisi believes the squad’s hard work over the summer will soon show on the pitch.
“Everyone is still positive,” she said. “We’re still confident we can get results. We’ve been working on doing what we need to do in the next game against the Lionesses, so it’s quite calm at the moment.”
Lewes’ kick-off to the FA Women’s Championship season was slightly disrupted by the postponement of our opening clash to Charlton a fortnight back.
But Ayisi is confident the team will swiftly get into their stride.
“It feels like we’ve been together for a long time,” she added. “Even in pre-season we’ve felt pretty confident coming into it. So even though we lost at the weekend we feel like we can get the result we need this Sunday, and then push on from there.”
The Rooks last played London City back in February, when two of our current players scored for the Lionesses in a 3-2 away victory for the London club.
Ini Umotong had given Lewes the lead only for Atlanta Primus and our new winger Kallie Balfour to nudge the Lionesses in front. Umotong then equalised via a late penalty, but Ellie Mason – signed by the Rooks in July – went up the other end and poked home the winner.
“We’re obviously devastated to lose,” boss Simon Parker had said after the game. “I actually feel we were the better side in the second half and probably on the whole a draw is fair.
“What we’re looking at now is just trying to get into those habits of ‘let’s not give up, let’s go for the win’. We want to lay all the foundations for next season, now.”
Seven months on and we’ll see if Parker’s expectations have been met. The boss will certainly be hoping for an organised defensive display similar to the one that earned Lewes a 1-0 win at the Lionesses last October.
One to watch
There’s nothing quite like scoring on your competitive debut and Republic of Ireland international Rianna Jarrett has gone a step further by netting in her first two appearances for new side London City.
Jarrett has twice found the net from the penalty spot – during wins over Liverpool and Crystal Palace – and manager Phillips has been talking up the abilities of London City’s new No 9.
“She’s got an unbelievable football mind the way she thinks about the game, reads the game, understands it and plays within her strengths,” Phillips said recently.
“She’s obviously a proven goal scorer at every level, but I think she’s so much more than that to the team, because she’s a leader on and off the pitch as well and has come up big in key moments as she has in the last two matches.”
Lewes v London City tickets
There are still tickets on sale for the game on Sunday, which kicks off at 2pm at the Dripping Pan.
You can buy Lewes FC tickets today and save time and money at the turnstiles. Ticket prices are as follows:
Adults – £11 general admittance (£12 on the gate)
Concessions – £7 general admittance (£8 on the gate)
Kids (under 16) – free!
Beach hut for six people – £99