Swansea City's spirited second half comeback was enough to edge past Wrexham AFC 2-1 at the Swansea.com Stadium, in front of a home record 3,859 fans.
Ellie Lake’s sweeping long range strike, coupled with captain Katy Hosford’s one-on-one finish handed Swansea all three points, as they moved level on points with Wrexham in the Adran Premier League, behind only on goal difference.
The second half fightback was needed due to Carra Jones tapping home to put Wrexham into the lead with 13 minutes on the clock, albeit against the run of play.
Plaudits must be given to Del Morgan, who made show-stopper saves throughout the ninety minutes to restrict the scoreline as much as possible.
Steve Dale named one change to the side that beat Llandudno in the Bute Energy Welsh Cup for this fixture, as Lili Jones came back into the starting eleven for Libby MacKenzie.
Swansea City dominated the opening exchanges, having a plethora of opportunities in front of the Wrexham net.
The pinnacle of this early pressure landing in the tenth minute, when pinball erupted in the Wrexham box, forcing the centre back pairing of Louisha Doran and Katie Sharp into last-ditch blocks. The ball eventually fell to Hosford though, whose shot fizzed past Morgan’s gloves and over the crossbar.
Despite Swansea’s early pressure, Wrexham snatched the lead, courtesy of Carra Jones. Amber Lightfoot pounced on Jess Williams’ awful touch inside of the hosts’ box, before riding her challenge and getting a shot away. Claire Skinner parried the effort well, but on a plate for Carra Jones, who couldn’t miss in the 13th minute.
The home side responded immediately, as Chloe Chivers played a thumping cross-field ball to the on-running Stacey John-Davis, who took the ball in her stride and fired at goal. Morgan was positioned well though and parried the ball away from her net.
Both teams settled down over the next 15 minutes, before the Swans would have their next chance.
Set away off the outside of Chivers’ boot, Hosford was able to whip in a ball to Robyn Pinder inside of the box. With Doran touch-tight, Pinder rolled the centre back eight-yards out and sliced a left-footed shot at Morgan, who rose to the challenge, tipping the ball over.
Half time was whistled and Wrexham entered the changing rooms a goal to the good, with Swansea City passing up a multitude of opprtunities.
Swansea replicated their first half early dominance after the restart, but this time didn’t let Wrexham off the hook. Skipping up-field away from TJ Dickens, Lake placed a sweeping shot from outside the box to nestle perfectly into the corner of Morgan’s net to level the score in the 54th minute.
The Swans thought they burst into the lead just a few minutes later, after Pinder tapped home a rebound into the empty Wrexham net. However, the offside flag was raised, as she was deemed offside from Chivers’ initial shot, which was tipped onto the post by a fully stretched Morgan.
With Nieve Jenkins outmuscling Lili Jones in the centre of the park in the 66th minute, she was able to then chip a through ball over the top of the Wrexham backline and set through Hosford, who stabbed the ball past a helpless Morgan, seeing the lead now in Swansea's hands.
Lucy Finch should have doubled the Swans' lead in the 77th minute, but she couldn’t quite divert Hosford’s cut-back into the far corner of the Wrexham net.
With the relentless Swans pressure, Dale's side couldn't formulate any opportunities of their own to try and salavage a way back into the game, as the emphasis laid on resisiting the constant Swansea threat.
The game petered out, and Swansea would claim all three points. The home side failed to leapfrog Wrexham in the table though, as Morgan produced a bundle of high-class saves to stop the Swans from improving their league goal difference.
Swansea City: (4-3-3): Skinner, Powe, Finch, Lake, Jenkins (Wynne 73’), Pinder (Legall 80’), Chivers, Hosford (C), John-Davis (Thomas 73’), Brisland-Hancocks (Turner 89’), Williams.
Substitutes not used: Herbert.
Wrexham AFC: (4-3-3): Morgan, Pritchard, Doran, Sharp, Davies, L.Jones (Whitefoot 80'), Dickens, Lightfoot, Gibbard, C.Jones (Mackenzie 87’), Suckley.
Substitutes not used: Ankers, R.Jones, Spearing.
Referee: Ryan Kenny
Swansea City Bookings: Chivers 10’ (foul), John-Davis 64’ (foul), Hosford 76’ (foul)
Wrexham AFC Bookings: Pritchard 90+3’ (foul)