LADIES REPORT: DONCASTER ROVERS BELLES 1 CHELSEA 1
Chelsea Ladies gained a point from our opening FA WSL Continental Cup game against Doncaster Rovers Belles.
Jess Sigsworth gave the home side the lead after just four minutes but Olina Vidarsdottir scored right on half-time to level for the Blues.
We returned to the Keepmoat Stadium just eight days after thrashing the Belles 4-0 in a league encounter between the two sides.
However, it was the home team that started brighter and opened the scoring early on. Mille Bright's lofted through-ball found Sigsworth, and the pacey striker held off two defenders to lift the ball over Shannon Lynn before smashing right-footed into the empty net.
Bright came close to doubling the home side's lead 20 minutes in but her powerful drive from the right-hand side of the area fizzed the wrong side of the right-hand upright.
Chelsea, who went into the game as league leaders, struggled to get into our stride in the opening 45 minutes and it was the hosts who again went close just before the half-hour mark.
Sigsworth wriggled clear of visiting centre-back pairing Kylie Davies and Sophie Ingle, only to see her well-struck effort clip the top of the crossbar and go over.
The hosts were made to pay for their missed chances in the 45th minute, though, when Vidarsdottir levelled with our first meaningful attempt on goal.
Captain Gardarsdottir curled in a corner from the right for her Icelandic compatriot to find the top right-hand corner for her first Chelsea goal.
The two sides cancelled each other out in a hard-fought second period but we almost nicked the win three minutes from time when Belles' midfielder Kasia Lipka came close to putting through her own net from Gardarsdottir's right-wing corner.
Chelsea (4-3-3): Lynn; Susi, K.Davies, Ingle, Vidarsdottir; Gardarsdottir (c), Ester (Buet 62), Coombs; Jakobsson, Aluko (Longhurst 74), Bleazard (Ward 62).
Unused subs: Myers, Cole, Spence, Holtham.