A late strike from Pickett broke the Lionesses hearts last night as the game looked destined to end all square.
The hosts started very brightly and with their first attack of the game found the back of the net. After initially winning a corner, the ball fell at the back post for Beckett who smashed it past Chloe Sansom, as she rushed off with joy after putting the hosts ahead inside the first minute of the game.
It seemed as if it would be another very slow start from the Lionesses, but it wasn't to be. From the goal the team had switched on and started to play some very good football in the midfield and dominated possession in spells. Chances were still not falling for Millwall, but the play was good and as Chris urged his players on, it was only a matter of time before a chance would fall for the visitors.
The hosts, however, did not let up as the game became very even, with both sides having a good amount of the ball. Neither side were able to do anything dangerous with the ball to cause any problems for the opposition.
The Lionesses continued to show good spirit, and were eventually rewarded after a mistake at the back by the Bees allowed Lia Catalado to pick up the ball. Masterfully placing the ball beyond Sarah Quantrill, Lia scored both her's and Millwall's first goal of the league season, something that would give the side huge confidence going into half time.
The second half got underway and Millwall wanted to keep the mentality they showed in the first half and take that into the second, as they went in search of their first league win of the season. Both sides were trying to play to their strengths, but at the same time neither could get any real control in the game and dictate the play like they would have wanted to. Toussaint constantly looked dangerous for the hosts down the right but struggled to find anyone in support.
The arrival of Georgie Giddings in the side definitely helped the side and there was a massive difference in composure and confidence on the ball. After serving her 2 game ban and coming off the bench against the Hammers on Sunday, this was her first start of the season and Chris had full praise for her performance after the game, as the experienced midfielder motivated the younger players.
Lenny Priest impressed at the back for Millwall again. At only 16 years of age, the level of maturity shown by the centre half, you'd think she'd been playing for years: straight into a tackle and not hide from anything. Priest is growing into a top Millwall centre half, especially around the influence of others.
The hosts thought they nicked it with 10 minutes to go, however the goal was chalked off after a foul on the Millwall keeper Chloe Sansom. It was a decision not taken well by the hosts, but they would get another chance late on.
With minutes remaining, the game looked as if it would end all level and the two teams who tasted defeat on the opening day of the season would split the points at the Hive, but this was not to be the case. It was joy for the Bees and heartbreak for Millwall as Pickett unleashed an unstoppable curling effort goal-bound that went past a diving Chloe Sansom and into the far corner as scenes of joy and celebration erupted at The Hive.
Tough to take but more importantly another step in the right direction for the Lionesses who go again on Sunday against local rivals Crystal Palace in search of a first win of the season.
Millwall Lionesses Starting XI:
Sansom, Cowan, Priest, Stenning, Powell, Cataldo (Rossiter 66) , Lumsden, Clarke, Fitzgerald, Giddings, Ravenscroft (Young 84)
Millwall Lionesses unused subs: Taylor, Mackie, Auguste, Charles, Bailes
London Bees Starting XI:
Quantrill, Johnson, Wilson, Toussaint, Lea, Lane, Davy (Pickett 61), Littlejohn, Howells (Forman 88), Beckett, Will (Gould 86)
London Bees unused subs: Rolandsen, Gibson, Nunn, Dench