Match Report – Cambridge City Ladies v Leyton Orient WFC

Sunday 23rd September

FA Women’s Cup

  It’s FA Cup weekend 2nd Round Qualifying 60 ties taking place with the FAWNL Division One sides entering the competition, has thrown up several interesting looking ties, Women’s Football East is spoilt for choice, heading to Cambridge this Sunday to watch Cambridge City Ladies v Leyton Orient WFC. 

 So much for summer the first weekend in autumn beginning with a blanket of heavy rain moving across the country overnight and lasting long into the day, the sun should be out by kick-off by it’s a question of whether the pitches will hold up or not? 

Cambridge City Ladies go into this Sunday’s 2nd Round Qualifying tie in fantastic form, leading the ERWFL Premier Division just below the FAWNL with a 100% win rate from 5 matches played 3 league games along with two victories in the earlier rounds of the FA Women’s Cup, a 2-0 success away to Newmarket Town Ladies in the Preliminary Round then a 14-0 win against Cambridgeshire Premiership side Riverside Ladies in 1st Round Qualifying, a few hundred pounds collected in prize money already the winning side receiving £450 today.

   Looking to build on their debut season in the ERWFL Premier Division where they clinched runners-up spot last season, Cambridge City have bolstered their squad bringing in striker Shannon Shaw who was prolific in front of goal for Cambridgeshire Premiership side, March Town United Ladies last season. Hannah Bodily returns after a previously playing for Bedford Ladies as does Sofia Castiglione who was with Ipswich Town Women’s academy side last season.

   Leyton Orient WFC have faced Cambridge City once before in the FA Women’s Cup, a 3-1 success in the 2016/17 season as they went on to achieve promotion to the FAWNL (FAWPL as it was then). Leyton Orient WFC progressing well enjoyed a strong debut season amongst the South East Division One front-runners for much of the campaign. After 5 matches this season are currently fifth in the table early stages the two promoted sides Crawley Wasps Ladies and Billericay Town Ladies setting the pace, those behind such as Leyton Orient more than capable of chasing them down. Entering the FA Women’s Cup in 2nd Round Qualifying along with the rest of the FAWNL Division One clubs. 

  Both sides stronger than they were two seasons ago. The venue for today’s FA Women’s Cup tie, Trinity College Sports Ground. One of several college/university sports grounds dotted about the city. Very much in the heart of the university quarter I’ve seen Cambridge City several times recently but never at home. Must confess to not enjoying driving in Cambridge but I know that part of the city well. Heavy rain falling all morning it was questionable as the whether the game would be on but more or less as I arrived the rain stopped and the sun came out as predicted. A pavilion overlooking the pitch serving hot drinks, the playing surface itself in excellent shape and had absorbed the rain well. The umbrella wasn’t needed afterall.

Cambridge City Ladies starting XI – Tafadzwa Mhundury, Amy Reed, Lauren Tomlinson, Becca Fay (C), Robyn Phillips, Hannah Bodily, Sofia Castiglione Charlotte Gillies, Laura Mills, Sarah Mosley & Shannon Shaw. Subs – Carla Penny, Anna Kanz, Anna Goggin, Bella Simmons.

Leyton Orient WFC Starting XI – Naomi Ogunde, Francesca Cagetti, Kathryn Canavan, Hannah Porter, Chloe McNee, Danielle Griffiths (C), Lisa Holmback, Tara O’Halloran, Rebecca Hirst, Sophie Le Marchand & Lisa Fulgence. Subs – Connie Monteil-McCann, Belen Ripoll-Douton, Egle Trezzi, Jade Henry & Lydia Cooper.

   Two ex-Cambridge graduates lining up for Leyton Orient this afternoon, club captain Danielle Griffiths and Rebecca Hirst having studied in the city. It’s the visitors to kick-off the first half Leyton Orient wearing an all red kit with Cambridge City lined up in their home colours white shirts with black across the shoulders, black shorts with black and white hooped socks. A cautious start Leyton Orient probing both flanks, Cambridge’s full backs Amy Reed and Lauren Tomlinson dealing with the threat. Lisa Holmback busy in the centre of midfield early on for Leyton Orient winning the ball brings it on before looking to send Sophie Le Marchand through on goal as she makes a run inside from the left the pass a little too heavy allowing Cambridge goalkeeper Tafadzwa Mhundury to collect.

Cambridge City’s, Shannon Shaw contesting the header with Leyton Orient’s, Francesca Cagetti

   Le Marchand looking for the ball on the left wing collects from a throw turning inside shifts the ball, a drop of the shoulder and she moves to the byline, Cambridge captain Becca Fay staying with her prevents the cross coming in. Leyton Orient press the ball Cambridge not getting any momentum going forwards, Tara O’Halloran on for Holmback she lofts the ball forwards into Lisa Fulgence central back to goal holds it up before laying it out to the right for Rebecca Hirst closing in a strike goalwards from outside the area the ball running wide across the six yard box.

Lisa Fulgence looking to hold up the ball for Leyton Orient

  A good start from Leyton Orient, Le Marchand finding space drifting inside especially when the ball is played up to Fulgence. The ball falling to her 25 yards out Le Marchand fires a shot in towards the Cambridge goal dipping Mhundury is right behind it takes it low. Cambridge find a little joy out on the left as Shannon Shaw comes across to pressurise the Leyton Orient defence, does well as Laura Mills coming in nips in to steal the ball running in behind lifts a cross into the box the ball intercepted and cleared by Chloe McNee for Leyton Orient.

   GOAL! Leyton Orient capitalise on their good start to the game by taking an early lead in the 7th minute, attacking push bodies forwards from midfield overwhelming the Cambridge defence Le Marchand inside to Holmback strikes the ball form 20 yards her vicious effort blocked rebounds back out to O’Halloran to her right she fires in another shot, Mhundury having reacted to Holmback’s effort is unable to adjust getting a glove to the ball can’t keep it out at the near post 0-1.

  Holmback very influential in the early stages for Leyton Orient winning the ball in the middle Cambridge are struggling to get anything going, direct in their approach it is effective from the visitors Hirst and Le Marchand getting forwards quickly. A following attack from Leyton Orient as Le Marchand comes on with the ball left twists and turns coming in field laying the ball into Fulgence central held up the striker plays the ball back to Holmback who in turn has O’Halloran in support to her right giving her the ball O’Halloran has seen Le Marchand’s run into the box look to play the ball over the top of the Cambridge defence, just a little too much on it for Le Marchand to turn home as she can’t gather the ball before it runs out of play, a good attacking move.

Leyton Orient WFC’s, Lisa Holmback with Cambridge City’s, Sarah Mosley

   Trying to build going forwards Cambridge are frustrated nothing coming off, Kathryn Canavan and Francesca Cagetti both tackling to prevent crosses. Mills puts a ball in early from the left Charlotte Gillies out wide right gathers looks to send a cross in along the goal face Canavan blocking the ball behind for a corner. Leyton Orient deal with the Cambridge set-piece. Mills holds up the ball on the left wing as Tomlinson comes racing past her gathering the ball heads for the byline, Cagetti staying with her slides in to make the tackle.

Charlotte Gillies attacking for Cambridge City Ladies

    Le Marchand always ready to go on the left claims the ball turns and runs into the corner whips a great ball in across the face of the Cambridge goal no one there to turn it home. Fulgence comes deep to the halfway line to receive the ball, tries to flick it on for Le Marchand catch Cambridge with a high defensive line, Robyn Phillips does well making the challenge to prevent Le Marchand getting away with the ball. Shaw moving into the left channel gathers the ball tries to send it back inside towards Sofia Castiglione making a central run, McNee stepping out of the Leyton Orient back-line to deny her a strike.

  A good tempo the the match Leyton Orient controlling it is limiting Cambridge’s effectiveness going forwards play mostly to their left. Chances few and far between Shaw collecting from a throw on the left spins and shoots from the angle her shot half blocked deflected wide across Ogunde’s goal. A free-kick wide left for Cambridge in the corner played back up the line to Tomlinson she hits it hard, the only reason I know that is because Leyton Orient’s O’Halloran rushing towards her blocks it and needs treatment as a result. But she is okay to continue.

  GOAL! Closing in on the half hour and Leyton Orient double their lead. Le Marchand the scorer Leyton Orient counter attacking get the ball up front quickly central a difficult bouncing ball to deal with at the top of the area Le Marchand in close making thing’s difficult muscles her way past the defence the ball at her feet drives it low past Mhundury into the back of the net 0-2.

   Nothing Cambridge try will come off, Shaw looks to link up with Gillies on the right as Castiglione plays the ball forwards, Canavan getting hold of the ball setting Leyton Orient on the counter through the middle up to Le Marchand sweeps the pass out to Fulgence right side top of the area her strike goalwards claimed by Mhundury at her near post. Again Leyton Orient break from a Cambridge corner Le Marchand left firing a diagonal ball into Fulgence, Fay nipping in to push the ball away O’Halloran picks it up drives forwards top of the area looking for options over taking a shot tries to slip the ball in behind for Fulgence right can’t find her, the ball cleared only to Hirst wide right her cross in lands on the roof of the net.

Cambridge City Ladies, Amy Reed up against Leyton Orient’s, Sophie Le Marchand

    Reed defends up against Le Marchand as she tries to get inside her on the left in attack. Getting numbers forwards Leyton Orient press high. Sarah Mosley back to defend for Cambridge clears the long on the right Gillies giving chase, Hannah Porter getting across her does well to see the ball back to her keeper. Holmback fouled on halfway, Griffiths to play the ball long up towards the top of the Cambridge box, Fay with a commanding header clears the threat. Le Marchand with a strong run inside from the left into Fulgence back to goal attempts to flick it on into the box with Holmback making a good run doesn’t quite come off.

Leyton Orient WFC captain, Danielle Griffiths

  GOAL! 2 minutes of normal time left in the first half and Cambridge pull a goal back with their first shot on target. A superb run and goal from Laura Mills on the left picking the ball up wide left drives forwards coming infield towards the area rides two challenges powering her way into the box before striking the ball past the static Ogunde into the back of the goal 1-2. More or less the last goal mouth action before the end of the half.   

Laura Mills pulling it back to 21 late in the 1st half for Cambridge City.

Half-time Cambridge City Ladies 1-2 Leyton Orient WFC

  A vital goal for Cambridge City coming right at the end of the first half to pull it back to 2-1. Leyton Orient by far the better starting well and taking an early lead pressed the ball well, direct at times but effective, attacking quickly in numbers, Le Marchand in particular finding room using the ball well. Set the tempo and Cambridge struggled to get anything going their late goal altering thing’s dramatically going into the half-time break. All to play for 2nd half.

  No changes for either side Cambridge getting the 2nd half underway. Castiglione putting a ball long for Hannah Bodily to give chase to through the middle, dissecting the Leyton Orient defence, but not fooling Ogunde who is positioned well to gather. A blow to the head for McNee she needs treatment but can return to the pitch. O’Halloran with a shot well of the mark as Fulgence wins the header forwards knocking the ball into her 30 yards out. Shaw plays the ball out to Gillies deep on the right wing she is tackled by Canavan the throw-in conceded.

   GOAL! Cambridge equalise bringing the scores back level 5 minutes into the 2nd half the goal coming from the throw-in the ball crossed in along the top of the area Mills getting in front of her marker left side knocks the ball down sees Mosley in a great position 20 yards out lays the ball into her Mosley strikes the ball sweetly it flies in towards goal past Ogunde before she can get anything on it. 2-2.

   Tomlinson with an important interception getting her foot up to cut out a lofted ball forwards from midfield from Leyton Orient with Hirst all set to run clear in behind. The visitors with a golden chance to restore their lead Le Marchand running in on the ball played into her as she breaks in behind left, Mhundury coming out to close her down Le Marchand clever knocks the ball past her towards goal. Hirst is central inside the six yard box, can’t dig the ball out of her feet to get the shot away before Phillips closes her down makes the challenge.

    GOAL! Leyton Orient do succeed in retaking the lead the goal coming from a corner won by Le Marchand on the left as Griffiths sends the long diagonal pass out to her. Players forwards inside the box as the delivery is put in a great ball across the face of goal, O’Halloran clear at the far post nodding the ball in from close range to make it 2-3.

Tara O’Halloran heading the ball in from the corner

  Leyton Orient look to press their advantage coming forwards win a free-kick wide right inside the Cambridge half Griffiths to put the ball into the box good flight on the ball Mhundury is able to catch the ball unchallenged. Le Marchand with the ball, draws the foul wide left this time another good ball into the area a crowd around the penalty spot a Leyton Orient head connects with the ball the attempt dropping wide of the far post. Leyton Orient make the first change of the match bringing on Lydia Cooper for Hirst on the right. Cooper involved straight away as Holmback plays the ball out to her on the wing she gives chase but a good starting position from Mhundury sees her able to gather the ball first. 

Leyton Orient WFC substitute, Lydia Cooper trying to get in behind

  GOAL! Cambridge come back to equalise again 6 minutes after conceding they build on the right side Gillies having more of the ball 2nd half gets on down the line getting her foot around the ball sends a dipping cross into the six yard box, Shaw timing her run perfectly getting in to met the ball low and turn it into the back of the net from close range 3-3.

   Leyton Orient have a free-kick wide left. Cambridge make a change before it is taken Mosley coming off on comes Carla Penny taking up a role wide left. The free-kick played down the line the cross put in near post Fulgence can’t bring down for a shot instead lays it back towards the top of the box with McNee running in her strike wide across the goal.

  GOAL! For the 3rd time in the match Leyton Orient take the lead O’Halloran sending a long ball out to the left for Le Marchand to race onto in behind Mhundury comes racing out to close her down once again, the attacker taking on the shot early gets it in on target may have taken a slight deflection off the keeper as it runs slowly towards the open goal but despite the best efforts of the Cambridge defence none can catch up to it before it crosses the line 3-4.

Leyton Orient WFC’s, Sophie Le Marchand

Gillies with a long range pop sends a low strike from 30 yards out on the right wide across the Leyton Orient box. Mhundury gets down sharply inside her box to claim the ball as Leyton Orient create on the left the ball helped in by Fulgence, Holmback behind knocking the ball into the box as she looks to beat her marker. Griffiths across well on the cover to defend as Mills sends a ball long up the right for Shaw to chase the defender playing the ball safely back to her keeper.

  GOAL! For the 3rd time in the tie Cambridge come back for score the equaliser. Comes from a free-kick wide on the right the ball played up towards the top of the area several forwards for Cambridge. Blocked by Canavan the rebound runs back to Mills 25 yards out strikes the ball well on the angle driving it low across the keeper and into the far corner 4-4.

  Cambridge make a 2nd change Bella Simmons entering the action replacing Shaw up top. Leyton Orient bring off Canavan, send on Egle Trezzi. Tomlinson has bionic arms (maybe) nevertheless has a good long throw in her armoury when Cambridge can get her into an advanced position she offers an added threat gets the ball into Mills top of the area she turns inside closely marked plays the ball on, Griffiths intercepting hooks the ball clear for Leyton Orient. 

Carla Penny bringing the ball under control for Cambridge City.

Up the other end Tomlinson gets back in support of Fay as her captain is muscled off the ball by Fulgence looking to turn and run in behind the fullback making a good challenge. The game naturally becoming a little stretched late on both sensing they can score another, Leyton Orient feed Le Marchand on the left driving down the wing squares the ball in near post Fulgence with the run is closed down by Mhundury the keeper doing enough as Fulgence puts the ball wide.

Lauren Tomlinson winning the ball for Cambridge City

   Tomlinson with another chance to deliver a long throw Leyton Orient wary of the threat the ball comes in Gillies gets her head on it directs the attempt wide of goal. A free-kick wide left for Leyton Orient, Griffiths to play the ball in sends it long across the six yard box no one gets a head on it as it runs out of play far post. A final change for Leyton Orient in attack, off comes Fulgence replaced by Jade Henry. Le Marchand always ready to break in behind off the shoulder of the last defender on the left the ball long up to her Mhundury comes again, Le Marchand shoots, the keeper making the save with her legs as she jumps in front of the attacker.

   GOAL! Cambridge take the lead for the first time in the tie! The game stretched in the closing minutes Leyton Orient pressing Tomlinson gathering the ball at left back sees space open up in front of her goes on a brilliant run carrying the ball 3 quarters of the pitch up the left crossing from the byline a fizzing effort racing across the face of goal, Simmons sliding in at the far post turns the ball in at close range 5-4.

Scorer of Cambridge City Ladies, 5th goal Bella Simmons holding the ball up

  For the first time in the game Leyton Orient are behind with minutes left on the clock push forwards attacking left side the cross swung in Henry with the knock down near side to Le Marchand top of the area she puts her foot through the ball but can’t keep the effort down as it flies over the crossbar. It’s all about composure now Cambridge are looking to seeing it out the adrenaline pumping not an easy thing to do into stoppage time Leyton Orient come on can find no reply as Cambridge complete a memorable result to win the match.

  Full time Cambridge City Ladies 5-4 Leyton Orient WFC

  What a game! That 2nd half was something else I’m perhaps the only neutral there but how can you not be emotive watching games like that. Cambridge coming back to equalise 3 times in the match before going on to score what proved to be the winning goal themselves to advance in the FA Women’s Cup. Showed good character to keep coming back were lacklustre in the first half not getting anything going but never out of the tie. Leyton Orient will be deflated, can only be so after taking the lead 4 times in the match and failing to go on and win it going behind themselves with so little time left. 

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

  On to this afternoon’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match. Several good performances from both sides, Le Marchand excellent for Leyton Orient a threat all game, Holmback in the middle especially 1st half, O’Halloran too. Tomlinson was excellent at left back for Cambridge and a great run and cross for what proved to be the winning goal. It was another goal that changed the course of this tie however and that was Cambridge’s first coming so late in the 1st half was vital pulling it back to 2-1 was so critical gave Cambridge that belief, and for that plus another and an assist today’s Player of the Match award goes to Laura Mills.

   What an exciting game to watch a privilege and it’s why I love the sport so much. My thanks to both managers for their help with the teams and Cambridge City for their hospitality. Thanks to for the weather a bright sunny afternoon after such a dismal start a welcome bonus. 

The Round-Up – Beds & Herts 16/09/18

The Round-Up

Sunday 16th September

Beds & Herts Women’s Division One

A busy Sunday in the Beds & Herts Women’s Football League with 26 of the 28 teams in action. Houghton Athletic Ladies are the early pacesetters in Division One as they made it 2 wins from 2 at the start of their league campaign. Building an a 3-2 win over Northwood Ladies on the opening weekend were away this Sunday taking on league newcomers Hemel Hempstead Town Ladies. Stacey McConville scoring twice for the home side, Emily Wilson scoring a hat-trick for Houghton adding to her opening day brace. Emily Peat also with a goal on the opening day adding another to her tally as Houghton Athletic took the 3 points home with a 4-2 result.

   Sharnbrook WFC winning on the opening day were away to Northwood Ladies on Sunday the points shared the sides contesting a 1-1 draw, Northwood with their 1st point of the season scoring through Danielle Tyler. Emma Butler’s goal ensuring Sharnbrook stay unbeaten.

   Garston Ladies 2nd XI promoted to Division One having clinched the Division Two title last season began their campaign this Sunday away to Sherrardswood Ladies who were also kicking off for the first time this season. Was a winning start of Garston’s 2nd XI too winning thanks to a brace from Charley Kelsey and a goal for Leah Crocket 3-1 the final score.

   Also getting their season started on Sunday were newly promoted Welwyn Pegasus Sapphires away to Garston Ladies 1st team. Short on numbers Welwyn nevertheless started the season with a win scoring twice without reply to get life in the higher league up and running. Garston with two unwelcome defeats to start the season.

Defending Champions St Albans Ladies will finally begin their season this coming Sunday away to Garston Ladies 1st team.

Beds & Herts Women’s Division Two

Everyone is off the mark in Beds & Herts Division Two all the sides in action this Sunday. Hitchin Town Ladies top of the pile with 2 wins from 2 at the start of the season victory coming for the 2nd successive game courtesy of a single goal. Were playing the Hitchin derby this Sunday away to Hitchin Belles. Louise Gash’s goal the difference between the sides securing the win for Hitchin Town. 

 Promoted as Champions and Runners-Up in Division Three last season, Bedford Ladies Development and Wheathamstead Wanderers met this Sunday in Division Two, Bedford winning their opening league fixture remaining unbeaten whilst Wheathamstead earn a point from their opening league fixture with the sides drawing 0-0.

Another local derby on Sunday saw the two Evergreen clubs go toe to toe in Division Two, Evergreen Ladies promoted away to Evergreen Eagles. Goals from Rebecca Freeman and Amy Reynolds seeing Evergreen Ladies win for the 1st time this season Evergreen Eagles starting with defeat.

    Drawing their opening league match last Sunday 2-2 with Hitchin Belles, Royston Town Ladies Development were on their travels on Sunday taking on Letchworth Garden City Eagles. Goals for Kate Tempest and Amy Macklen for Letchworth as they kicked off their season not enough to take anything from the game as Royston edged the result winning 3-2 Megan Evers netting twice with Amie Jones also getting a goal.

   Relegated to Division Two Watton Ladies had started the season with a lost going down 4-2 to Bedford Ladies Development. Were at home to another promoted side this Sunday, Welwyn Pegasus Azures. Senal Chapman scoring for the visitors Watton scoring 3 goals to get their 1st win on the board for over a year. Grace Bickell with a brace with Elizabeth Downton also on target in the 3-1 win for Watton.

Beds & Herts Women’s Division Three

Biggleswade United Ladies have started the season well in Beds & Herts Women’s Division Three, built on a 2-0 opening day win away to Kempston Rovers Ladies with a big home win over Bedwell Rangers Ladies this Sunday. Biggleswade’s first home game they were in fine form in front of goal Leeanne Davison scoring a hat-trick, further goals coming from Georgina Fury, Sarah King, captain Vikki Ranson, Rebecca Fury and Tashai Simms in an 8 win. 10 goals without reply a perfect start for the former Shefford Town & Campton Ladies side.

   Both new to the league Stotfold Juniors Ladies and AFC Dunstable Ladies Reserves began life with opening day wins, meeting this weekend they both remain unbeaten having to settle for a point each after playing out a 2-2 draw. Laura Brooker and Bianca Vassell scoring for Dunstable.

   Two more new sides met this Sunday for their 2nd league matches having lost on the opening day. Langford Ladies hosting Buntingford Town Ladies. Danielle Vince netting a hat-trick for Langford with further goals coming from Rebecca Reeve and a brace for Chloe Scott seeing the home side seal a 6-2 win. Kirsty Frampton and Leah Casali getting on the scoresheet for Buntingford Town.

   Woburn & Wavendon Lionesses are fielding just one women’s side this season began their campaign this Sunday at home taking on Kempston Rovers Ladies. A brace from Georgia Payne along with a goal each for Victoria Harold and Laura Johnson seeing Woburn start with victory in Division Three the final score 4-2, Meghan Dimmock and Anjali Ram getting the goals for Kempston Rovers. 

The Round-Up – Essex 16/09/18

The Round-Up

Sunday 16th September

Essex Women’s Premier Division

The Essex Women’s Premier Division kicked off last Sunday with a couple of fixtures another 4 sides getting their league campaign started this weekend. A big win to start the season too for Corringham Cosmos as they travelled to play Brentwood Town Ladies Reserves promoted from Division One. Taking a 6-0 lead into the half-time break Corringham Cosmos were in control of the game for much of the 2nd half finishing with a 9-1 win. A 1st half hat-trick for Rebecca Gallagher. Chloe Brown, Madison Hubbard and Michelle Sumpter also getting off the mark in the first 45. 3 more goals coming midway through the 2nd half, Sumpter getting her 2nd of the game with Rachel Fleming and Milly Thompson also on target.

Both Beacon Hill Rovers Ladies and newly promoted Leigh Ramblers Ladies started the season with an opening day loss. With an FA Women’s Cup game away to Histon Ladies coming up this Sunday Leigh Ramblers got a confidence boosting 1st league win of the season scoring twice in each half to win the game 4-1. Rebecca Dalgarno, Emily Diwell, Sasha Vail and Paige White with their goals. Jo Smeaton scoring in the 2nd half for Beacon Hill Rovers.

   It was a point a piece for Chelmsford City Ladies and Hullbridge Sports Ladies as they met for their first league game of the season. Drawing 1-1 at half-time they couldn’t be separated come 90 minutes despite scoring 4 more goals 3-3 the final score. Mia Brisley, Rosie Coe and Shannon Kelly opening their accounts. Last season’s Division One Champions, Hullbridge Sports earning a point from their opening Premier Division game with Natalie Sandford on target along with a brace for Lauren Tate. 

Essex Women’s Division One

Three weeks into the season in Essex Women’s Division One and at last all of the 11 sides are up and running. A fine start to the season from FC Clacton Ladies are leading the table after this weekends results, unbeaten in their 3 matches. A narrow home win coming this Sunday against Runwell Sports Ladies. 1-0 up at half-time needed a 2nd goal to ensure the 3 points after Aaryanna Simonelli netted for Runwell Sports, goals from Daisy Canny and Becky McDougall seeing FC Clacton move to the top of the table.

Chelmsford City Ladies Reserves were hosting Dagenham & Redbridge Ladies on Sunday both in action in the league for the 1st time this season and it was a great start for the visitors with Dagenham & Redbridge Ladies running out 7-0 winners. Amy Jacobs opening her season with a 4 goal haul. Grace Tebb-Reading scoring twice with Megan Duffield also opening her account.

   A first win of the season for Chigwell Ladies on Sunday playing their 3rd match of the season away to newcomers Belhus Ladies. Amber Pinney and Hannah Robinson scored for the hosts, Chigwell breaching their defence for 5 goals up the other end to claim a 5-2 victory. Both Caitlin Hynes and Victoria Parker scoring a brace with Jessica MacNab also celebrating a goal.

Essex Women’s County Cup

Two ties from the 1st Round of the Essex Women’s County Cup played this Sunday and upsets in both with the higher league opponents knocked out. South End United Ladies were playing their 1st competitve match of the season hosting Bowers & Pitsea Ladies the ERWFL Division One side already a month into their season. A strong first half for Bowers & Pitsea albeit with just the one goal to show for it scored by Georgia Fraser. A flurry of goals in a 10 minute spell early in the 2nd half seeing Southend United come back from a goal down to level on 52 minutes, 2 minutes later they had the lead a 3rd goal coming on 60 minutes. Bowers & Pitsea responding quickly got one goal back straight away Fraser scoring again to make it 3-2 but another goal wouldn’t come as Southend United held on for the win. An away tie in the 2nd Round against Harlow Town Ladies Reserves to come for Southend United on Sun 21st October.

   Also playing their 1st competitve match of the season were Silver End United Ladies, the Essex Women’s Premier Division side hosting Division One side Rayleigh Town Ladies. A confident start to their league campaign with 2 wins from 2 Rayleigh carried that form into the County Cup, captain Isabella Wallings scoring a hat-trick for the 2nd time this season already. Megan Harley hitting a brace with Eleasha Reeves also on target to see Rayleigh Town through to the 2nd Round with a 6-2 win. Angela Holden with a penalty and Toni Brown scoring for Silver End United. Rayleigh Town will be away in the 2nd Round on Sun 21st October taking on Brentwood Town Ladies Reserves. 

The Round-Up – Cambridgeshire 16/09/18

The Round-Up

Sunday 16th September

Cambridgeshire Women’s Premiership

 Two wins out of two to start the Cambridgeshire Women’s Premiership season for Cambridge City Ladies Development followed up last weekends opening day win over Histon Ladies Reserves with another away victory over another of the newly promoted sides, Fulbourn Institute Bluebirds. 6-0 in their 1st game it was a much closer affair this time around. A good start for Cambridge City Emily Reed firing the visitors into the lead after 2 minutes. Lucy Hurst striking from 25 yards to make it 2-0 in the 11th minute. Were 3-0 to the good just 2 minutes later with Megan Tonks getting the goal. Katie Luddy pulling it back to 3-1 for Fulbourn midway through the 2nd half. Cambridge City scoring again late in the first half to have a 4-1 advantage Tonks getting her 2nd of the game. Fulbourn far from out of it threatened a comeback 2nd half Marie Stubbings and Kirsty Geal pulling it back to 4-3. Cambridge City held out to claim the 3 points. Two games two 4-3 losses for Fulbourn.

   Also beginning the Premiership season with two wins out of two are ICA Sports Ladies. 2-0 at Riverside Ladies on the opening day were at home this Sunday taking on March Town United Ladies playing their 1st competitive match of the season. Several new players lining up for March United. Elle Nutter scoring their 1st goal of the season, it was ICA Sports who had their noses in front at the break with Donna Nicholls scoring twice. Nicholls completing her hat-trick in the 2nd half t seal a 3-1 victory.

ICA Sports Ladies, Donna Nicholls

A heavy defeat for Histon Ladies Reserves on the opening day of the season were at home again this Sunday taking on Netherton United Ladies who started the season with a 4-3 win over Fulbourn. Just a single goal settling this game and it went the way of the hosts as Histon Ladies Reserves got their 1st 3 points on the board.

Cambridgeshire Women’s Championship North

One game played in the Cambridgeshire Women’s Championship North on Sunday the Wisbech derby with Wisbech St Mary hosting Wisbech Town. Both sides recording big wins on the opening day of the season. It was once again a high scoring game ending up with an emphatic win for the visitors, Wisbech Town netting 7 times against their rivals, new signings Amy Newell and Aisling Ryan netting on their debuts. There were goals too for Sophie Swindon, Chloe Stanborough, Emma Woods, Kaylie Swindon and captain Faye Kowalewsky. The final score 7-1 Megan Radcliffe with the consolation goal for Wisbech St Mary.

Cambridgeshire Women’s Championship South

A good start to the season in the Championship South for new side Haverhill Rovers Ladies, winning 5-2 on the opening day away to St Ives Town Ladies Development recorded a 2nd successive win at home for the 1st time this season taking on Burwell Tigers Ladies. Joeli Kirby scoring a hat-trick for Haverhill Rovers with Abbi Griffin and Emma Barnes both scoring their 1st goals for the club in a 5-0 win.

  St Ives Town Ladies Development bounced back from an opening day loss to win their 1st game of the season away to Isleham United Ladies on Sunday. The hosts starting with a 6-1 win themselves over Park Ladies scored twice in the game, a brace from Lauren Gibson along with a goal each for Fran Worrall, Connie Liddiard and Jade Carpenter securing a 5-2 win for St Ives.

The Round-Up – Suffolk 16/09/18

The Round-Up

Sunday 16th September

Suffolk Women’s Division

 A full programme of fixtures in the Suffolk Women’s Division this Sunday with 12 of the 13 sides in action continuing on from last Sunday’s opening weekend. Needham Market Women are the early pacesetters 2 wins from 2 and a double figure goal average to boot. The newly formed side beginning the season with a 9-1 away to fellow newcomers Chantry Grasshoppers Ladies last Sunday were at home for the first time this season taking on Coplestonians Ladies. Milly Carter top scoring for Needham Market with 5 goals in the game adding to her opening day hat-trick. Francesca Rainbird joining Needham Market from Bacton United scoring a hat-trick to add to her opening day brace. Lois Balfour also with Bacton last season scored a hat-trick last time out added another goal this Sunday whilst Isabel Chaplin opening her account for Needham Market by scoring a brace in an 11-0 win. A tough start for a new look Coplestonians side heavy defeats leaving them bottom of the table but very early stages yet.

  Talking of tough starts it wasn’t the start to life in the Women’s Division that the new University of Suffolk Women’s team were looking for the late entrants making their debut were away to an established Leiston St Margarets Ladies side on Sunday. A 2-1 win away to Brightlingsea Regent Ladies on the opening day Leiston St Margarets were too strong in front of goal for their opponents on Sunday scoring a massive 17 goals to propel them into 2nd spot in the table. Michelle Stanborough finding the back of the net for 5 goals both Lucy Eagle and Thalia Cloke scored 4 goals each. A hat-trick for Grace Pemberton with Leanne Fairweather also getting on the scoresheet with a goal.

 Also 2 wins out of 2 to start the season for last seasons unbeaten Champions, East Bergholt United Ladies. Were hosting newcomers Brightlingsea Regents Ladies on Sunday. The goals shared out amongst the squad Annie Northwood claiming a brace, Charlotte McGrath, Georgia Lockerbie, Stacey Teager, Charlotte Warren and Millie Wilding all getting a goal each in an 8-0 win.

   Starting life in the Suffolk Women’s Division with a 4-1 loss away to Brantham Athletic Ladies on the opening weekend, Alresford Colne Rangers were at home this Sunday for the first time taking on Brettvale Ladies, one of this season’s newcomers. Alresford recording their first win of the season Jo Harvey striking a brace, with a goal each for Tiffany Reeves and Bethany Smith to see them win 4-0. 

   Two of the league newcomers came together on Sunday, Haverhill Rovers Ladies Reserves playing their 1st ever competitive match were the hosts taking on Chantry Grasshoppers Ladies who began the season with a heavy 9-1 to Needham Market. Were 11 goals in this Sunday’s match too Chantry Grasshoppers with the lions share however to claim their 1st league win, Haverhill Rovers getting 3 goals in their opening fixture, Chantry Grasshoppers though hitting 8 up the other end Bernice Corney netting a hat-trick, the other goalscorers getting off the mark were Charlotte Archer, Shannon Cameron and Lucy Robson with Kiera Hines the scorer of Chantry Grasshoppers 1st ever goal also adding to the tally.

   Also getting there season started this Sunday were Walsham Le Willows Ladies which is a month sooner than they started their league campaign last time around, always playing catch up then started this season on a positive note on the road against Woodbridge Town Ladies a goalless 1st half, two goals from Laura Brame the difference in the 2nd half as Walsham Le Willows began the season with a 2-0 win. 

 

The Round-Up – Norfolk 16/09/18

The Round-Up

Sunday 16th September

Norfolk Women’s Division One

Early days in the Norfolk season beginning the 2nd weekend a handful of games played in Division One, a good start to the campaign for Thorpe United Ladies though as they make it 2 wins from 2 to start the season to go top of the fledgling table. A 2-1 home win over last season’s Champions, Bungay Town Ladies on opening weekend was another 2-1 success on the road this time around against Gorleston FC Ladies who themselves had started the season with a 2-0 away to Sprowston Ladies. Goalless in the first half at Emerald Park, goals from Rebekah Lake and Aneliese Smith the difference for Thorpe United as they clinched a 2nd successive win, Mary Croft on target for Gorleston.

   Beccles Town Ladies had started their life in Division One with a 4-2 loss away to a reformed Aylsham Ladies on the opening weekend. Were at home this Sunday taking on Wymondham Town Ladies beginning their season. Beccles coming out on top by the odd goal in five the sides drawing 1-1 at the break Beccles going on to claim their first 3 point haul with a 3-2 victory. The goals scored by Francesca Heaney along with a brace for Lucy Robbens.

Norfolk Women’s Division Two

Another high scoring weekend in Norfolk Women’s Division Two as sides begin to find there feet in the league. 3 sides maintaining a 100% winning start to the season. Bure Valley Wildcats starting with a massive 17-0 win last Sunday against newcomers Bulldogs Ladies were again taking on Thetford opposition with a trip to Thetford Town Ladies who themselves had begun the season with victory. A 2-0 advantage for Bure Valley at the break, Thetford suffering from a couple of injuries 2nd half as Bure Valley went on to take full control of the game winning 8-1, had 4 players each claiming a brace Kiera Brown, Charlie Cooper, Juliette Kelly and Carrie Last. Chloe Bentick getting the consolation goal for Thetford Town.

   A 4-0 win over Tavern Ladies at home for Fakenham Town Ladies on the opening weekend of the season, were on the road for the 1st trip of the season this Sunday up against Bulldogs Ladies. An eventful game having been beaten 17-0 in their opening fixture Bulldogs bounced back well taking a 3-1 lead in the match before Fakenham mounted a comeback and went on to win the game 8-4. Two penalties in the match. Emma Johnson netting a hat-trick for Bulldogs Ladies, so too did Fanny Danskanen for Fakenham with Sam King scoring twice, Sian Sands the other goalscorer plus and own goal.

   Long Stratton Women also starting their season with 2 wins from 2 are 3rd in the Division Two table, a goal feast away to Gorleston Rangers Ladies on the opening weekend seeing Long Stratton win 9-5. Were at home this Sunday entertaining new side Hockering Ladies as they got their season underway. Long Stratton getting the result courtesy of a brace from Samantha Walker along with a goal each for Emily Watts and Beth Stratton. 4-0 the final score.

  Tavern Ladies turned thing’s around this Sunday to record their first win of the season at home having lost away in their opening fixture 4-0 against Fakenham Town Ladies. Taking on Freethorpe Ladies who had earned a point in their opening fixture. Tavern too strong for their opponents this Sunday, captain Sophie Fuller scoring 4 goals in the game their were also strikes from Katie Hart-Copsey, Alanta Griffith and Lucy Kean as the Dereham side ran out 7-0 winners

Tavern Ladies captain, Sophie Fuller

  Taverham Women began life in Norfolk Women’s Division Two with a goalless draw away to Freethorpe Ladies on the opening weekend. Were on home turf for the first time this Sunday hosting Gorleston Rangers Ladies. A comfortable first half saw Taverham into a 4-0 lead went on to double that score 2nd half to win match 8-1. Abbie Walker top scoring for Taverham opening her account with 5 goals. Rebecca Sutton beginning with a brace with Maya Lawlor also scoring. Lauren Dennis with the goal for Gorleston Rangers.

The Round-Up – ERWFL 16/09/18

The Round-Up

Sunday 16th September

ERWFL Premier Division

New leaders in the ERWFL Premier Division after this weekends results, Cambridge City Ladies go top making it 3 wins from 3 in the league to start the season. Up against Bedford Ladies who themselves were unbeaten at the start of the season with a win and 3 draws. A strong 1st half from Cambridge City seeing the lead 3-0 at the break, Laura Mills getting on the end of the ball to turn it over the line was quickly 2-0 with Bella Simmons scoring, further chances followed before Sofia Castiglione scored to make it 3-0. Bedford were far from out of the game however and 2 goals for Setor Acolatse pulled it back to 3-2 for the visitors, the woodwork saving Cambridge City at the end as they dug deep for the 3 points.

  Acle United Women were the previous leaders of the Premier Division drop to 2nd after suffering their first loss of the season away to Royston Town Ladies. Paige Rolfe making her 100th appearance for Royston. The dead lock broken on the half hour Sammy Tinsley striking from the edge of the box to give Royston the lead. A 1-0 advantage at half-time. Acle got the scores back to 1-1 just before the hour summer signing Grace Parker netting from a free-kick. Royston coming back to retake the lead in the final 15 minutes one of their summer signings Charlotte South from AFC Dunstable Ladies making it 2-1 and with Acle chasing a 2nd equaliser Royston scored a 3rd with South on target once again 2 wins from 2 for Royston to start their league campaign.

   Harlow Town Ladies newly promoted to the ERWFL Premier Division their 4th promotion in a row are up to 3rd after home success over Colney Heath Ladies on Sunday. And it was to The Harlow Arena Women’s Football East travelled on Sunday to watch. An unbeaten start to the season for Colney Heath Ladies as they begin their 2nd season in the Premier Division. Got off to the better start the ball played up to Rianne Townsend-Brown at the top of the area, showed her strength against the Harlow defence to muscle her way in on goal and send the ball home to put Colney Heath 1-0 up. Harlow had chances to equalise, Lily Bruno seeing Amy Mullett making a good save in goal for Colney Heath low to her left. The equaliser coming midway through the first half Colney Heath failing to deal with a free-kick put into the area Abbey Dell getting onto the ball and sending it home. 1-1 the score at half-time.

  A totally different story 2nd half as Harlow came out the stronger, injuries affecting Colney Heath’s defence, Harlow nevertheless started well. Tayla Handscombe linking with Bruno as she attacks do the left into the box and smashes the shot in to put Harlow 2-1 up. It quickly becomes 3-1 from a corner the ball cleared only as far as Kirsty Woodacre the central defender 20 yards out moves out to the right a gap opening up inside the area she takes the opportunity to strike her shot finding the bottom corner to make it 3-1. Harlow are dominant keep coming forwards get a 4th goal with a good attacking move the ball laid into Kaydee King moving across the top of the area the Harlow captain scoring Harlow winning 4-1. A few bruises to show for their efforts Abbey Dell coming off worse in a collision with Colney Heath’s Sophie Joseph, a blow to the noggin, out for the count momentarily, Joseph the first to her aid she is back with us a moment later but I caught the fall, whether Dell remembers it or not is another but she was up and walking thankfully soon after.

Out for the count, Abbey Dell is floored after coming together with Sophie Joseph

  A 2nd win of the season for Wymondham Town Ladies sees them up to 4th in the Premier Division following promotion as Division One North Champions last season. Were at home to AFC Sudbury Ladies on Sunday who travelled with the bare 11. It was Sudbury who took the lead in the match Ceri Harris with the strike to make it 1-0. Wymondham coming back to win the game 2-1, Mollie O’Callaghan with the equaliser in the 63rd minute. Alice Ladbrooke netting the winning goal to secure the win.

   A good result at home for Brentwood Town Ladies on Sunday recording their 2nd win of the season, the Essex side hosting AFC Dunstable Ladies. Goals from Danielle Butler and a brace for Georgia Holdaway securing the 3 points with a 3-0 win.

  A first win of the season in the ERWFL Premier Division for Peterborough Northern Star Ladies since moving across from the EMWFL. Building on their 1st point of the season last weekend travelled south to play bottom side Haringey Borough Women on Sunday. Cassie Steward scoring a brace their were goals to for Paige Jones, Emma Pollard and Katie Steward as Northern Star wrapped up a 5-0 win.     

ERWFL Division One

New arrivals to the ERWFL, Newmarket Town Ladies are beginning to find their feet in the league, unbeaten in two they made it 3 at home with a good win over the league leaders Stevenage Ladies Reserves on Sunday ending their 100% record in the process. A result that certainly raises the eyebrows Stevenage have proved hard to beat over the last 18 months or so. Goals from Laura Bailey, Sarah O’Rourke, Antonia Smith, Brooke Wickens and Bethany Woodfield returning from injury seeing Newmarket win the game 5-0 lifting them up to 5th in the Division One table.

   Hutton Ladies climb into 2nd spot in ERWFL Division One with a comfortable away victory over Hertford Town Ladies on Sunday. New signing Victoria Kinsman in fine goal scoring form at the start of the season claiming a hat-trick against Hertford moved her into double figures already! Rosi Webb another new signing also getting on the scoresheet her 4th off the season. Hutton winning 4-0.

   Hoddesdon Town Owls Ladies left it late to claim a share of the points on the road at the weekend, were taking on Hatfield Peverel Ladies who themselves new to the ERWFL finally claimed their 1st point at this level on Sunday. Christa Osman with the goal for Hatfield to give them the lead. Hoddesdon had chances but it wasn’t until the final 5 minutes that they found the equaliser, Kristina O’Connell netting her 5th goal of the season on 85 minutes to make it 1-1.

  St Ives Town Ladies newly promoted to the ERWFL remain unbeaten at the start of the season holding on for a point away to fellow Cambridgeshire side Histon Ladies on Sunday. Goals from Tierney Coulson and Hannah Seymour-Shove saw St Ives Town into a 2-0 lead at half-time. Histon were right back into the game early in the 2nd half Kaya Haq scoring just a minute into the restart with Sophie Lanham scoring straight from a corner 3 minutes later for her first goal of the season. St Ives Town ending with 10 after Coulson was red carded dug deep to get the point.

   Games featuring King’s Lynn Town this season are going to be entertaining if not good for the managers health as for the 2nd time in just 4 matches they run out 5-3 winners! At home on the opening day of the season against Newmarket, 2 losses followed before they got back to winning ways away to Ipswich Wanderers Ladies this Sunday. The victory secured in the 2nd half. Jade Horne with a double along with a goal for Daisy Starsmoore  both getting off the mark for the season for Ipswich Wanderers. Jodie Hopkins-Duckhouse netted a hat-trick for King’s Lynn with fellow strikers Tiffany Forshaw and Oksana Imanalijeva also claiming a goal each.

The Round-Up – FAWNL 16/09/18

The Round-Up

Sunday 16th September

FAWNL Southern Premier Division

New leaders at the top of the FAWNL Southern Premier Division after this weekends results. Coventry United Ladies coming out on top in the clash between the top two and only unbeaten sides in the league on Sunday. A brilliant start to the season for Chichester City Ladies 4 wins out of 4 including a 2-1 home success against local rivals Portsmouth FC Women in midweek were back at home this Sunday hosting Coventry United Ladies who themselves looking to defend an unbeaten start to their league campaign 3 successive wins after a goalless draw on the opening day. 

  Coventry coming into their top of the table clash with a 4-0 home win over early pacesetters Loughborough Foxes Women. Coventry opening the scoring through a Jade Brook strike in the 8th minute, Chichester responded straight away to get back on level terms Cherelle Khassel making it 1-1. Coventry edging the win in the 2nd half Brook netting again in what would prove to be the winning goal. The 2-1 result taking Coventry top, Chichester City tasting defeat for the 1st time this season.

  Chichester City drop to 3rd in the Southern Premier Division table after the weekends results as Watford FC Ladies go 2nd on the back of 4 straight wins in all competitions. Needed a late winner to edge out QPR in midweek, 2-1 the final score. And it was a late show again to secure the 3 points again on Sunday away to Portsmouth FC Women. The hosts taking the lead in the 16th minute, Daisy McLachlan smashing the ball home. Katie O’Leary equalising for Watford just 5 minutes later the sides were all square at the break. 

  With 20 minutes left to play Portsmouth got themselves back into the lead Hannah Geer making it 2-1. Watford responded once again bringing on Anaisa Harney the substitute heading in visitors 2nd equaliser for her first goal for the club on 79 minutes, then Harney struck again to put Watford into the lead with 5 minutes left, Helen Ward scoring late on in midweek finding the back of the net in the 89th minute to secure the 3 points for Watford winning 4-2. 3 straight losses in the league now for Portsmouth after winning their opening 2 fixtures, Shannon Albuery leaving to join FAWSL side Yeovil Town Ladies.

   Another side showing great form are Cardiff City Ladies moving up to 4th in the Southern Premier Division with a 4th straight win in all competitions. Were hosting Loughborough Foxes Women this Sunday, the visitors holding a 1-0 advantage at the break with Kate Lowder the player on target with the goal on 31 minutes. A strong finish to the game from Cardiff to come back and win, closing in on the final quarter hour Grace Horrell scored to level the scores, soon after Cardiff were in the lead a corner scramble resulting in an own goal. Kelly Issac making sure of the win getting on the scoresheet in the 88th minute. Loughborough hitting the post from a penalty kick in stoppage time. 3-1 Cardiff.

   Goals galore at Elberton Villa FC between Plymouth Argyle Ladies and C&K Basildon Ladies. A much needed point earned last Sunday, Basildon travelling down to the South West having lost at home to Gillingham in midweek. Plymouth not in action in midweek. Goals from Helen Bleazard and Kayley Lane seeing Plymouth leading 2-0 at half-time. The lead further extended in the 2nd half with Amber Pollock making it 3-0 on 64 minutes. Bleazard with her 2nd of the game scoring to make it 4-0 on 68. Basildon weren’t out of it though getting it back to 4-2 before conceding a penalty, captain Katie Middleton sending the ball past the keeper to make it 5-2. Time for Basildon to get a 3rd goal but they went home empty handed the 5-3 win taking Plymouth up to 5th in the table. A goal for Raquel Murray along with a double for Patricia Gomez the goalscorers for Basildon.

   A mixed set of results for Oxford United Women, back to back losses in the league coming into this Sunday’s game including a 3-1 home loss to Milton Keynes Dons on Tuesday. Away to Gillingham FC Ladies this Sunday, Oxford recorded their biggest win of the season so far. Ellie Noble putting the visiting side 1-0 up on 23 minutes, Sophie Baker striking right on the stroke of half-time to give Oxford a 2-0 advantage. 3 more goals coming in the last 15 minutes Florence Fyfe a 2nd half substitute scoring to make it 3-0 on 77 minutes. Lauren Haynes was on target 4 minutes later to break up the 4th goal with Madelene Robertson also introduced in the 2nd half getting Oxford’s 5th goal in stoppage time.

  Milton Keynes Dons Ladies finally got off the mark in the Southern Premier Division recording their 1st win at this level in midweek away to Oxford United Women. On the road again this Sunday taking on bottom side Queens Park Rangers Ladies. Not much in it 1st half Kerry Newman getting a goal just past the half hour to put Milton Keynes Dons into the lead. Going down to a late winner in midweek, QPR scored themselves late on this time to rescue a point their 1st of the season, Rochelle Shakes with her 1st goal for the club. 

FAWNL South East Division One

    The promoted sides keeping on winning in FAWNL South East Division One, 5 wins out of 5 for both Crawley Wasps Ladies and Billericay Town Ladies. Crawley Wasps out in front having scored 24 now in their 5 games a 5-2 win in midweek away to AFC Wimbledon Ladies, Crawley Wasps were away to Stevenage Ladies this Sunday who themselves earned a point in midweek drawing 1-1 at The Abbey Stadium with Cambridge United WFC. The goals continuing for Crawley Wasps at the weekend 4 in the first half from Sian Heather, Kemina Webber, Faye Rabson and Megan Stow to put the visitors 4-1 up at half-time. Stow struck her 2nd of the game early in the 2nd half with Suzy Davies and Naomi Cole both scoring in the final 15 minutes to secure a 7-2 win for Crawley Wasps. Nicole Emmings with both goals for Stevenage.

   A much closer result at home for Billericay Town Ladies as the took on bottom side Luton Town Ladies still in search of their first points of the season. Lucy Jones and Samantha Pittuck with the goals for Billericay Town in a 2-1 with Dionne Manning finding the back of the net for Luton who came close to earning a point hitting the woodwork 3 times, a number of young players stepping up into their 1st team.

   A complete turn around for Actonians Ladies 3 defeats to start the season in all competitions, they have now made it 3 wins from their last 3 in the league to climb up to 3rd in the South East Division One table. Fortune in front of goal turned around too having conceded 12 in their 1st 3 matches have since scored 13 in 3 whilst conceding just twice a 5-0 win away to Denham in midweek. This Sunday were at home hosting Norwich City Ladies who themselves were on a high having secured their 1st win of the season against all sides their East Anglian derby rivals Ipswich Town Women. Norwich scoring twice in the 1st half Natasha Snelling and captain Kate Parsons with the goals Parsons 1st since her lengthy lay off from injury. Actonians were in front at the break however scoring 3 times in the 1st half. 3-2 up the hosts had the better of the 2nd half adding a further two goals to record a 5-2 win. Alessandra Barreca netting a hat-trick moving her onto 8 goals already this season with Jennifer Laidlaw and Sara Lopez Ezzahiri both getting their 1st goals of the season.

  Enfield Town Ladies are up to 4th in the South East Division One table coming out on top by the odd goal in 5 in the A10 derby between themselves and Cambridge United WFC. Is a long established rivalry between these two sides meaning form goes out the window whenever they meet. A narrow lead for Enfield at half-time with a late goal for Isabella Agus. Molly Peters set up by Agus scoring to make it 2-0 to Enfield, a chance to go 3-0 ahead from the penalty spot, Savannah Smith making the save for Cambridge off Nuala McKevitt. A free kick up the other end just outside the box in a dangerous position Amber Cantwell finding the back of the goal to make it 2-1. Cantwell striking from distance again to bring the scores level at 2-2. Enfield finding the winning goal with 7 minutes left on the clock Claire Ford from a corner heading in at the near post to seal a 3-2 win. 

  The points shared in the final two matches to bring you from South East Division One. Both losing in midweek Ipswich Town Women made the trip to Carshalton Athletic FC to play AFC Wimbledon Ladies on Sunday. Caroline Bisson with the shot scoring to put Wimbledon into the lead midway through the 2nd half, Ipswich responding well to the setback levelling the score just 4 minutes later the ball in the back of the net of a Wimbledon body from a Natalie Richardson free-kick. 1-1 at the break chances for both sides 2nd half but no more goals 1-1 it remained.

  1-1 too between Denham United Ladies and Leyton Orient WFC on Sunday but the visitors left it late to take home a point from the game after Rachel Keightley had given Denham the lead on 53 minutes. Rebecca Hirst introduced to the action from the bench on 80 minutes she netting her 1st goal of the season to earn 5th placed Leyton Orient a point.

Match Report – Harlow Town Ladies v Colney Heath Ladies

Sunday 16th September

ERWFL Premier Division

 A trip down to Essex this Sunday afternoon to watch a game from the ERWFL Premier Division, newly promoted Harlow Town Ladies hosting Colney Heath Ladies.

  A clash between the sides currently 4th and 5th in the table both with 4 points each, still very early days in the league however with several of the ERWFL Premier Division sides involved in the early qualifying rounds of the FA Women’s Cup.

   A 4th successive promotion for Harlow Town Ladies having risen through the Essex County leagues before clinching runners-up spot in ERWFL Division One South last season. A win, draw and loss from their opening 3 league matches in the Premier Division. Grant Palmer in charge of the 1st team for Harlow’s earlier successes has moved on to manage Norwich City Ladies in the FAWNL. A place in the FAWNL up for grabs for whoever wins ERWFL Premier Division title themselves. Dean Perrett in charge of the 1st team at Harlow now as the club look to continue to progress. A 1st team and Reserves side this season with ambition to create a girls section to establish Harlow as a force in the women’s game. 

   Colney Heath Ladies begin their 2nd season in the ERWFL Premier Division having finished runners-up in Division One to earn promotion. Was a difficult first campaign playing at that level, teams dropping out of the league which finished with 9 didn’t help their cause, ended bottom without a recorded win. The squad  stretched last season too have bolstered numbers for this season and added experience too, a much better start undefeated in their 4 matches played including a win and a draw in the Premier Division. 

  The Harlow Arena the venue for today’s game a superb facility that has hosted FAWSL 2 football in the past. An artificial playing surface a good sized pitch, overlooked by a large main stand along one side offering plenty of seating housing the changing rooms and clubhouse, bar and refreshments available. A smaller terraced stand opposite room to expand too. A pleasant sunny afternoon a stiff breeze blowing across the open ends of the ground.  

Harlow Town Ladies starting XI – Charlie Orwell, Courtney Miller, Megan Sende, Kirsty Woodacre, Nicole Learner, Chloe Bassett, Kaydee King (C), Abbey Dell, Poppy Binding & Lily Bruno. Subs – Tayla Handscombe, Rubie Smith, Liv Steele, Tegan Burling & Maisie Ryan.

Colney Heath Ladies starting XI – Amy Mullett (C), Kelly Hancock, Rebecca Fhalora, Annie Hickey, Lucy Hancock, Sophie Gardiner, Christina Freestone, Sheree Oliver, Sophie Joseph, Charlene Moreton & Rianne Townsend-Brown. Subs – Kelly Glynn, Adrienne Milton & Sarah Brennan.

(roll on roll off substitutes) 

   It’s Harlow to get the 1st half underway wearing red and white horizontal striped shirts with red shorts and socks with opponents Colney Heath lining up in blue shirts and shorts with white socks. The ball toing and froing in the middle of the park in the early stages Harlow attempting the 1st attack as captain Kaydee King wins possession inside the Colney Heath half and looks to sent the ball through for Abbey Dell on the left, a race for the ball across comes Kelly Hancock to slide in tackling Dell to put the ball out for a throw. 

The hosts with a chance to take the lead as the ball is pressed high up the pitch Dell has it on the left in towards Lily Bruno positioned at the top of the Colney Heath box left of the D plays it back to Poppy Binding central and turns into the area Binding returning the ball to Dell who has come infield plays the ball through to Bruno the striker is free having gotten herself across to the far post the Colney Heath defence static don’t react as Bruno shoots firing a shot back across goal wide of goalkeeper Amy Mullett but so too the post.

Colney Heath get the ball forwards rolled into Sheree Oliver central she puts the pass on for Christina Freestone ahead of her play switched to Rebecca Fhalora getting forwards on the left strikes the ball from outside the box her low effort running wide across the Harlow goal. The visitors make ground through the middle the ball played out to Rianne Townsend-Brown drifting right her cross blocked at close range by Chloe Bassett closing her down, a goal-kick the result.

Colney Heath Ladies, Rebecca Fhalora

   The referee spotting a shirt pull on Oliver, Colney Heath with a free-kick on the right 25 yards out from goal. The ball played up into the box, King with a firm header on the ball clears for Harlow. Nicole Learner bringing the ball on done the right for Harlow, Fhalora stepping in to make the tackle, the visitors build another attack moving the ball well, Moreton coming for the ball has options left and right aswell as Townsend-Brown ready to break in behind. Courtney Miller coming inside to cut out Moreton’s through ball.

Charlene Moreton with Harlow Town Ladies, Nicole Learner

Harlow bring the ball forwards with pace King linking up with Learner out to Farrell on the right wing a cross fired in low towards the near post Bruno arriving attempts to flick the ball on towards goal, instead it lands in the side netting. Binding lines up a strike from distance is charged down by Kelly Hancock, the rebound gathered by Binding she isn’t deterred has another go, Annie Hickey throwing out a leg to put in the block this time for Colney Heath. The game is a little physical but this is mainly down to which the pace the ball is being moved around Dell enjoying a good contest with her opposite number as she attacks on the left. 

GOAL! 12 minutes played and the visitors get themselves into the lead, Sophie Joseph on the ball central has Moreton in close attendance the ball into her put up towards the edge of the area, Townsend-Brown hustling the Harlow defence who don’t deal with the danger the Colney Heath striker strong gets hold of the ball bursting into the box and smashes a low shot across goal into the bottom corner 0-1.

 Harlow with a real chance to equalise straight away attacking up the other end the ball on the left fired inside into Learner outside the box she takes in on across the D is taken down as she goes to strike the ball, looked like it was inside the box but I’m on halfway the decision a free-kick a foot outside, a dangerous position, King over the ball lines up a strike, hitting the ball well it is always rising as it flies a half yard over the crossbar. 

  An open game both sides on the attack as soon as they have possession, Colney Heath have Oliver on the ball wide right squares the ball inside to Townsend-Brown, Kirsty Woodacre close in tackles to win the ball back for Harlow, counter attacking, Dell is given the ball on the left, tries to put the diagonal ball through towards Learner breaking forwards through the middle, can’t quite get there. The ball won in defence Colney Heath come forwards Oliver on the ball right plays it to Townsend-Brown central with Moreton ahead of her making a run into the area right of goal she receives the ball shoots, Charlie Orwell covering her near post is able to gather the ball for Harlow.

Sheree Oliver on the ball for Colney Heath Ladies

  Dell wins Harlow a corner on the left, a good delivery into the centre of the box the ball headed goalwards, a second Harlow header from close in the touch taking the ball over the bar. Amy Mullett is called into action making a fantastic save diving low to her left to deny Bruno as she is played through on goal as Harlow attack down the right Bassett on the ball, Bruno right off goal aiming for the bottom corner sees her shot saved. From the resulting corner, the ball played into the box, Dell can’t dig the ball out of her feet before Coley Heath close her down.

   Decisions going against Harlow frustration visible, a free-kick awarded left side 25 yards out, Moreton on the ball her strike wide of the far post. Hickey in to win the ball for Colney Heath the defender with a great ball realises Oliver who has been finding space on the right coming inside with the ball evades a couple of tackles on the top of the area before taking the ball inside, closing in on the near post she pulls the trigger but so close in Orwell has closed the door makes the blocking save. 

  Pressing the ball high up the pitch Harlow catch the Colney heath defence lingering on the ball Dell taking the ball wide out on the left fires a cross low and hard into the area, Bruno behind the ball near post top of the six yard box controls it enough to play back to Binding running in to the box central  shifts the ball as it comes into her and lets fly with a driven shot angling in towards goal, Mullett gets down quickly to her left to once more push the ball away behind to safety.

  GOAL! Harlow equalise midway through the 1st half the goal coming from a free-kick deep in the right players in the box as the ball is played up long into the area, dropping amongst bodies Colney Heath don’t deal with it Dell closest pouncing to smash the ball into the back of the net 1-1.

  Moments later Harlow come close to taking the lead, winning the ball back in the middle King with Bassett, the pass forwards finds Bruno left of the D, time to line up a shot, drags the attempt narrowly wide of the near post. Woodacre steps in to put the ball behind for a corner as Townsend-Brown tries to run onto a ball put into her from the left. Harlow try to break from the corner, Sophie Gardiner winning the ball back for Colney Heath. On another day Bruno would have a hat-trick in the bag by now as she shoots from 20 yards out the ball caught by Mullett before the striker sends another shot wide across goal from a similar position.

Chloe Bassett with the ball for Harlow Town Ladies

   A change for Harlow, Learner the player coming off, on in her place is Rubie Smith. The home side counter Bassett playing a one two with Bruno as she carries the ball forwards on the right going on to the byline sends a cross in towards the near post Hickey cutting the ball out concedes the corner. Moreton is brought down by Dell, a free-kick wide right for Colney Heath, Megan Sende defending for Harlow as Gardiner plays the ball into the box.

Colney Heath Ladies, Charlene Moreton

  Another free-kick in a similar position, Dell with another decision against her the Harlow bench not happy to, make a change Dell withdrawn, with Tayla Handscombe coming on. Gardiner to play the ball long into the area again for Conley Heath to attack going long falls to Townsend-Brown wide of the far post smashes a shot in across the face of goal strikes the far post back into play straight a Freestone little time to adjust her body takes on the 1st time strike screws the attempt away from goal. 

Annie Hickey sliding in to tackle for Colney Heath

  Colney Heath attack late in the first half, Sende intercepting the ball, Katie Farrell too doing well at the back as Moreton and Oliver try their luck on the right. Gardiner with a long pass forwards finds the ever willing Oliver running clear on the right down the line her squared cross into the middle on the area behind Townsend-Brown, Moreton coming in behind her connects sees her shot pulled wide. Kelly Hancock defending well for Colney Heath as Harlow mount a late attack, Binding looking to put the ball on for Bruno.

Half-time Harlow Town Ladies 1-1 Colney Heath Ladies

  All square at the break, 1-1 between the two sides. Chances to go further ahead for both Mullett with two vital saves for Colney Heath, whilst their attackers movements has caused the Harlow defence issues at the other end. Harlow have attacked well occasionally let down by decision making in the final 3rd. An open and lively game physical without being malicious an entertaining watch.

A blow for Colney Heath at the start of the 2nd half, forced into a change Hickey having taken a knock to the head feeling unwell rightly comes off, Kelly Glynn entering the game. Colney Heath to get the 2nd half underway. The home side winning an early free-kick inside their opponents half the ball played forwards won by Freestone. A quiet start to the 2nd half Harlow pushing players onto the Colney Heath defence to apply more pressure to the ball, Mullett dealing well with an awkward situation inside her six yard box as the ball is put into her, Binding and Bruno both closing the keeper down put behind a goalkick given.

   King gets hold of the ball in the middle for Harlow bringing it forwards with purpose aims to lay it out to Handscombe attacking left, she can’t quite take the ball on into her stride. 

  GOAL! Moments later though Handscombe does get hold of the ball inside the Colney heath box to put the hosts into an early lead in the 2nd half. The ball played forwards into Handscombe left she comes inside just outside the box Bruno in close support the pass into the striker as Handscombe runs on past her the ball given back to her closing in on goal she gets her head over the ball and strikes an arrowing shot home before Mullett can move 2-1. 

Harlow Town Ladies, Tayla Handscombe

  A strong start to the 2nd half from Harlow, Binding sweeping the ball out to Bassett on the right she is tackled by Fhalora. Harlow come on again Smith with ball 30 yards out playing it into Bruno top of the area one touch and turns to shoot, Mullett making the save low to her right to push the ball away for a corner. Right side, Harlow bring on Liv Steele before it is taken.

 GOAL! Harlow double their lead from the corner kick the ball played into the area Colney heath struggle to get it away as it drops into the danger area deflected back out to Woodacre outside the area the central defender brings the ball away the the right the space opens up in front of her a sight on goal she takes the opportunity from 20 yards out hits the ball well it flies in across the goal to nestle in the bottom corner 3-1.

   11 minutes gone in the 2nd half and Harlow have gotten themselves into a strong position, Colney Heath make a 2nd change Gardiner coming off, Adrienne Milton coming on going into an attacking role. Smith on a free-kick on halfway for Harlow the ball up towards the edge of the area cleared by Lucy Hancock. Binding nipping in to win the ball carries on her run into the box strikes the ball the swerving shot angling back safely into the gloves of Mullett. 

Poppy Binding with Sophie Joseph

  Another injury blow in defence for Colney Heath, Fhalora down has to come off after lengthy treatment Sarah Brennan coming on for the visitors. Struggling to get anything going in attack Colney Heath have Townsend-Brown running with the ball on the left outpacing her marker cuts the ball back across the top of the area, spinning Milton back to goal tries to help it on through to Oliver on the right just can’t quite find her. Maisie Ryan comes on for Harlow replacing Binding. 

  Harlow are causing all sorts of problems for Colney Heath now is very nearly an own goal from a long free-kick launched into the area the ball headed narrowly wide of the post. King is coming forwards with the ball more in the 2nd half taking it away to the left cuts back to shoot from 20 yards out putting the strike straight at Mullett. Lucy Hancock sliding in to defend for Colney Heath as Harlow attack on the left. Glynn defends at the near post cutting out a cross from the byline as Handscombe gets away on the right for Harlow. 

Lily Bruno getting her head on the ball for Harlow Town Ladies

  Glynn in again on the edge of the box to charge down Steele as she lines up a shot from the edge of the area. Colney Heath have there backs to the wall can’t get the ball forwards as Harlow press the ball high up the pitch forwards passes not coming off like they were in the 1st half. Kelly Hancock gets back into the box to slide in a tackle Steele as she tries to work space for a shot left of goal as King sends her through. Tegan Burling comes on for Harlow replacing Bassett.

  GOAL! Harlow extend there lead the ball put down the line on the right from a set-piece after a pause in play knocked inside by Handscombe to Steele 20 yards out on for King who takes it further infield across the D looking for a shot hits a low left foot strike in towards goal runs away in celebration as it lands in the back of the net a well worked goal 4-1. King is substituted then with Dell coming back on. 

  Harlow have their tails up want more goals are dominant coming forwards once again Bassett with the ball right side lines up a shot from distance drags the shot wide across goal. Joseph comes forwards for Colney Heath moving wide right the ball rolled into her by Oliver she runs on down the wing before squaring a low cross into the area Townsend-Brown closing in on the penalty spot, attacking the cross doesn’t get a convincing touch as Orwell closing her down makes things difficult. Counter attacking the ball played on for Steele she has Bruno ahead of her ready to race onto the ball put into the box, Steele obliges, Mullett reads it well racing out to slide in and stop the ball for Bruno can let fly. 

  Dell is knocked out as she comes together in an accidental collision with Joseph as the Conley Heath midfielder tries to bring the ball out from the back catching Del on the side of her noggin, goes down like a sack of spuds. Play stops everyone knows Dell is out if it flat on the ground, but thankfully she comes round quickly but holding her head she’s taken straight off Binding coming back on.

  Chances rare for Colney Heath 2nd half, can’t get Oliver into the game like they did 1st half Townsend-Brown on the left powers forwards is tackled by Miller, the ball deflected to Milton she looks to tee up Freestone but her strike from distance is off the mark. Into injury time Harlow attack wide left Burling furthest forwards, Mullett comes a long way to slide into win the ball does but Burling’s momentum sees the pair collide. The injury brings an end to the game the final whistle blowing Harlow winning 4-1.  Burling back on her feet after receiving treatment. 

Full time Harlow Town Ladies 4-1 Colney Heath Ladies

   A strong 2nd half performance from Harlow Town Ladies to secure the win scoring 3 goals after seeing chances going begging in the 1st half. Pressing the ball higher up the pitch, Colney Heath struggled to get going in the 2nd period after a good 1st half performance, forced into changes after injury during the game. Harlow were dominant in the 2nd half deserving the win. 

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

   Onto this afternoons Women’s Football East – Player of the Match award, it’s a tough one this Sunday a close call with 3 players in the running all from Harlow in the finish, Poppy Binding and Chloe Bassett doing well in midfield the captain edges them out however with a solid performance strong on the ball willing to get forwards and set up attacks, rounding it all of with a goal, Kaydee King is today’s Player of the Match.

 Both sides are in action in the FA Women’s Cup next Sunday tough trips for both against FAWNL South East Division One opposition, Cambridge United WFC await Harlow whilst Colney Heath travel to Billericay Town Ladies in 2nd Round Qualifying. 

  An enjoyable afternoon at The Harlow Arena it’s good to see both sides again after missing out last season. Thanks as always for helping me out with the team details and Harlow Town for the hospitality.

Match Report – Cambridge United WFC v Stevenage Ladies

Wednesday 12th September

FAWNL South East Division One

Midweek action under the floodlights this Wednesday with a trip to The Abbey Stadium to watch Cambridge United WFC take on Stevenage Ladies in FAWNL South East Division One.

  Cambridge United WFC missing out on the opportunity to play at The Abbey Stadium late last season get an early chance this time round to showcase their talents under the floodlights at the League Two ground. Women’s sides getting more opportunities to play at their respective men’s clubs than ever before.

  4 games into the season and Cambridge United WFC have 4 points from 3 league games played, started the season well with a draw and a win away from home a good result in the Determining Round of the FAWNL Cup followed before they suffered their 1st loss of the season at the weekend going down to a stoppage time winner. The two promoted sides, Billericay Town Ladies and Crawley Wasps Ladies getting off to a flyer winning all of their games, Cambridge are amongst a cluster of sides below on 4 points looking to catch them.

   Stevenage Ladies come in to tonight’s game at The Abbey Stadium on the back of 3 straight defeats in all competitions having won their opening match of the season. Like Cambridge are bedding in a few new signings with Mark Dicker taking up the reins as 1st team manager. As great an opportunity this is for Cambridge, their opponents should relish the chance too.

  As you’d expect from a League club ground at the start of the season the pitch is immaculate, no excuses about bobbles tonight. Is a wide pitch so their will be plenty of space to exploit. The mainstand open, hot food and drink available with the Dion Dublin Bar also open. A pleasant evening dry and calm perfect weather for football.

Cambridge United starting XI – Savannah Smith, Abi Davies, Carrie Bennett, Kayleigh-Anne Burt, Fran Gough, Amy Howlett, Kelly Bingham, Amber Cantwell, Becky Shephard, Vicky Neal & Kelley Blanchflower (C). Subs – Liz Pamplin, Gabrielle Whitehurst, Faith Hewitt, Mollie Coupar & Kirsten Burt.

 Stevenage Ladies starting XI – Hannah Vandersluis, Erin Pope, Paige Logie (C), Dominique Godbeer, Charlotte Ryan, Kristi Burling, Ellie Searle, Shona Chitate, Ashleigh Deacon, Amy Makewell & Nicole Emmings. Subs – Amy Josland, Jodie Whitford-Stark & Poppy Bennett.

The teams lining up before the match

It’s the hosts Cambridge to get the match underway kicking off 1st half, wearing amber coloured shirts with black shorts and socks, Stevenage lining up opposite wearing white shirt with red vertical striping along with red shirts and socks. A couple of strong challenges put in early on from Stevenage as Cambridge look to work the ball forwards, its as the visitors get hold of the ball that Cambridge win it back in the middle of the park Amy Howlett bringing it on central aims to release Becky Shephard making an attacking run on the left cutting inside towards the edge of the area Stevenage goalkeeper Hannah Vandersluis alert out to the edge of her area gathers the through ball before the Cambridge winger can latch onto it.

   Play is turned around quickly by Stevenage defending on the left side the ball cleared up to Ashleigh Deacon in a central position she spots striker Nicole Emmings making a run into space on the right sending the ball on for her Emmings takes it on into the box shooting from the angle sends the ball racing low past the the diving keeper Savannah Smith but also wide of the far post. Deacon cutting inside from the right 25 yards out lines up a strike the ball charged down by Fran Gough in the Cambridge defence.

  A good tempo to the match both sides relishing the opportunity Kelly Bingham winning the ball in midfield for the hosts lays it back to left back Carrie Bennett, she goes long with Shephard eager to race in behind for the left the bouncing ball too close to the keeper however Vandersluis positioned high catches the ball. No one spending any time on the ball often leads to defence turned into counter attack, Cambridge captain Kelley Blanchflower has a chance a central run into the box the ball driven into her path taking it left of goal looks to put the shot back across the keeper with the outside of her boot, Vandersluis drifting towards her near post can claim the ball.

  Up the other end Smith comes out to block Emmings as she is played in behind by Deacon taking up a good central position as Stevenage attack. A set-piece for Stevenage wide on the left the ball delivered high towards those gathering at the top of the Cambridge area, it’s Kayleigh-Anne Burt defending for the hosts that headers the ball clear. Cambridge are looking to peel off the full-backs get in behind Vicky Neal up with Blanchflower the latter almost succeeds central only Vandersluis’ quick reactions coming to the edge of her box to slide in to stop the ball prevents a shot, colliding with Blanchflower the contact accidental.

   A good spell from Cambridge, attacking Shephard left sends a pacy ball into the area that evades everyone, the ball retrieved on the right side players are drawn towards it as the driven ball on the diagonal is sent in towards goal running wide Shephard tries to throw herself at the ball with Vandersulis diving for it gets the ball past the keeper lands in the side netting wide. Smith back on her goal line is well placed to catch the ball as Shona Chitate digs a snap shot out of her feet from 20 yards out. Room for Deacon on the right bringing the ball on for Stevenage players breaking into the box her cross sent in low near post is defended by Cambridge out for a corner with Amy Makewell attacking it.

   Cambridge break forwards Howlett central carrying it into the Stevenage half has Shepherd ahead of her cutting in behind from the left, Charlotte Ryan defending centrally for Stevenage gets in front of the Cambridge winger inside the area shielding the ball well allowing Vandersluis to gather safely. Neal’s turn to get in behind on the left holding up the ball sends the cross in long across the face of goal Blanchflower coming in far post the target, Stevenage captain Paige Logie does well to intercept and putting behind for a corner so close to her goal. 

   Neal once again moving to the right  to receive the ball wide has Abi Davies breaking forwards inside her lays the ball into the speeding full backs path Davies shot from range charged down the ball rebounding away for a corner on the right. A good deliver in central under the bar Vandersluis doing well to glove the ball up and on towards the far post, Cambridge’s Gough leaping heads the ball back in towards goal blocked Stevenage defend the ball eventually behind for the goalkick.

  Is a good contest both sides looking to attack quickly sees the attackers from both sides looking to exploit pockets of space. Dominique Godbeer sliding in to challenge Howlett outside the box left of goal as she looks to burst inside receive the return ball from Shephard on the left. Neal charges down Vandersluis as she attempts to kick the ball long from the top of the area, no control over where the rebound goes it’s deflected behind wide of goal. Bennett with a vital interception as Stevenage play the diagonal ball long from the left with Deacon away on the right.

   Breaking Stevenage’s Kristi Burling on for Chitate the pass forwards into Emmings, tries the back heel to try and put strike partner Makewell in behind the Cambridge defence, Gough isn’t fooled turns and cuts the ball out. Shephard and Neal combine in attack Shephard coming forwards passing the ball inside to Neal 25 yards out continues her run past her Neal shifting the ball on into her path edge of the area central Shephard looks to place her shot past the advancing keeper places the ball wide of the goal beyond.

   Howlett brought down as she tries to get forwards left side combine with Neal. A good position 25 yards out left of the D, Cantwell on the ball sends a rising ball in towards goal, off target however as Vandersulis coming across to the near post can watch in drop harmlessly wide. Emmings coming near post sees the ball into her low from Ellie Searle on the left, attempting to control and turn goalwards Gough gets the tackle in. 

A throw in for Cambridge left as they come forwards the ball finding it’s way into Blanchflower controlling inside the box turns her marker making room for a shot plays the ball straight at the keeper. Burling and Searle working together left side a cross squared inside to Makewell 20 yards out her shot charged down by Burt. Stevenage pressing late on in the first half win a corner right side a good delivery in close to goal Smith gloving the ball away dropping far post little time to react volleys the ball up over the crossbar. 

  Attacks in the closing moments of the 1st 45 a free-kick played in from wide left for Stevenage Chitate stooping to header the ball right on the edge of the area sees her effort take a deflection wide. Howlett leaning back to strike the ball coming into her from 20 yards out as Cambridge attack across the face of the Stevenage area sees her effort swerve wide of target. A late break Blanchflower picking up the ball looks for options Shephard with a central run Blanchflower tries to play her in Logie doing well for Stevenage sliding in to intercept the ball. 

Half-time Cambridge United WFC 0-0 Stevenage Ladies

  A good contest ends in stalemate at the break neither side finding a clinical edge both attacking with purpose with no one taking time on the ball a high tempo has seen passes rushed and quality through the middle at a premium defences doing well. The attackers all wanting to drift into space haven’t been able to combine where it matters inside the box. Will that change in the 2nd half?

2nd half huddles

Stevenage to get thing’s underway in the 2nd period. Cambridge get hold of the ball and coming forwards win themselves a corner on the left. A long delivery Stevenage can’t get the ball away as Howlett plays it back in towards Blanchflower comes in, Ryan defending for the visitors to prevent a shot on goal. A shirt pull spotted by the referee earns Abi Davies a card for Cambridge joining the Makewell in the book who was cautioned first half. The set-piece wide right driven in low towards the near post Emmings there can’t get a clean connection the chance gone.

   Searle picks up the ball driving forwards attempts the diagonal pass out for Deacon on the right, Burt making the interception for Cambridge. Neal is a presence for Cambridge up front working hard to pull the Stevenage defence towards her, her persistence on the left bringing a corner kick. Cantwell to play the ball into the area, Burt coming towards the ball plays it back to the corner taker Cantwell dropping her shoulder cutting past a challenge sends a low cross in towards the near post Gough is there can’t quite get the ball out from under her feet before Stevenage’s Ryan closes her down.

    The ball given to her as she breaks clear on the left Stevenage’s Searle looks to strike the ball in towards goal from the top of the area, Smith with the save diving to her right to push the ball away. The tempo reduced 2nd half both sides still attacking and counter attacking the ball is rarely still. Gough fouls Makewell in a dangerous position central 20 yards out. It’s the Stevenage striker to take it striking the ball in low towards goal finds it’s way through unimpeded straight at Smith however back on her line the keeper coming forwards to gather the ball.

   Both sides make a change within minutes of each other Deacon coming off for Stevenage is replaced by Amy Josland. Faith Hewitt on for Cambridge replaced Shephard. Blanchflower looks to get in behind on the left Pope and Ryan closing her down. 

  Penalty! Cambridge are awarded a spot kick as Neal s checked inside the box as she goes to strike the ball played into her from Hewitt on the left. A chance for taker Howlett to put the hosts into the lead, looking to place the ball high to the right misses the score remains 0-0. 

   Stevenage are fired up now feel aggrieved with the penalty award, Howlett gets back on the ball a strong run into the area right of goal fires a squared ball across the Stevenage six yard box, Ryan clearing for Stevenage. Closing in on the final 15 minutes Cambridge probing put a few long range balls into the Stevenage area, Godbeer and Ryan both winning it for the visitors. A second substitution for Stevenage, Pope coming off with Poppy Bennett. Attacking right side the diagonal ball finding Searle coming in field from the left strikes the ball from the top of the area her effort narrowly over the bar, a corner awarded nicking off a Cambridge body on it’s way through. Gough winning the ball for Cambridge from the set-piece.

  Blanchflower breaking away into the clear on the right as the diagonal pass put long picks her out taking the ball on into the box strikes across the ball on the angle Vandersluis throwing her gloves out to make the save deflects it central, Neal in on the follow up, so to is Ryan the defender doing superbly to get the ball clear in front of goal. 

  A goal now would surely be the winner both sides thinking it is there for the taking Howlett with Cantwell in the middle played on for Blanchflower to the right brings the ball inside across the top of the area determined to get a shot away fired in towards the Stevenage goal Bennett blocks for the visitors. Jodie Whitford-Stark comes on as Stevenage make their final substitution Burling coming off. The substitute with a chance to strike the ball early on laid back to her from inside the box off a throw on the right the ball won’t sit for her as Whitford-Stark sends it over. 

  A free-kick awarded on half way for Cambridge, Cantwell with a good delivery into the area for a moment it looks like Burt might have stolen in behind to attack the far post, Vandersluis managing to get the ball away. Cambridge come close to breaking the stalemate once more Neal with the chance stooping into a header as she positions herself near post the cross played in from the right, Vandersluis diving for it the ball evading her skips out of play off the base of the post. 

  Cambridge press late on Stevenage hit them on the break the ball fired long up field Emmings getting the better of the defence to strike the ball from just inside the box sees her attempt whistle over the crossbar. Ryan defending up the other end as Howlett looks to break forwards onto the ball played in from the right the Stevenage centre back putting in the tackle as Howlett lines up a shot. 

Full time Cambridge United WFC 0-0 Stevenage Ladies

  The final whistle blows and it’s a point a piece as the sides play out a goalless draw. Another point on the board for Cambridge, Stevenage ending their run of losses. Neither side with be happy with the result as both should feel they could have won the game. Cambridge coming the closet. More clinical finishing was needed however defences on top with little time was devoted to the ball in the middle of the park. 

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

  Onto tonight’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match a difficult one, defenders on top ultimately especially through the middle. All did a good job, one edging it for me and that is Stevenage Ladies, Charlotte Ryan who made some well timed and important challenges throughout the match.

Nice to see a game under the lights, a great venue and hopefully Cambridge United WFC will get another opportunity to play there soon. My thanks to everyone for their help this evening.