Sunday 21st November
Suffolk Women’s County Cup
Another venture into Suffolk this Sunday to watch a game from the 2nd Round of the Women’s County Cup and a look at two new sides for the first time as Stowupland Falcons Women play Brettvale Ladies.
The competition dominated by Suffolk’s leading women’s football side over the past decade with Ipswich Town Women winning the County Cup for the 7th successive season last time around their Development defeating Needham Market Women 6-0. Guaranteed to be a new name on the trophy this season with Ipswich withdrawing a side from the competition. That in itself seeing a huge shift in the County Cup as other established and up and coming sides within the county see there chances of reaching the final greatly enhanced.
Stowupland Falcons Women an emerging force in female game entering a women’s side for the first time last season. The club aiming to become a leading force for grassroots football in Suffolk running 4 adult sides aswell as a strong youth section that has amongst it’s ranks an U11, U13 & U16 girls side. The original side entering in 2020/21 Stowupland Falcons U18 Girls joining as the SWGFL expanded to feature two divisions. Going straight into the Premier Division were laying 4th with 3 wins from their 7 games played before the COVID pandemic saw a season successive season curtailed. The league once again featuring two divisions sides withdrawing however sees the Premier Division reduced to 7 sides. A tough start for Stowupland losing their opening 3 matches have since rallied to draw, then win their first game of the season 5-3 at home to Brantham Athletic Ladies with new signing Kirsten Hutchings who has a strong goal scoring record within the league netting 4 goals.
Brettvale Ladies joining the league in the 2018/19 campaign have already ticked off a County Cup final appearance. Reaching the 2019/20 final where lay like so many others were beaten by Ipswich Town Women’s young development side 7-0. The final delayed due to the COVID pandemic Suffolk FA ensuring the game was played the following season. Brettvale recruiting a strong squad with plenty of playing experience within Suffolk and the regional set up above. COVID no doubt affecting the clubs development as it has for alot of clubs. Have made an excellent start to this season’s campaign winning all 4 of their league matches to lay 2nd in the table a point behind Holland Ladies. Stacey Teager top scorer with 4 goals in 4 league appearances, Laura Tuley with 3 goals from 4.
Todays venue the Stowupland Sports & Social Club. The pitches beyond the clubhouse and changing rooms. A large area featuring numerous grass pitches with an area turned over to cricket in the summer. Today’s pitch featuring a picturesque scene off a church behind one goal. Rain blowing through dark clouds before kick-off blustery and chilly, not deal as I’d have preferred to be close to the hedge on the far side for some protection but that would have meant looking into the low sun which would pose problems for those playing too. The wind blowing from one goal mouth to the other also a potential factor to weigh up.
Stowupland Falcons Women starting XI – Abbi Goodenough, Emily Bates, Milly Gant, Abby Durrant, Ebonie Calvert (C), Kim Edwards Evie Bloom Ella Edwards, Amelia Skeggs, Laura Brame & Sarah Harrison. Subs- Kirsten Hutchings & Simona Bieniauskaite.
Brettvale Ladies starting XI – Ellie Bird, Rachel White, Chloe Wilson, Danielle Lynch, Kirby King, Claire Turnbull (C), Coral Young, Sheryl Nokes, Harriet Young, Georgia Lindon & Laura Tuley. Subs – Aimee Berry, Rachel Linsdell, Kristie Turner & Sophie White.
(roll on roll off substitutes)
It’s the visiting side Brettvale to kick-off the first half wearing a navy and sky blue coloured shirts, navy shorts and sky blue socks with Stowupland opposite wearing yellow shirts with blue shorts and socks. The ball played back into the defence out to Rachel White on the right sends t up the line for Georgia Lindon to hunt down, full back Milly Gant coming across to challenge put the ball out for a throw in.
Tentative early exchanges the ball moving quickly players from both sides closing down play spread out to the right Stowupland on the move with Laura Brame taking the ball up the line her cross into the box dealt with by Brettvale defender Danielle Lynch. Brettvale play the ball out from the back White on for Lindon right side squares the ball central for her captain Claire Turnbull 30 yards out before spinning in behind Turnbull threading a superb ball into the area for Lindon to attack, Stowupland’s captain tracking across to tackle Lindon before she can unleash a shot inside the six yard box. Players all concerned about balls coming in from the right with the sun in their faces.
Laura Tuley from the angle off a throw on the right tries an ambitious effort on goals her attempted shot running wide beyond the far post. Brettvale are looking to release Lindon on the right at every opportunity, has pace the ball lifted into her twists inside pushing towards the area, Gant closing in to put in the challenge the ball out for a throw. The visitors work the ball free from the set-piece to lift a cross into the box, Stowupland keeper Abbi Goodenough getting her gloves on the ball. A good tempo being set the ball never still Turnbull clipping a diagonal ball into Lindon right side, Gant once again defending the hosts breaking out from the ball Amelia Skeggs with a long pass out to the right, defended a throw won in the corner. From it a cross is delivered into the area Kirby King up to head the ball near post, with Stowupland’s Sarah Harrison drifting in behind.
Brettvale are awarded a free-kick wide on the right, Harriet Young over the ball played in towards the top of the area attacked turned in towards goal low on target but pops up straight into Goodenough’s gloves. Coral Young seeing the ball into her feet central for Brettvale flicking it out to the left channel for Chloe Wilson 20 yards out has a stab at goal the shot sent wide. Gant travelling with the ball left side on for Harrison to attack up the line, White comes sliding in to take the ball away from her for a throw. On the opposite flank Emily Bates comes on support from Skeggs and Evie Bloom the ball crossed into the Brettvale box King with the defensive header to clear. The ball hotly contested in the middle, Kim Edwards tackling Young to regain possession.
The hosts applying pressure in the final 3rd winning a corner on the right. The delivery short into the box near side flicked into the six yard box, Brettvale struggle to get it away from the moment as Stowupland get players in amongst them, Harriet Young eventually lifting it high upfield. Wilson on the left for Brettvale storms forwards with the ball, Bates getting in shoulder to shoulder easing her off the ball. Brame getting into the right corner with the ball turns inside Sheryl Nokes lunges in to take the ball out for a throw. Stowupland get a cross into the area from it, King needing to get her head on the ball once more near post to deny Harrison an opportunity running in central.
Calvert with a vita interception at the back for Stowupland as Tuley gathering the ball in midfield looks to send Lindon through in behind. Tuley drifting out to the right holding the ball up is fouled as she looks to spin in behind her marker the visitors awarded a free-kick.
GOAL! Harriet Young over the ball close to the touch-line half way inside the Stowupland half players up from the back lining up to make runs into the box, Young struck well rising up into the air a dangerous ball into the box, the sun at her back could well pose problems for those facing the ball including the goalkeeper, is a fantastic ball in however and dropping Goodenough goes up for it but is beyond her reach and it dips under the bar and lands in the back of the net for Young’s first goal of the season 0-1.
18 minutes played and the visitors take the lead. Stowupland look to make ground on the left from the restart, the notepad collecting some Suffolk mud as I use it to stop the ball running out of play. Brame on the turn shifts the ball between her feet fouled as she looks to put Harrison away into the box no advantage play brought back for the free-kick. A similar position from where Brettvale scored moments ago. The delivery launched high into the box allowed to drop amongst bodies at the far post, players from both sides scrambling for it, Brettvale come away with it up into Tuley spreads play right for Lindon, doesn’t get far before Gant is back on her to tackle.
A change for Stowupland, Harrison off for Kirsten Hutchings in attack. Brettvale have increased their urgency in the final 3rd getting runners on from midfield to support the attack, Coral Young into Tuley central, Abby Durrant closing in to challenge top of the D. Ellie Bird coming out quickly to the edge of her area to catch the ball cleanly as Hutchings right channel look to hook it on from an Evie Bloom cross on the wing. Bird’s opposing number Goodenough racing out to the top of her area to clear as Turnbull lays the ball though for the advancing Coral Young.
Hutchings coming for the ball right sees it rolled into her path shooting early on the angle a low drive racing wide through the six yard box. Brettvale make a change Wilson coming off on comes Aimee Berry. Stowupland win a set-piece on the right side of the area, Skeggs to take long to the far post headed out to the top of the area not clear, Calvart goes after it seeing her strike blocked the ball angling away for a throw.
Gant into Ella Edwards central out to Skeggs moving left takes on an ambitious effort from all of 30 yards out the shot racing wide low across the Brettvale area. Brettvale continue to press in numbers forcing the Stowupland defence deep into there box, defend well but getting out is tricky with so many back. White regaining possession into the middle play put out to the left Berry forwards riding a challenge the cross in cleared, play stopped with a Stowupland player down on the far side.
Bloom can’t continue and is carried off the pitch, on comes Simona Bieniauskaite slotting into the left back position. 10 minutes left in the first half. Brettvale press the attack Nokes on the left outside the area allowed to come inside with the ball sees two strikes at goal blocked at close range the 2nd by one of her own players. Ella Edwards up the right for Stowupland crosses into the Brettvale area Harriet Young rising to head clear for the visitors.
This being the 451st game I’ve done a report for and the 1st tie this has happened, haven’t seen many players sin binned as it is so to see two go off in quick succession is a first! It all starts with Tuley gathering the ball into her feet on the left moving on Bieniauskaite getting on her shoulder the two battling for the ball go over, the free-kick going in favour of Stowupland, Tuley isn’t happy voices those complaints and is shown a yellow and sent to the side lines. As this is happening the referee clearly hasn’t liked what Coral Young has said and she two is shown a yellow and sent to the sides lines two! Brettvale down to 9 for the next 10 minutes of the game.
Brettvale quickly regrouping into two banks of four to see out the half. Stowupland have the player advantage can they make it count. Brame on the right up the line wrapping her foot around the ball is headed clear of the box by Lynch. Brame coming out to the left flicks it on for Hutchings central, turns towards the area, straight into Lynch who holds her off, clearing the ball for a throw on the left. When they can Brettvale are looking to run the ball into the corners eat up time Nokes on the left winning a corner, the visitors naturally don’t commit too many forwards. Durrant with the simple clearance. Brame through the centre for Hutchings inside the D, Bird comes racing out to meet her as King slides into challenge, Hutchings managing to stay on her feet, between defender and goalkeeper though the threat has been averted.
Half-time Stowupland Falcons Women 0-1 Brettvale Ladies
A narrow lead for Brettvale at the break as they hold on at the end of the half with 9 players. An exciting tie played at a fast tempo the ball rarely still. Few clear cut chances though the final ball more often than no favouring the defence. Both have been solid throughout. A well struck free-kick the difference between the sides. Brettvale getting players forwards well forcing the Stowupland defence deep which has made counter attacking difficult. A single goal in the tie though all to play for in the 2nd half.
Brettvale starting the 2nd half as they left the 1st with 9 on the field with the 10 minute penalty yet to be completed. A substitution though seeing Kristie Turner on for Lindon on the right. Stowupland unchanged. The sun low in the sky now unlikely to pose a problem the wind biting now and cloud beginning to grow darker as the hosts get the 2nd half underway. Brettvale forming two walls of four frustrating Stowupland who are rushing their passes when perhaps they can pause a little on the ball. Turnbull getting hold of it in the centre out to Berry on the left, Bieniauskaite closing her down.
Brame central collecting the ball into her feet holding off a challenge before spinning well to her left to release Hutching on the right wing her cross shot on the angle landing on the roof of the net. Hutching in the middle plays the ball out to Bates to the right, Turnbull coming across to slide in and tackle. Stowupland with a corner on the left driven in low near side deflected out to the top of the area a snap shot charged down by Brettvale. Brame trying to bring the ball down around the D set up a shot can’t get it away before Lynch can get back on her to block. A rainbow forming in the sky beside the black cloud tells me rain in imminent.
More drama as another yellow card is shown and Brettvale coach Andy Parton is asked to vacate the area for 10 minutes for dissent having called for a hand ball. On the pitch however Brettvale are back to their full complement having kept Stowupland at bay with just 9 on the field. Tuley up to positioned left of the D 20 out as Berry makes a run with the ball across the D lays the ball into her feet, turns, Durrant close in blocking her shot. A few spots of rain starting to fall
Ella Edwards on the ball for Stowupland carrying it on through the middle playing the pass into Hutchings to the right drives on into the box, Lynch going with her blocking her cross to divert the ball behind for a corner. The set-piece fired on low at the near post turned behind for a goal kick.
Penalty! Brettvale have a throw on the left high up the pitch put into Tuley’s feet back to goal outside the box, is strong turns getting into the area, where she is tripped by Calvert before she can get a shot away the referee pointing to the spot. Tuley placing the ball to take it. gets plenty of power behind the ball but too much height as she shot cannons down off the crossbar and a foul is spotted before anyone can go after the rebound.
The rain falling heavily now a pain as I need the umbrella, but a notepad, camera, umbrella and wind are a bad combination the umbrella escaping for a moment needing rescuing the joys of grassroots football. The game has developed into a series of free-kicks given away by both sides as they look to hustle the ball. Turnbull in particular getting about the pitch to break up play.
Brame looking to combine with Hutchings up top the latter moving about not staying on one defender for long. Ella Edwards with a good pass into Brame central looks to shift to the right move in behind to shoot, is quickly closed down by both Coral Young and Turnbull.
GOAL! Not long after they are awarded one penalty Brettvale get an opportunity from the spot again. Off a throw in high on the left the ball launched into the box left side, Brettvale players immediately appealing for handball the decision in their favour the referee pointing to the spot for a 2nd time. Kristie Turner to take it this time, keeping it low placing it wide into the bottom corner as the keeper dives the right way 0-2.
Brettvale doubling their lead midway though the 2nd half, Stowupland get straight on the attack from the restart the ball up the right a throw won into Hutchings she spins inside turning into the box sending a cross through the six yard box no one there Lynch able to clear for Brettvale. Quick to get up the other end the ball crossed into the Stowupland box headed behind for a corner by Calvert. The set play driven in near post attacked, deflected behind for a goal kick.
Turner with a strike from distance on the angle some 30 yards out races wide across goal. Tuley soon after from a similar angle 25 yards out driven on low has Goodenough scrambling across her goal diving must have gotten fingertips to it as it runs wide a corner awarded. from the left dropping down in the six yard box at the far post squirms free for Tuley unmarked 10 yards out sends her 1st time strike over the top.
GOAL! Stowupland get themselves back into the game pulling a goal back 5 minutes after falling 2 behind. Gant with a fantastic ball forwards from the left into Brame 30 yards out left of the D turns and lobs the advancing keeper to score 1-2.
The goal giving Stowupland renewed confidence as they push players forwards hustling the ball in the final 3rd. Hutchings nicking it off the full back spinning in behind on the right squares it central for Brame, who helps it on looking to put it on a plate for the advancing Kim Edwards, Turnbull putting in a superb tackle to take the ball away to the left, Skeggs forcing a throw in the pressure staying on Bates moves in central with the ball seeing a shot blocked from 20 yards out.
Gant in a central position from a deep position lifting a long ball in towards the far post, Bird scrambling across her goal dropping on it far post. Nokes left on for Berry, takes on Bieniauskaite the full back forcing her wide preventing a cross coming in. as the game moves into the final 15 minutes. Coral Young 30 yards out passes to Harriet Young on her right 30 yards out allowed time and space to line up a strike sends her effort over the bar.
Turnbull winning a free-kick for Brettvale after a strong run on the right outside the box, fired in at an inviting height through the six yard box Berry closing in at the far post can’t quite get anything on it. The ball still in play retrieved by Berry her cross in central Turnbull laying it off for Coral Young to clip over.
GOAL! Brettvale are awarded a free-kick inside their own half. Lynch over the ball as players go forwards. Is a miscue not the ball she intended but even as she lambasts herself it turns into a fantastic assist for Tuley. Intending to play it high to the right instead it is scuffed low central nevertheless catches the defence flat footed the ball in behind Tuley inside the D alert latching onto it taking it left turns back inside onto her right opening up her body to lift the ball past the keeper into the top corner 1-3.
Less than 10 minutes on the clock Stowupland make a change bringing Harrison back on for Bieniauskaite. Light is fading fast as Stowupland win a corner on the left goes long put back in on the right by Skeggs cleared by King, out to Lindon on the right drives on into the area before giving away a foul against Gant.
GOAL! Stowupland committing players forwards as they look for a goal are hit on the break the ball cleared out of defence into Turnbull in the middle releases it early for Tuley in attack to have a clear run at the box closing in on the keeper producing a clinical finish shooting low to place it in the bottom corner 1-4.
Two quick fire goal seeing Brettvale take control of the tie with less than 10 minutes left. Stowupland keep up their attacking play the ball pushed into Brame in the left channel turns inside king coming to close her down. A triple switch for Brettvale sees White, Harriet Young and Tuley replaced by Wilson, Sophie White and Rachel Linsdell. Ella Edwards fouled as she looks to make progress on the right for Stowupland the hosts with a free-kick inside for Bates central goes forwards is tackled 25 out by Linsdell, then a shot his blasted wide from distance.
Into the final minutes Stowupland pressing a free-kick right side in from deep Sophie White heading it clear at the far post. Seconds left as Linsdell gets it out to Lindon on the right powers her way into the box before being tackled by Gant. The final whistle blows and Brettvale progress to the Suffolk Women’s County Cup quarter finals.
Full time Stowupland Falcons Women 1-4 Brettvale Ladies
An entertaining cup tie that sees Brettvale progress with a 4-1 win, 2 late goals ensuring the result after a brief fightback from Stowupland after they got it back to 2-1. A even contest for much of the 1st half with both sides quick to close the other down few chances created Brettvale with the narrow lead at the break ending the half and starting the 2nd with 9 on the pitch, their game management then was superb with Stowupland failing to take advantage. A missed penalty but a 2nd opportunity taken from the spot midway through the 2nd half. Stowupland though pulling it back to 2-1 for a little while it was certainly game on before Brettvale took control with two quick goals from Tuley to ensure the result.
Women’s Football East – Player of the Match
Onto this afternoon’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match. A few performances of note to mention first though. For Stowupland, Milly Gant had a excellent game at left back, certainly an area Brettvale were looking to exploit they got little joy with Gant putting in some good tackles. Laura Brame showing good movement and positioning linking up the attack and midfield well. For Brettvale, Kirby King was excellent in defence with a number of vital headers and tackles. Laura Tuley up top late on with two clinical finishes. The award though goes to Brettvale captain, Claire Turnbull was strong in the middle throughout and getting about the pitch to make tackles and break up play. Organised the team well when they were forced down to 9.
Every game is different and that’s why I love it! An entertaining cup tie from Suffolk. Seeing two new sides for the first time although I have to say plenty of familiar faces. My thanks to both sides for their assistance today as always it is much appreciated.
by Darren Gilham