Sunday 17th November
Norfolk Women’s County Cup
A game from the 2nd Round of this season’s Norfolk Women’s County Cup this Sunday for Women’s Football East, the venue The Walks Stadium to watch King’s Lynn Town Ladies v Wroxham Women.
Plenty of action across the county to take in this weekend the first official Women’s Football Weekend where fans of all ilks are encouraged to come watch a game of women’s football. A county cup weekend for many with several tasty looking ties thrown up. None more so than today’s fixture between two sides who have ambitions for reaching the final itself.
King’s Lynn Town Ladies reaching the final of the Norfolk Women’s County Cup last season for the 1st time in their history. An historic day too in that it was the first time the County Cup final had taken place at Norwich City FC’s Carrow Road stadium played in front of a record crowd. A tough draw for King’s Lynn Town Ladies in the 2nd Round of this season’s competition but then the club only needs to look back to there recent successes in the competition and a memorable 2nd Round defeat to Norwich City Ladies (the highest league placed side in the Norfolk) a couple of season’s ago. Playing in ERWFL Division One North this season beginning to find some form are playing higher league opponents once again.
Wroxham Women a new name to women’s football in Norfolk but a familiar side the new guise for Acle United Women making the switch this season to join forces with Wroxham FC as the clubs first women’s side, plying their trade in the ERWFL Premier Division, a strong league are amongst the title challengers aiming for promotion to the FAWNL. Like King’s Lynn will fancy their chances in the County Cup finalists two seasons ago, winners as Acle back in the 2014/15 season. The higher league placed sides not seeded in the County Cup meeting they can meet early on sees Wroxham pitted against King’s Lynn this time around but again as Acle faced Norwich City Ladies at this stage last season beating the FAWNL to go on eventually knocked out in the semi-finals by Wymondham Town Ladies. Currently 2nd in the ERWFL Premier Division table, Grace Birchall leading the attack with 27 goals already this season.
Another opportunity for King’s Lynn Town Ladies to showcase their football at The Walks Stadium home of King’s Lynn Town FC, the large stand overlooking the pitch housing the clubs facilities, the cafe open a bar along with the changing rooms. Covered terracing opposite, a large pitch a good nick, the rain dying down earlier in the week to leave the game safe. A dull overcast sky above but any rain should stay away until later.
King’s Lynn Town Ladies starting XI – Bryony Robinson, Chloe Witt, Georgia Freeman, Shanice Burch, Charlee Griffith, Emma Corbyn, Becky Russell (C), Rachel Skinner, Tegan Wheeler, Deva Rawlings & Tiffany Forshaw. Subs – Lily Porter, Katie Ward & Jodie Hopkins-Duckhouse.
Wroxham Women starting XI – Amy Bell, Anna Larkins (C), Olivia Mungham-Grey, Victoria Pleavin, Chloe Shields, Ciera Flatt, Naomi Cooper Kayleigh Holloway, Mary-Anne Hoy, Lauren Bullard & Grace Birchall. Subs – Kirstie Kindred, Leanne Symonds & Grace Parker.
(roll on roll off substitutes)
Wroxham to get the 1st half underway wearing their away colours orange shirts with black shorts and black and white hooped socks. King’s Lynn line up opposite wearing blue coloured shirts and shorts with yellow trim and yellow and blue socks. Played back to the defence Wroxham look to play it forwards on the right Grace Birchall looking to get the ball down and take on the King’s Lynn defence, the tackle seeing the ball out for a throw. King’s Lynn captain Becky Russell carrying the ball on through the middle looks to release Rachel Skinner on the right her early ball crossed into the box headed clear back to Skinner to play in another high ball this one caught by goalkeeper Amy Bell.
A pacy start to the game both sides closing the ball down quickly looking to get going. Newly signed Ciera Flatt joining Wroxham last week plays the ball from the middle out to the right Kayleigh Holloway on down the line to cross into the box the ball headed clear of the area, Wroxham regather a strike fired in from distance on the right, caught high by King’s Lynn goalkeeper Bryony Robinson.
King’s Lynn get on the attack the ball threaded through to Chloe Witt getting forwards on the right taking defenders on gets in behind squaring a cross into the box the ball just behind striker Tiffany Forshaw, the Wroxham defence clearing at the far post. Wroxham come on the right a throw won deep in the corner put back up the line to Mary-Anne Hoy level with the top of the area fires a ball in central Flatt can’t take in her stride runs on through to Birchall positioned left of the D 20 yards out curls a low shot in, lacking power Robinson down to gather is right behind it.
Wroxham settling quickly, Naomi Cooper in the middle with a strong challenge to win the ball her pass aiming for Holloway breaking right comes inside tackled by King’s Lynn defender Georgia Freeman. Forshaw coming high to get hold of the ball strong against the Wroxham centre backs plays the forwards pass out to Emma Corbyn getting away on the right on behind crosses early no one in the box however to met the ball Wroxham able to bring it forwards. Forshaw getting on down the left wing doing well to win a corner. The ball played in to the near side defended.
Wroxham build through the middle a direct attack Hoy with the ball on almost has Birchall making the run ahead of her through on goal, a great tackle from Shanice Birch at the top of her area to deny her. Very competitive no one settling on the ball passes played quickly both sides looking to exploit the width. Wroxham get numbers forwards as Holloway and Lauren Bullard combine on the right the ball in cleared straight to Cooper tries her luck from distance a powerful shot low races wide across goal.
Russell latching onto Bell’s clearance from 35 yards out central strikes it on the half volley rushed the shot bends away from goal wide past the left post. A lively game both sides up for it a good atmosphere, Charlee Griffiths stepping up to intercept as Cooper tries to send Birchall through on the left. Skinner driving on down the right for King’s Lynn in attack her cross into the middle of the box, Witt furthest forwards to attack it can’t get enough contact headed away at the far post back to Skinner on the right closing in on the area her shot charged down.
A respite in the play a Wroxham player down injured. Some strong tackles from both sides two fully committed sides Tegan Wheeler having her ear bent by the referee. Birchall played through the centre in on goal gets a shot away past the rapidly closing Robinson but before it can reach it’s target the whistle blows for offside. Russell taking the ball on down into the right corner gets King’s Lynn a throw in, the further good player brings the hosts a corner the ball in defended near side by Wroxham won back on the left, the visitors defence out well to catch the King’s Lynn attacker offside.
Forshaw getting on down the left played in on the ball a strong run holds off her marker coming inside to blast in a shot on the angle a fierce drive rising across the goal face cannons down of the upright into the path of the advancing Corbyn coming at her quickly an instinctive slash at the ball, slices it wide, Wroxham scramble the ball clear. Up the other end Hoy shoots over from 22 yards out for Wroxham. The visitors win a free-kick wide right the ball lifted in towards the near post Russell back defending for King’s Lynn heading the ball up into the air put wide of goal Birchall quickest to react latching onto the ball fires it in low a blocking save by Robinson before her defence gets it away.
Forshaw carrying a threat attacking on the left for King’s Lynn a powerful runner with the ball at her feet aims to put Corbyn in central the ball won and cleared put straight back to Forshaw left of the box shoots firing the ball wide. Russell comes away with the ball right side fires it in on the angle, Bell down low in front of goal pushes it away in front of her straight at the on rushing Skinner, the block coming in as she pulls the trigger the ball cannoning back off her over the bar.
Holloway and Birchall switching flanks the former now on the left wins her side a corner, taking it the ball is cleared back to her, shifts it as she takes it up the line before driving in a shot towards the near post through bodies Robinson is across to cover the angle gathering the ball. On the opposite side Birchall gets her head down pushes on with the ball down the line before whipping in a dangerous ball on the angle, Robinson up at her near post to push the ball behind for the corner. On the right an inswinging delivery headed away by Griffith. Birchall straying clear through the centre shoots early the ball right of the D put wide across goal. Wroxham make a change, Kirstie Kindred on in attack replacing Bullard. Holloway on the attack left for Wroxham lifts a cross into the box Flatt racing forwards can’t quite take it in her stride but deflected the ball runs behind for a corner on the right.
GOAL! 5 minutes left to play in the first half and Wroxham open the scoring players congregating at the near post the ball flighted into the pack is knocked on central comes straight through to Flatt unmarked in the middle of the box, takes a touch before smashing the ball home into the the back of the net Robinson left stranded 0-1.
King’s Lynn look for an immediate response getting a cross into the Wroxham box from the right Forshaw attempting the header close in can’t quite get the required contact. King’s Lynn press the attack left side winning a corner kick in near side headed clear gathered by Russell outside the box turns inside before shooting looks off target heading wide across goal but into the six yard box a dangerous ball almost turned past Bell by her own defender makes a timely grab.
GOAL! Forshaw has already fired one warning shot across the Wroxham bows and injury time fast approaching in the first half fires her side back level receiving a good pass from Birch at the back out to her on the left side all of 30 yards out on the angle strikes the ball hard over the keeper and into the goal beyond to make it 1-1. The Walks letting out a roar of celebration.
A lively end to the half Skinner away on the right for King’s Lynn wins a throw high up the pitch put into Wheeler dragging the ball inside her cross cut out Wroxham break Birchall away with the ball on the right then Kindred racing into the the area, dispossessed, Birchall onto the ball to shoot, Robinson holding onto the ball.
Half-time King’s Lynn Town Ladies 1-1 Wroxham Women
A lively first half, between two committed sides fast paced highly entertaining two late goals seeing it level at 1 goal each at half-time. Both sides creating opportunities looking a threat going forwards, no one given much time on the ball, a few strong tackles throw in a great first 45 minutes of football and both sides will fancy their chances of getting the win 2nd half.
King’s Lynn to get the 2nd half underway don’t think any changes have been made at half-time Rawlings playing the ball from the middle long up to Forshaw, crossed in cleared by Pleavin for Wroxham. King’s Lynn with a strong opening to the 2nd period up on the right Russell on the ball top of the area right can’t find a way through closed down plays it back across to Skinner central gets her foot up to strike the ball the shot 20 yards out bouncing inside the ball caught cleanly by Bell. Forshaw attacking left has support from Wheeler, Shields lunging in makes the tackle for Wroxham before she can get inside to shoot.
Wroxham captain Anna Larkins at right back kept busy by Forshaw steeping ahead of he King’s Lynn attacker to intercept a diagonal pass put in from midfield. Russell coming on to link up with Forshaw crosses early aiming for Witt making a near post run, Larkins gets across her to defend for Wroxham. King’s Lynn pressing the advantage at the start of the 2nd half the ball worked inside played into Forshaw to strike 20 yards out right of the D put wide of the post.
Birchall brought down somewhat brutally as she charges forwards with the ball, strong tackling a feature of the game, both sides guilty however but both getting on with it not making a fuss, part of the fast paced nature of the game. King’s Lynn making a change Witt coming off on comes Jodie Hopkins-Duckhouse. The free-kick taken by Birchall claimed at the near post by Robinson an infringement bringing play back for a free-kick to King’s Lynn. Wroxham with a throw high on the left the ball gathered by Birchall struck on the angle narrowly over the bar.
Kindred in attack helping the ball on to Holloway getting free on the right into the box a mazy run on the ball blasts a shot in towards goal, Robinson with the parrying save. An open game now the result wide open, Skinner sending the ball on for Rawlings making a central run, Cooper back to defend for Wroxham. Russell right looks to send Forshaw through central, Bell winning the race to intercept the ball. Griffith with a superb tackle to deny Birchall an opportunity to get through into the box. Cooper is covering alot for ground in the middle of the park for Wroxham winning the ball back sends it on for Hoy who in turn threads it in behind for Birchall to chase too much on the pass allows Robinson to get out to claim.
Kindred bringing the ball on right in attack for Wroxham squares her cross along the top of the area finding Birchall left side 20 yards out stretching as she shoots the ball in lacking the pace to evade the keeper. Cooper with a crunching challenge in the middle to get the ball for Wroxham out to Larkins right down the line for Holloway dribbles into the box one drag back too many as she attempts to get a clear shot Birch with the lunging tackle to take the ball. Lily Porter joins the game for King’s Lynn in place of Skinner. Birchall out to Larkins on the right the full back travelling forwards the give and go attempted with Holloway out wide, Larkins not catching the shot as she looks to hit it first time from distance.
Changes for both sides, Grace Parker on for Mungham-Grey at the back for Wroxham, Katie Ward on for Corbyn for King’s Lynn.
GOAL! King’s Lynn take the lead in the County Cup tie with 15 minutes to play a fantastic strike from the captain too, the ball out left put in on the diagonal towards Forshaw top of the D, controls and lays it back for Russell to hit first time from all of 40 yards out rifled in on target a powerful hit over Bell before she can get anything on it 2-1.
Wroxham make a change straight away with Leanne Symonds on for Hoy. Holloway driving inside from the right is tackled by Freeman, the defender down injured the trainer called on a pause in play can’t continue, hobbles off, Witt sent back on Forshaw now dropping into defend at full back. Tensions starting to rise challenges still robust time starting to run out. Griffith and Flatt tangle a free-kick to Wroxham wide right curled out at the far post put in by Birchall.
Wheeler advancing for King’s Lynn moving right with the ball out to Witt keeps with her getting the return pass inside to Russell to hit from distance, the shot held by the keeper.
GOAL! From a throw in on the right inside the King’s Lynn half Wroxham get a late equalising goal, Birchall gathering the ball into her feet turning infield heading towards the area sends the cross in central missed by Cooper, met by Flatt beyond her 20 yards out on target parried up into the air in front of her by Robinson, Kindred quickest to pounce close in to knock it past her and over the line 2-2.
A blow for King’s Lynn conceding late on they respond well unleashing an all out offensive on the Wroxham defence pushing forwards Witt seeing a shot charged down 20 yards out. Larkins putting a clearance straight into the path of an advancing attacking the ball rebounding off her straight into Bell’s gloves. King’s Lynn press the attack Wroxham’s defence stand firm the final whistle blows the tie heading into extra-time.
Full time King’s Lynn Town Ladies 2-2 Wroxham Women
Light beginning to fade the floodlights coming on at The Walks, Wroxham to get the 1st period of extra play under way two 15 minute halves for either side to try an find a winner or the tie will be settled on penalties nothing to separate the sides so far. Birchall away on the left taking the ball into the area top corner foot through the ball blasts high and wild, goes down with injury looks in alot of pain, trainer and stretcher on after a pause in treatment Birchall denies the latter but can’t continue helped off the pitch Bullard races on to replace her.
Symonds with a half chance inside the box for Wroxham a defensive clearance put straight into her struck on the half volley fired wide. Cooper still full of running for Wroxham across to win possession looks to send Holloway through right side, Forshaw defending for King’s Lynn. Kindred bringing the ball on for Wroxham central lifts it forwards for Symonds in behind 20 yards out attempts to lob the advancing keeper the ball over her falls wide of goal.
Wroxham getting forwards Cooper winning the ball central passing to Bullard in towards the box the defence forced to clear as Robinson can’t get there coming out from goal. Off the resulting throw right Holloway fires in a cross close to the near post, Griffith in front of Symonds defending for King’s Lynn. Symonds forwards on the left inside to Kindred top of the box helped onto Holloway right side her ball in cut out and cleared struck back in from distance the shot racing wide of target.
Ward brought down by Shields sliding in just outside the box as she comes inside from the right. The free-kick in a dangerous position past the wall low narrowly wide of the post. Wroxham with one final attack in the 1st period of extra-time Kindred on for Cooper racing through the middle the King’s Lynn centre backs sliding in together to stop her run the ball deflected out to Symonds getting forwards left side controls and curls in a shot towards goal played straight into Robinson gloves.
Half-time extra time King’s Lynn Town Ladies 2-2 Wroxham Women
King’s Lynn to get the 2nd period of extra play underway 15 minutes left for either side to find what they hope will be the winning goal. Penalties looming. Forshaw moving back into an attacking role up top. Flatt on the ball for Wroxham 30 out looking for a position to shoot moving across goal before cutting back to unleash a shot goes wide as Flatt falls injured. Up gingerly is able to continue. Kindred with Flatt on the right attacking for Wroxham, King’s Lynn win the ball attempt to break quickly the ball forwards intercepted by Parker out to Holloway right comes inside tackled by Griffith.
Alot of energy expanded players on both sides tiring but no one giving up still a fully committed affair an intriguing game. King’s Lynn attacking left Forshaw taking the ball on towards the corner of the box, the ball loose Shields sliding in to win the brings Forshaw down. A free kick for King’s Lynn put in on the keeper, Bells claiming well, runners either side of her ready to pounce should the ball be spilled. King’s Lynn with a corner on the right flighted in towards the six yard box Parker up at the near post to clear. Hopkins-Duckhouse gathering 35 yards out right takes on the distance strike the ball caught by Bell.
Ward’s crossing from the right sees the ball deflected behind for a corner kick to King’s Lynn. The delivery finding its way through to Forshaw central inside the box turns into the shot blazes over. Ward retrieves the ball on the left of the area a Forshaw sees a shot blocked following a strong run on the right side put back in across goal cleared by Cooper. Into the closing minutes both sides tired now, determined not to concede whilst trying find a way through. The final whistle blows however and who advances into the quarter finals of the Norfolk Women’s County Cup will be decided on penalties!
I hate penalties as I’ve told you before a monumental effort from both sides but nothing to separate them after 2 hours of football now 5 spots kicks each and then if necessary sudden death.
King’s Lynn up for the 1st penalty captain Becky Russell to take taken well a confident penalty high to the keepers left. 1-0.
Cooper to take Wroxham’s 1st penalty, hit with power low to the keepers right 1-1.
Hopkins-Duckhouse up next taking King’s Lynn’s 2nd penalty. Missed the ball fired over the bar 1-1.
Wroxham captain Anna Larkins to take their 2nd penalty Robinson diving the right way the ball placed well into the bottom corner 1-2.
Forshaw up next for King’s Lynn a confident strike fired low into the bottom right corner 2-2.
Flatt up next for Wroxham she sends her strike over to see it remain all square after 3 penalties each 2-2.
King’s Lynn’s 4th penalty taker is Emma Corbyn scores it as she plays it wide of the diving keeper 3-2.
Parker up next for Wroxham, again Robinson goes the right way the penalty well hit wide of her dive 3-3.
Ward with the 5th penalty for King’s Lynn agony as she sees it fly over the crossbar. 3-3.
A chance for Wroxham to win the shoot-out, Bullard up to take the 5th penalty has to score places it low past the keeper into the corner of the net and wheels around in celebration her teammates racing to join her. 4-3.
Ecstasy for Wroxham, heartbreak for King’s Lynn at the end of the shootout a cruel way to lose a match but it needs to be decided on the day a huge effort from the hosts a real contest more than matched Wroxham. On top for large spells of the game coming back from a goal down to lead only to concede late on. A fully committed contest. The aim of #WomensFootballWeekend to showcase the women’s’ game and it certainly was at The Walks a great advert for the sport watched in front of a good sized crowd. King’s Lynn Town Ladies love a game at The Walks. It’s Wroxham Women though who advance to the quarter finals.
Women’s Football East – Player of the Match
Onto this afternoon’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match a few contenders as is more often the case and entertaining match. Stand out performers for both sides, Becky Russell with a superb strike to fire King’s Lynn into the lead with a strong performance in midfield. An excellent goal too for Tiffany Forshaw to bring the scores level late in the first half a constant threat in attack on the left strong on and off the ball reading the game well. The award though goes to a Wroxham player thought Naomi Cooper was tremendous operating in midfield today lost count of the number of tackles she won get about the pitch making some well timed runs setting up several attacks.
What a game was fantastic entertainment at The Walks this afternoon, a fully committed contest that neither sides deserved to lose a great advert for women’d football in Norfolk and beyond, look forwards to the quarter final draw. My thanks to both clubs for all their assistance today.