Tag Archives: East Bergholt United Ladies

Match Report – Cup Final Special

Tuesday 30th April

Suffolk Women’s League Cup

Needham Market Women v East Bergholt United Ladies

A 2nd final in 3 days with a trip down to Suffolk for their League Cup Final to be contested by league newcomers Needham Market Women and league champions and current holders of the cup East Bergholt United Ladies.

 The Suffolk Women’s Division seeing growth this season with a host of new sides joining the league 12 in total. Needham Market Women pushing East Bergholt all the way in the title race.

A great debut season for Needham Market Women coming together in the summer, the squad building several names familiar having been part of Bacton United Ladies and Coplestonians Ladies. Hit the ground running winning their opening 5 league games matching East Bergholt’s 100% winning start, their 1st league defeat of the season at home to East Bergholt losing narrowly 3-2 Needham market nevertheless bounced back well returning the compliment with a 3-0 win against East Bergholt at the start of March that though East Bergholt’s only defeat, Needham Market losing 3 in total clinching runner-up spot, more success too in the cup competitions reaching both the finals of the League and County Cup to be played on Tues 7th May at Portman Road against Ipswich Town Women. Plenty of goals within the squad over 120 scored Francesca Rainbird top scorer with 33 goals.

  East Bergholt United Ladies completing the double last season unbeaten that year on their way to the title. Their squad a blend of experience and youth players learning their game opted for another season season in Suffolk to further player development rather than move up to the regional league above. Just that one loss to Needham Market blotting their league record this season the other 21 games won. Have applied to the ERWFL for promotion along with Needham Market themselves. Annie Northwood, East Bergholt’s top scorer with 40 goals to her name this season. Both sides growing within the county which ultimately is great for the game with one side dominating for so long.

Road to the Final

 Big away wins for both sides in the opening round of the League Cup, Needham Market scoring 8 without reply against Brettvale Ladies. East Bergholt with over twice that total winning 19-0 against University of Suffolk Women.

Needham Market at home in the quarter finals of the competition taking on Leiston St Margarets Ladies a 5-1 win seeing them into the last 4. East Bergholt progressing without kicking a ball awarded the away win over drawn opponents Woodbridge Town Ladies.

 A strong line-up for the semi-finals of the League Cup contested by the top 4 sides in the league itself, Needham Market away to Alresford Colne Rangers, scoring twice Needham Market secured victory and a cup final appearance in their first season together. East Bergholt away to local rivals Brantham Athletic Ladies. Always a competitive game between the two sides East Bergholt came out on top to win the game 3-1 to reach a 2nd successive League Cup final.

  This evening’s final taking place at Hadleigh United FC. Traffic from Swaffham through Thetford and Bury St Edmund slow going arrived later than I like but nevertheless is a picturesque part of the county. The main carpark already full the gates to the overflow carpark open the field behind the stadium filling up rapidly. A good number already there, the bar open, hot food and drinks available, a small stand filling on the other side of the pitch. A warm evening dry and clear.

Needham Market Women starting – Amber Leeks, Niamh Thomas, Megan Stock (C), Amy Dunn, Maria Smith, Elysia Young, Nicola Henderson, Amber Sparkes, Milly Carter, Francesca Rainbird & Lois Balfour. Subs – Jemma Mortimer, Josie Haward, Amy Trenter, Emily Steward & Jemma Wessels

 East Bergholt United Ladies starting XI – Kimberley Lynch, Harriet Meers, Jess Quinsee, Deben Faiers (C), Georgia Lockerbie, Millie Wilding, Charlotte McGrath, Jess Clarke Cara Savage, Stacey Teager & Annie Northwood. Subs – Katie Bruce, Pippa King, Charlotte Warren, Ellie Nitsche & Isla Romer-Lee.

(roll on roll off substitutes)

A good crowd building prior to kick-off the overflow carpark filling up it’s Needham Market to get this season’s League Cup Final underway kicking off 1st half wearing an all red kit with East Bergholt wearing green coloured shirts with black shorts and socks. Pressing the ball straight away East Bergholt make ground on the left flank winning a couple of throws the final ball played long into the seen out for a goal kick by Needham Market captain Megan Stock. East Bergholt with the ball inside Needham Market’s half early on the ball played back to centre back Georgia Lockerbie she plays it long into the area safely claimed by Needham Market goalkeeper, Amber Leeks.

   Needham Market come left Francesca Rainbird driving on with the ball has support inside from Milly Carter 25 yards out she in turn plays it on central to striker Lois Balfour gets a shot away the ball racing low wide past the right post. Charlotte McGrath getting on the ball in the middle for East Bergholt passes to Cara Savage ahead of her the ball played into striker Stacey Teager she turns in behind her touch a little heavy, a race for it with the Needham market defence, Leeks coming for it but with Teager on her shoulder Amy Dunn clears it for a throw out left.

  Rainbird and Carter looking to get on up the left support from full back Niamh Thomas, Harriet Meers slowing down progress for East Bergholt. Keeping possession Needham market win a free-kick out wide 25 yards out the ball whipped in towards the near post dipping, goalkeeper Kimberly Lynch meeting it on the volley to launch clear of her area. Handball spotted in the middle a free-kick given to East Bergholt the ball put forwards runners after it the ball claimed by Leeks. Rainbird a threat from the start for Needham market on the left picking the ball up and prepared to take players on getting up the line attempts to play the pass inside to Balfour outside the box, Deben Faiers captaining East Bergholt with the interception at the back. 

  Savage right playing the ball forwards Annie Northwood giving chase in behind, Leeks racing out of her area gets to the ball first. Millie Wilding central for East Bergholt out to Northwood making a run into the left channel into the box checks inside before sending a shot over. East Bergholt have the ball left a throw in leading to a cross, Stock winning it at the back for Needham Market. 

  GOAL! East Bergholt making a promising start are hit on the counter Needham Market breaking to open the scoring in the 12th minute. Faiers having played the ball up to Teager in attack Needham Market deal with the bouncing ball putting it on for Rainbird breaking on the left with Balfour coming inside Rainbird shoots from 25 yards out a low ball heading towards goal, Lynch leaving the ball thinking it’s going wide of the near post, to her dismay it creeps inside the post to see Needham Market take the lead 1-0.

Francesca Rainbird with the opening goal for Needham Market Women

East Bergholt with a free-kick wide left inside the Needham Market half Jess Clarke to play it on into the area, Leeks getting her gloves on the ball a split second before being clattered into, down Needham Market’s defence are back quickly to scramble it away. Nicola Henderson combining with Balfour as the pair enter the East Bergholt half the through ball forwards finding Rainbird running clear the flag up against her having gone too early, close mind. 

  Again East Bergholt have a free-kick wide left similar to the previous Clarke lifting the ball long to the far post defended headed out of the area straight to McGrath a touch to set herself then let’s fly with a shot from 20 yards out, safely held by Leeks. Rainbird is the outlet for Needham Market looking to get the ball out left whenever they have possession, a pacy dribbler of the ball her run taking her into the area forcing East Bergholt to concede the corner. Played in from the left central inside the six yard box Lynch up well to get a glove up to clear the danger. Needham Market giving away several free-kicks the East Bergholt bench complaining. 

  East Bergholt getting a corner on the right the deliver dropping near post met turned goalwards Leeks with a reactive save stopping the ball on the line with her legs deflecting it back out to the left put back in the keeper catching it this time. Needham Market make the first change of the game Carter the player coming off on comes Josie Haward. East Bergholt get bodies forwards left a cross delivered into the box, Stock meeting it to clear, Wilding looking to reclaim it outside the box pushed over a free-kick. 20 yards out left of the D Wilding on it goes for the shot over the bar. 

  The ball played on up the right by Amber Sparkes, Balfour and Faiers in a race for it, Lynch out well to the right corner of her area to slide in claim the ball. A corner won on the right East Bergholt bring players forwards the 1st ball in defended near post back with east Bergholt on the right flank the 2nd ball in attacked by Teager and Lockerbie near post the ball headed over the bar. East Bergholt with their first switch of the game Katie Bruce on fr Savage. Build up play on the left McGrath over to support Clarke, Jess Quinsee bombing forwards from full back, Needham Market preventing a cross.

  Needham Market with a free-kick on the left played into the box, McGrath back defending heading the ball out of the area drops straight to Rainbird positioned top of the D, her shot whistling over the crossbar. Half an hour played a 2nd change for East Bergholt Wilding the player off on comes Charlotte Warren. Faiers and Lockerbie winning the ball as Needham Market look to get Balfour away in behind, Rainbird and Sparkes getting on up the wings. Another free-kick awarded Faiers adjudged to have brought down Balfour 30 yards out looked a tangle of legs. Balfour on the set-piece a great ball in on target, Lynch with a terrific save the merest of touches to tip the ball onto the bar and away behind for the corner. Lynch up at her back post making a confident claim from the corner.

Kimberly Lynch making the save

  Northwood with a shot 25 yards out left sends it wide across the box. Elysia Young putting the ball on for Rainbird to chase into the box keeping it in play Lockerbie gets across to tackle. Young into an advanced position supporting Rainbird attacking left the pass squared to Young looks to play Balfour into the box, Faiers reading it cutting the ball out for East Bergholt. 

 GOAL! Less than five minutes of the 1st half left to play East Bergholt break away to score the equaliser, McGrath getting hold of the ball on halfway with a fantastic ball forwards, the Needham Market defence static as Northwood breaks in behind no flag runs on into the box one on one with the keeper Leeks staying big, Northwood putting the ball wide of her left to find the back of the net 1-1.

  Rainbird full of running making a nuisance of herself pressing the east Bergholt defence 25 yards out the ball popping loose to Young getting forwards she sees a shot drop wide of the mark. Ellie Nitsche entering the game late in the first half for East Bergholt as they press the attack late on. The ball played right sees Leeks beaten as she comes for it the ball cleared away by the back tracking defence, light fading fast the half-time whistle blows. All square at the break.

Half-time Needham Market Women 1-1 East Bergholt United Ladies

  An entertaining first half a vocal crowd spurring both sides on the best attendance I’ve seen for a Suffolk Women’s League Cup Final, 400 plus. East Bergholt with the early pressure, Needham Market though with the early goal however. Working hard in defence East Bergholt getting more players forwards when they attack, Rainbird a threat on the left wing looking to create something more often than not. East Bergholt drawing level late in the first half. set up perfectly for the 2nd period, the lights on now.

 Needham Market with a change at the start of the 2nd half Emily Steward on for Balfour in attack. East Bergholt to get the 2nd half underway. Straight on the attack the ball pushed on through the middle Nitsche looking to race away in behind the Needham Market centre backs close Maria Smith putting in the challenge the ball scrambled away. East Bergholt pressing high the ball won inside the final 3rd lifted into the area right side six yards out Stock grappling with Teager to win the ball comes straight to Nitsche outside the box a shot struck back in pace and power smashes against the crossbar!

GOAL! East Bergholt capitalising on their fast start to the 2nd half the ball played in through the middle sees Nitsche burst clear of the defence this time carrying it into the area she slot a shot past the keeper to put East Bergholt into the lead. 2-1.

A sluggish start to the 2nd half from Needham market not switched on, Sparkes looking to get an attack going on the right, Quinsee in to make the challenge a corner conceded. Lockerbie defending the ball put in to the near post area. Young with the ball at her feet 20 yards out sees a shot charged down. A corner won for Needham Market on the left the ball defended near post back with the taker up the line top of the area rolled inside to Henderson she has a go driving a shot wide.

Needham Market’s Nicola Henderson

East Bergholt get Teager away left side to attack the box, Leeks out to meet her sliding in the ball not claimed Teager spotting Nitsche free 25 yards out central drags a shot wide. East Bergholt keeping a closer watch on Rainbird the ball not getting to her as much as it did in the first half. Clarke with Bruce and McGrath closing the ball down well further up the pitch. Lynch confident as she rushes out to the right of her box to slide in a claim the ball with Sparkes attacking.

East Bergholt United Ladies, Charlotte McGrath

Nitsche lively in attack causing Needham Market a few problems away on the right sends a ball into Teager top of the area catching it first time deflects it towards goal, straight at Leeks. Changes for both sides Carter back on for Needham Market. Isla Romer-Lee on for East Bergholt.  Dunn defending an East Bergholt free-kick played into the box. A fluid attacking move from East Bergholt as they come very close to adding a 3rd goal. Starting with McGrath central on to Nitsche linking with Teager 25 yards out the ball out to Romer-Lee int space right lays the ball back into the middle for McGrath driving on into the box she shoots putting the ball across the keeper runs narrowly wide of the post.

Romer-Lee cutting inside from the right passing to Nitsche she tries to pick out Teager at the far post, Thomas defending for Needham Market. McGrath with another storming midfield run into the box, Dunn shielding the ball out for the goal kick. An injury blow for Needham Market as Stock going up to win an aerial challenge, lands awkwardly appearing to twist her knee, clearly in alot of pain the trainer on straight away play stopped as she requires lengthy treatment, wearing a knee brace is in alot of pain. Up gingerly cannot continue Jemma Mortimer heading on to take her place in the back line. 

  A double change for East Bergholt, Wilding returning to the field along with Pippa King on for Teager. Carter linking with Rainbird as they get forwards on the left the latter crossing to Steward out towards the far post she looks to cushion it down for Carter central, the defence intercepting and getting it away for East Bergholt. King with the ball attacking left high into the box for Nitsche 8 yards out connects with the ball not enough on it to beat Leeks in goal. East Bergholt with alot more of the attack 2nd half, Needham Market pushed back defending just the one goal in it still. 

  Savage back on for East Bergholt, Jemma Wessels on in place of Carter for Needham Market. The final entering the last 10 minutes. A free-kick won on the left as Rainbird is brought down outside the area, Wessels on it plays the ball long to the far post Lynch up well reaching up to make the claim caught lands heavily but okay. East Bergholt counter attack Romer-Lee clear on the right a Needham Market commit players forwards busting into the area she puts the ball low across the keeper her shot coming back off the base of the post.

  Amy Trenter on for Needham Market. East Bergholt strong late on winning the midfield battle McGrath breaking it on. Northwood back on for Nitsche as Needham Market are forced back late on, Smith tackling to regain possession inside her box. Rainbird getting away left into the corner playing a cross into the area Faiers back in her six yard box winning the header. The final whistle blows and East Bergholt celebrate winning the League Cup and completing the double for a 2nd successive season.

Full time Needham Market Women 2-1 East Bergholt United Ladies

   An entertaining final watched by a passionate and supportive crowd a good atmosphere and close result between the sides. All square after the 1st half, East Bergholt had much more of the attack in the 2nd period pressing the ball higher and preventing the ball getting into Needham Markets attacking players scoring early in the 2nd half a 3rd goal would have made thing’s more comfortable but it din’t come, Needham Market though unable to find a clinical goal scoring chance up the other end. 

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

 Onto this evenings Women’s Football East – Player of the Match. A few performances of note, firstly for Needham Market, Francesca Rainbird was a constant threat especially in the first half. Megan Stock captain marshalling her defence well making some important tackles. For East Bergholt Ellie Nitsche was a danger in attack pacy with great movement and positional sense. The award though goes to East Bergholt’s Charlotte McGrath the midfield superb throughout the game winning the ball centrally, setting up attacks some fantastic runs forwards.

East Bergholt United Ladies, 2018/19 Suffolk Women’s League Cup winners (picture East Bergholt United Ladies)

  Congratulations to East Bergholt United Ladies on this evenings success and completing the double double.

  Arriving late at the ground I didn’t feel prepared but the help I got from both sides plus Mandy from the Suffolk Girls & Women’s Football league plus a cheeseburger put me at ease, a busy start to the week 2 finals in 3 days both thoroughly enjoyable however, tired now but next up it’s 4 finals in 4 days! As daunting as that sounds I’m really looking forwards to it. Thanks to all for their help this evening. 

Match Report – Needham Market Women v East Bergholt United Ladies

Sunday 21st October

Suffolk Women’s Division

  Another top of the table clash from the Suffolk Women’s Division this Sunday on Women’s Football East, the top 2 meeting both starting the season with a 100% win rate, new comers Needham Market Women leading the table hosting East Bergholt United Ladies the defending Champions.

The Suffolk Women’s Division expending this season with an influx of new sides, 13 in total for the 2018/19 campaign with 7 of those new names along with Alresford Colne Rangers who move to the league having previously competed in Essex.

  Needham Market Women starting by far the better of all the newcomers. 5 wins from 5 to start the season their 100% winning start seeing them 3 points clear at the top from East Bergholt United Ladies and Brantham Athletic Ladies who have both started with 4 successive victories. A part of Needham Market FC’s Academy set up. Have bolstered their squad bringing in some ex-Bacton United Ladies players that already have experience playing in the Women’s Division. Today’s match representing the toughest challenge Needham Market have experienced so far.

   If Needham Market are to get the win this afternoon than they will have to do something no one else has so far this season and that is breach the East Bergholt United Ladies defence. Did the double last season winning the league and cup. An unbeaten season too. A great start to the season as they look to defend their title. Are the team to beat know and that brings a different aspect to the squads development, a large squad backed up by an U18s side. Not conceding a goal in their opening 4 matches East Bergholt United have scored 41 goals up the other end including a 19-0 over new side University of Suffolk (albeit their opponents short on numbers on the day). Always likely to score from midfield have added Stacey Teager to their attack, regularly amongst the goals for former club AFC Sudbury Ladies.

  Bloomfield’s the venue for this afternoon’s match home of Needham Market FC. The main pitch looking pristine, a clubhouse with bar and hot food leading to it. A new 3G pitch beside the main pitch, a good size, building work ongoing to improve facilities for the Academy. Room for spectators down one side aswell and behind one goal. A glorious sunny afternoon late in October in stark contrast the miserable wet Sunday just gone. Bright sun low in the sky would pose a few issues during the game. Another game on the 3G before the women’s teams could get onto it and warm-up little time for East Bergholt to get used to the new surface before kick-off.

Needham Market Women’s starting XI – Natalie Green, Charley Mussellwhite, Jemma Mortimer, Maria Smith, Megan Stock (C), Isobel Chaplin, Milly Carter, Francesca Rainbird, Eboni-Mae Shepherd, Abbie Wilkinson & Lois Balfour. Subs – Jemma Wessels, Megan Davies, Josie Harward & Freya Louis.

East Bergholt United Ladies starting XI – Kimberley Lynch, Harriet Meers, Jess Quinsee, Katy Lambert, Georgia Lockerbie (C), Millie Wilding, Jess Clark, Charlotte McGrath, Katie Bruce, India Griffin-Jenkins & Stacey Teager. Subs – Deben Faiers, Elena Nitsche & Isla Romer-Lee.

(roll on roll off substitutes)

It’s the home side to kick-off the 1st half, Needham Market wearing red shirts with yellow trim, red shorts and socks. East Bergholt United with the sun at their backs 1st half wearing green shirts with white trim, black shorts and socks. Jess Quinsee defending at left back for East Bergholt as Needham Market look to play in Eboni-Mae Shepherd on the right. Look to get the ball on down the left themselves, Charley Mussellwhite defending putting the ball out of play for Needham Market. 

  Building through the middle the ball up to Abbie Wilkinson, the Needham Market number 10 holding the ball up as midfielder Milly Carter gets up in support to her right the pass into her feet Carter puts the low diagonal ball through to Lois Balfour making a run into the box left of the D the pass weighted perfectly she strikes the ball goalwards past East Bergholt goalkeeper, Kimberly Lynch as she throws herself into the dive the ball strikes the base of the post the rebound back out into the middle of the six yard box, Lynch twisting pouncing on the ball.

    Millie Wilding makes a run on the right wing the long diagonal pass reaching her taking it down the line no way past Jemma Mortimer as the left back closes her down the deflected ball cut back into the path of Charlotte McGrath as she bursts forwards into the area the sliding challenge coming in as she goes to shoot the ball deflected up and behind for the corner. A good delivery in from the right cutting through the box no one can get a telling touch on the ball to turn it towards goal. 

Needham Market Women’s, Lois Balfour

   A free-kick awarded to East Bergholt 30 yards out, Jess Clarke over the ball, takes on the shot, the sun at her back, going to be tricky for the goalkeeper, dips late, Natalie Green back on her line as the ball hits her crossbar before going out of play. Good combination play between McGrath and Wilding releasing Stacey Teager down the right channel, attempting to get inside the area is adjudged to have fouled the defender tracking back with her. Francesca Rainbird picks up the ball for Needham Market on halfway a powerful run forwards coming in field from the left looks to try and lift the ball in behind the East Bergholt defence with Wilkinson ready to go, Georgia Lockerbie wearing the captains armband for East Bergholt lifting her leg to make a vital interception. 

Needham Market Women’s, Eboni-Mae Shepherd

  A lively start to the game, Needham Market settling the quicker. Carter getting herself about in midfield winning the ball willing runners ahead of her. Isobel Chaplin sliding in takes the ball as Katie Bruce moves forwards. The ball forwards Wilkinson giving chase, Lockerbie across to tackle for East Bergholt. A change for Needham Market, Chaplin coming off on comes Josie Harward. Lynch’s goalkick is long finding Teager the striker heading the ball on with Bruce making a run in behind her, Needham Market captain, Megan Stock coming over to challenge the ball puts it out for a throw on the left. 

Megan Stock winning the header for Needham Market.

   Is a big 3G pitch plenty of space to exploit if players are drawn across, Shepherd puts the ball forwards into the middle, both Balfour and Wilkinson making runs, Katy Lambert intercepting this time for East Bergholt.

  GOAL! 18 minutes gone and the East Bergholt defence is breached for the 1st time this season as Needham Market take the lead. Pressing the ball in midfield Carter with a pass forwards into Balfour positioned  outside the area left of the D, controls the ball shaping to hit the shot on the volley, miscues her attempt, turns into a fantastic assist as the ball rolls on further to the left into the path of Rainbird closing in on goal she shoots, Lynch coming to close the angle gets something on the ball but not enough to prevent Rainbird scoring as she peels away in celebration 1-0.

Francesca Rainbird scorer of the opening goal for Needham Market Women

   East Bergholt look to get players forwards from the restart, Needham Market break Rainbird on the ball running on left 25 out shapes to shot the ball striking her own player in it’s way through the deflection turning it up and over the bar for the goal kick. East Bergholt build well through the middle Clark with support from Bruce and Indian Griffin-Jenkins before the final pass is slide on through for Teager bursting into the area, a shooting chance denied by the offside flag. 

  The visitors overload the right side players drawn across as Wilding picks up possession squares along the top of the area Teager central can’t bring down Mussellwhite doing well to get the ball clear with Clark free coming in around the back. Changes for both sides, Jemma Wessels entering the action for Needham Market replacing Shepherd. A double change for East Bergholt, Isla Romer-Lee and Elena Nitsche on for Wilding and Griffin-Jenkins. Nitsche straight into action as she is played in on the right taking the ball on cuts the cross back into the box Teager hitting it first time central her effort blocked spins on for Romer-Lee behind her her shot running wide of the far post.

Quinsee getting forwards from the back for East Bergholt is tackled by Wessels. The favour returned a few moments later as Wessels tries to get in behind down the wing. McGrath doing well in the middle for East Bergholt breaking up play disrupting Needham Market’s quick build-up play. Clark finding room too for the visitors. McGrath n to put in the tackle winning the ball in the middle puts it long for Romer-Lee down the left a fierce cross fired into the area both Teager and Nitsche attacking it far post both jumping neither can get a touch. 

Jess Clark with the header for East Bergholt.

 East Bergholt finishing the 1st half strong pushing players on, Mussellwhite with good defensive work up against Romer-Lee as she tries to get inside her on the left. Harriet Meers coming inside to support Lambert in defence cuts out Rainbird’s forward pass. Clark in space in the middle spots Romer-Lee breaking into the left channel the ball put on into her run she shoots from outside the area the ball running wide of the post. 

Half-time Needham Market Women 1-0 East Bergholt United Ladies

   A competitive 1st half Needham Market starting well an early shot against the post, took the lead on 18 minutes, Francesca Rainbird the first player to score against East Bergholt this season. Pressing the ball took a little while for East Bergholt to settle but signs were building towards the end of the half they were likely to find a reply. Beautifully poised for the 2nd half.

Katie Bruce holding the ball up for East Bergholt

  East Bergholt to kick-off the 2nd half no changes for either side at the break. East Bergholt starting the 2nd half well pressing forwards, Romer-lee left with Bruce ahead of her picking her out she plays the ball inside to McGrath who releases Nitsche on the right side cutting inside her cross is charged down. East Bergholt keep possession in the final 3rd, McGrath laying the ball back for Clark who takes on the strike from distance the ball landing inside the area claimed by Green.

   Play stretched even this early in the 2nd half with East Bergholt prepared to commit players forwards Needham Market came counter if the can get the ball into their attackers. Rainbird with the ball left cuts inside a good run plays it forwards for Balfour right side outside the box her cross back in towards the far post as she tries to pick out Carter breaking from the middle, Meers needs to and wins it for East Bergholt. 

  Teager holding the ball up for East Bergholt as players get up to support her McGrath receiving the ball puts on on for Nitsche bursting into the area from the right, Smith doing really well up against her in her own six yard box right of goal as she slides in to deny the shot and put the ball out for a corner kick. A fantastic ball in from the right side the penalty box congested the ball met at the far post Teager I think getting her head on the ball driven in towards goal blocked on the line by Mortimer before being scrambled away for a 2nd corner. Put in towards the top of the area this time is met well by Lockerbie striking it goalwards in through bodies it’s Mortimer to the rescue again her foot stopping the ball from crossing the line. 

   Needham Market pressed at the back get the ball forwards away down the right played into Rainbird making a central run free for a moment aims to drag the ball across her before shooting, Lockerbie recovering well to get back to close Rainbird down the ball spinning away off the defender for a corner. It’s East Bergholt’s time to clear the ball off the line, as the ball in is attacked near post.

  East Bergholt’s time to break forwards Nitsche right into Romer-Lee central 20 yards out lines up a shot the ball driven in towards goal strikes the bar, Green may well have gotten a touch on it too. Carter getting into an advanced position for Needham Market pulls the trigger from the top of the area right side her effort running low past the far post. Good running from McGrath coming right on for Nitsche down the line a good cross into the six yard box claimed well by Green before Romer-Lee can attack it running in from the left. Teager coming deeper for the ball turns putting it on for Nitsche right side cuts into the box, Stock getting back with a good tackle stops her. 

  Clark over a free-kick for East Bergholt as the referee brings play back with no advantage, 30 yards out central, Clark takes on the shot her attempt over the crossbar. Nitsche a threat on the right for East Bergholt making good runs has the ball at her feet lays the cross back into the middle for the advancing McGrath striking the ball from 20 yards out it bounces out wide past the far post. Needham Market are under pressure pushed back getting the ball forwards into their attackers isn’t easy. Lambert intercepting an attempted through ball. A change for East Bergholt, Bruce coming off Wilding coming back on. 

 GOAL! The equalising goal has been coming East Bergholt have been turning the screw comes from a strike from distance, Clark onto the ball, sends an effort in towards goal, Green trying to get to it can’t keep in out 1-1.

Jess Clark with the equalising goal for East Bergholt

   East Bergholt press straight from the restart winning the ball, drive on, Teager onto the ball a powerful run towards the box, Stock doing very well up against her. Clark with another opportunity to have a shot at goal from a set-piece a free-kick awarded 25 yards out right of centre, curls a shot in looping towards goal, Green getting across to it pushes it behind conceding the corner. 

  GOAL! No sooner have they equalised then East Bergholt go on to take the lead in the match the goal coming from the corner on the right an inswinging ball is defended on the line by Needham Market pushed out into the box the ball comes to Lockerbie positioned at the top of the area just inside she meets it well driving the ball back in and this time no-one cane stop it as it nestles in the back of the net 1-2.

   East Bergholt on top pressing the ball in the final third Needham Market with their backs to the wall defending deep a corner given away on the left. In towards the near post Lockerbie gets on the end of it headers over. Teager strong on the ball is fouled inside the D, Needham Market slow to close her down. Teager to take it as Clark is otherwise indisposed the striker putting the ball over. The visitors looking strong now as Needham Market struggle to regroup after falling behind. McGrath on for Wilding central attempts to loft the ball in towards the far post area with Romer-Lee making a run the ball going away from her out of play. 

 GOAL! East Bergholt press their advantage enjoying a purple patch add a 3rd goal attacking on the left the ball lifted forwards into the box with Nitsche racing in behind through the middle six yards out the ball landing in front of her holds off a defender opening her body to side foot the ball wide of the keeper and score 1-3.

  Needham Market make a change, Chaplin back on coming into the defence with Smith pushed on into the midfield. Need to get forwards Carter on the ball, Rainbird and Wessels offering support on the left the ball helped on Wilkinson flagged offside. Into the final 15 minutes. Wilding shooting from distance central the ball safely held by Green. East Bergholt make a change Nitsche coming off, Griffin-Jenkins back on. Needham Market attack getting forwards well right side the cross fired in near post Rainbird there to attack in Mussellwhite doing well closing her down.

  Balfour twisting and turning with the ball through the middle finds half a yard to shoot from 25 yards out her attempt dropping wide of goal. Harward comes off for Needham Market, Shepherd back on. A throw on the right for Needham Market inside the East Bergholt half put into Wilkinson she turns and shoots from outside the area Lynch down low to gather at her near post. 

  The game has taken alot out of both side, East Bergholt are tiring late on have been intense in the 2nd half, Needham Market pushed back come forwards now play stretched Rainbird getting forwards to support Balfour on the left, Meers across to defend for East Bergholt.

  GOAL! The ball kept by Needham Market on the left brings the home side a 2nd goal, Rainbird putting it back up the line as Mortimer gets forwards to support the fullback playing it inside Rainbird in the meantime breaking into the box is seen the pass cutting open the East Bergholt defence, Rainbird throws herself at the ball her lunge putting the ball wide across the keeper an in to the back of the net 2-3.

  Not much time left but Needham Market have found an extra reserve of energy with the goal the game is open now having been pushed back for much of the 2nd half the home side press forwards risk getting hit on the counter sense they might be able to yet to get something from the game. Rainbird their main threat her ball in from the left cut out by Lockerbie. Quinsee bringing the ball out from the back for the visitors however he forward pass for Romer-Lee sees the flag raised. 

  Is some tired defending at the end East Bergholt have put alot into the 2nd half, Wilkinson driving on, Lambert closing her down. the visitors counter Romer-Lee left side her cross into the area deflecting off Mussellwhite falls for Teager back to goal lays it off for the onrushing Wilding connects with the ball 20 yards out the effort whistling over the bar. The last action of the game East Bergholt making it 5 out of 5 go top of the table.

Full time Needham Market Women 2-3 East Bergholt United Ladies

  Is a 3 ways tie at the top now East Bergholt with the superior goal difference, Needham Market taste defeat for the first time this season whilst Brantham Athletic Ladies receive a home win to keep up their 100%. 13 teams in the league however a long way to go. An entertaining contest played with some enjoyable late October sunshine. Needham Market starting well taking the lead 1-0. East Bergholt building momentum late in the 1st half kept going 2nd half pressing the ball in the final third shooting from distance got level then very quickly took the lead, Needham market slow to respond the visitors going further in front, Needham Market getting a goal back late on but East Bergholt went on to claim the 3 points.

  The defending champions looking good after 5 games, know there is still a long way to go. Needham Market showing plenty of potential will only get better.

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

  Time for this afternoon’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match. Sometimes a contender will emerge early on in a match and it’s a case of seeing if they maintain that level of performance. There were two this afternoon that caught the eye both for East Bergholt and it was a tough decision picking one out over the other, getting forwards into space and a threat from set-pieces Jess Clark stood out getting a goal too. Just edging it though for me was central midfield partner Charlotte McGrath. Played well throughout winning the ball getting across the park, setting up others and offering support with some well timed runs through the middle today’s award goes to the East Bergholt number 10.

  An enjoyable trip out to Bloomfield’s this afternoon, the bright sunshine no doubt helping a good crowd in attendance too. Is a great facility and by the looks of the development will only get better. My thanks to both sides for their help with the teams always appreciated.

Cup Final Report – AFC Kesgrave Ladies v East Bergholt United Ladies

Suffolk Women’s League Cup Final

Tuesday 1st May

  A busy week of cup finals this week begins this Tuesday with a trip to Suffolk to watch the Women’s League Cup Final with AFC Kesgrave Ladies playing East Bergholt United Ladies.

  A cup final appearance in their debut season for AFC Kesgrave Ladies a young squad making the step up to adult football this season. Hit the ground running winning there opening 2 matches. A run of losses then followed progress in the cup regaining some form has been up and down since with 6 wins from 15 played are comfortable in mid-table as the squad gains experience in the league.

  East Bergholt United Ladies are into their 2nd successive Suffolk Women’s League Cup Final, beaten by Ipswich Town Ladies Development as they secured a league and cup double last season. The League Cup Final ending goalless went all the way to penalties and heartbreak for East Bergholt United as they went down 5-4 in the shootout. Are on course for a league and cup double themselves this season topping the Suffolk Women’s Division all season won their opening 9 games, a run of 4 successive draws following giving the chasing pack a chance to close the gap returning to winning ways last time out away to Leiston St Margarets are ahead on goal difference with 2 games left to play in the league an important week coming up. In action just 48 hours ago winning 7-0 at home to Coplestonians Ladies 

Road to the Final

  Both sides were handed a bye in the 1st Round to progress to the quarter finals of the League Cup. AFC Kesgrave were drawn at home up against Ipswich Athletic Ladies, a goal from Ashley Bustos along with a brace for Daisy Starsmoore in the 1st half seeing the club through to the last four of the competition. East Bergholt United starting the season with 4 successive wins took that form into the quarter finals of the League Cup where they were drawn away to another side with title ambitions Walsham Le Willow Ladies a close game a single goal settling the contest  scored in the first half by East Bergholt’s Charlotte McGrath.

 Onto the semi-finals, AFC Kesgrave were away to Coplestonians Ladies, goals from Bustos and Starsmoore along with Jade Fox securing a 3-0 victory to secure a final spot for the club in their debut season in the Suffolk Women’s Division. East Bergholt United were at home in the semi-finals another tricky looking tie against Bacton United Ladies who have been on their heels in the league all season. A brace from Jessica Clarke with a goal each for Annie Northwood and Millie Wilding seeing East Bergholt United into their 2nd successive final.

  Brantham Leisure Centre the venue for this evening’s final home of Brantham Athletic FC a sports field adjoining the main pitch overlooked by a large clubhouse and bar. Hot food and drink available, needed fuel and they did a very nice cheeseburger. The pitch a good size a small covered seated stand behind the dugouts and another at the end of one end. Rained all day Monday and I did wonder if this evenings final would be on but today has been much better drying thing’s out overcast but mild.

AFC Kesgrave Ladies starting XI – Jade Fox (C), Felicity Cooper, Jade Marsh, Lauren Godbold, Georgia Lane, Daisy Starsmoore, Georgia Clarke, Lina Nagid, Imogen O’Sullivan, Issy McCartney & Ashley Bustos. Subs – Christy Fraser.

East Bergholt United Ladies starting XI – Kimberley Lynch, Harriet Meers, Emily Lambert, Deben Faiers, Millie Wilding, Georgina Longden (C), Charlotte Warren, Charlotte McGrath, Jess Quinsee, Georgia Lockerbie & Annie Northwood. Subs – Holly Prior, Pippa King, Jess Oxlade & Cara Savage. 

(roll on roll off substitutes)

 It’s East Bergholt to get the match underway kicking off 1st half wearing green shirts with black shorts and socks. Kesgrave lined up opposite wearing red and blue vertical striped shirts with blue shorts and socks. Moving the ball forwards Kesgrave look to press East Bergholt early on the ball played out to the left for Jess Quinsee to chase, Kesgrave defend see the ball out for a throw. Kesgrave attack up the left winning a throw the ball played on into the area Deben Faiers defending for East Bergholt as Georgia Clarke and Imogen O’Sullivan look to attack the ball top of the area. 

    East Bergholt look to release their wide players, Quinsee left, Georgia Lockerbie on the right. Lauren Godbold stepping out of the back line for Kesgrave to tackle Quinsee as she cuts inside looking to drive towards the area. O’Sullivan attacks as she runs the ball down on the right a crunching tackle from Faiers the deflected ball running to Lina Nagid for Kesgrave 20 yards out left corner of the box shifts it inside one touch and shoots her rising effort wide of the top corner. 

  A bright start from Kesgrave. East Bergholt quick to turn play around. Kesgrave with a free kick on half way the ball played forwards Nagid running clear in behind East Bergholt goalkeeper Kimberly Lynch coming to the edge of her area stays big does enough to as Nagid gets a shot away her strike placed wide of the post.

 GOAL! Kesgrave capitalise on their good start to the final getting forwards up the right win a throw in high up the pitch move it quickly players drawn across the cross comes in towards the top of the area O’Sullivan is there the ball into her path the keeper comes, the ball sent past her into the back of the net 1-0.

   Plenty of pace in the Kesgrave side. Lose possession on the left Quinsee breaking forwards is brought down a free-kick. Players up from the back for East Bergholt the delivery into the top of the area, Godbold defending for Kesgrave. The ball is won back on the left Quinsee with the shot driving the ball in from 25 yards out, Jade Fox in goal for Kesgrave right behind it claims the ball. Lockerbie wide right pushes forwards for East Bergholt she is tackled by Jade Marsh.  

GOAL! East Bergholt get themselves back on level terms attacking down the right the ball out for a throw deep inside the Kesgrave half the ball controlled and a low cross fired across the face of the goal, Quinsee there her 1st time shot initially blocked by the diving keeper is still active a scramble across the goalmouth, Quinsee gets it across the line to level the scores 1-1.

GOAL! No sooner are East Bergholt back on level terms they take the lead and it’s Quinsee once again on the scoresheet. The attack beginning with Annie Northwood driving through the middle stopped by the Kesgrave defence the ball kept by East Bergholt put out to Quinsee left side she takes it forwards shooting from the angle as she arrives in the area the ball racing past the keeper at the near post 2-1.

East Bergholt starting to get into their stride Charlotte McGrath in the middle of the park winning the ball looking to put Quinsee away on the left, Kesgrave intercepting the intended through ball. A double change for East Bergholt, Pippa King and Cara Savage coming on Quinsee and Northwood. King with an opportunity to shoot straight away her 20 yard effort taking a deflection out for a corner. A good delivery into the six yard box after a scramble for the ball Kesgrave get it to safety. Lockerbie with a header on looks to get into the area, Fox can come off her line to gather the ball. 

A change for Kesgrave, Christy Fraser on for Clarke. Nagid looks a threat for Kesgrave picking up the ball inside the East Bergholt half and taking it forwards Faiers coming towards her to put in the challenge win the ball back. Play turned around rapidly Lockerbie wanting it on the right. Felicity Cooper coming across to tackle her. A throw on the right the cross fired into the area a shot right side pulled wide of the post. Emily Lambert on for Charlotte Warren the pass forwards looking to release Savage in behind on the left Issy McCartney getting to it first for Kesgrave.  

GOAL! Half an hour played East Bergholt go further in front. Savage with the goal picking the ball up on the left a strong run forwards letting fly from distance the low shot racing across the keeper into the bottom corner of the net 3-1. 

Ashley Bustos getting forwards for Kesgrave evades Faiers tackle the pass on for Nagid, Millie Wilding winning the ball back for East Bergholt. Harriet Meers breaks up a Kesgrave attack at right back her ball into the middle for Longden play spread out to Savage tackled the ball out for a throw wide left a change for Kesgrave O’Sullivan off Clarke back on. Lockerbie links up with King as East Bergholt attack playing a one two the cross into the area claimed by the keeper. 

East Bergholt are strong through the middle Warren on for McGrath her pass forwards for King op of the area the ball defended runs to the right King seeing another attempt charged down. Nagid with a twisting run through the middle McCartney breaking ahead of her on the left the pass intercepted by Meers. Faiers in again to tackle Nagid as she comes forwards through the middle. 

  Nagid keeps probing through the middle a good run takes on the shot her effort stopped by Wilding almost puts Bustos in on goal inside the area on the follow up pounces on the loose ball Lynch diving at her feet reacts quickly to lay claim to the ball six yards out. McGrath with good combination play linking with Lockerbie right side progress down the right Cooper coming to support Marsh Kesgrave concede the throw in. Northwood returning to the field for Longden. 

 East Bergholt dominating late into the 1st half bodies up and around the Kesgrave area, no final shot. Kesgrave break forwards Bustos fouled in front of the centre circle. Players come forwards as the ball is played up into the box Wilding with the header the ball falling into the area Cooper central with the snap shot the strike wide of goal. 

Half-time AFC Kesgrave Ladies 1-3 East Bergholt United Ladies

  3-1 lead for East Bergholt as the referee brings the 1st half to a close. Kesgrave lively from the start taking an early lead East Bergholt finding a quick reply turning the game completely around to lead moments later. Have looked a threat using the wide players well stretching play. Kesgrave far from out of it have the pace to counter attack and create chances. East Bergholt extending the lead. A two goal advantage Kesgrave can put pressure on if they score early 2nd half.

   Kesgrave to get the 2nd half underway. Pushing on win a corner early on in the 2nd period. A great delivery towards the far post dropped inviting the header duly obliged the ball put up and over the crossbar. Northwood played in on the left side attacks for East Bergholt the sliding tackle coming in the ball won back. Northwood getting hold of the ball for a Kesgrave goalkick plays it back across the top of the area Lockerbie sending a ball into the area McGrath with the run can’t quite get on the end of it. 

GOAL! The early goal comes 2nd half unfortunately for Kesgrave it goes against them East Bergholt taking advantage from a slip on halfway as Kesgrave are awarded a free-kick the ball pounced on by Northwood a fantastic diagonal ball to the right releasing Lockerbie in behind lets fly form 25 yards out her strike past the keeper to make it 4-1.

A few times in the match East Bergholt have gotten the ball out wide getting into a good crossing position the ball coming into the area no one has gambled through the middle Kesgrave able to clear the ball without challenge. Nagid has taken a knock for Kesgrave comes off. King puts an effort on goal wide as she attempts to lob the keeper after she goalkick comes straight to her 25 yards out. 

  A triple switch for East Bergholt, Meers, McGrath and Lockerbie off on come Holly Prior, Jess Oxlade and Quinsee returning to the field. East Bergholt looking the more dominant side push players forwards. A long ball forwards from the middle sees Clarke head the ball out wide to O’Sullivan she attacks trying to get into the area, Faiers with the tackle putting the ball out for a throw. Nagid returns to the field for Kesgrave, Clarke giving way. Northwood getting away clear on the left her ball inside the box to Oxlade she lays it back for Savage, Cooper closing her down. 

GOAL! Sustained possession on the right from East Bergholt wins them a corner kick the six yard box crowded as the ball in swung in high dropping across the face of goal Savage with the bullet header to bury the ball into the back of the net claims her 2nd of the final 5-1 the lead with a little over 20 minutes to play. 

GOAL! East Bergholt continue to press forwards savage winning the ball the pass on for Northwood on the left comes inside stopped on the edge of the area. Wilding with the tackle up the other end 20 yards out as Nagid is played on through the middle for Kesgrave. A double save with her leg for the Kesgrave keeper stopping a driven shot fired in from the right side, deflected back out into area Oxlade closed down by McCartney gets a shot away again the keeper saves with her leg the ball cleared out of the area Kesgrave loosing their shape as East Bergholt press on the ball won back is with Savage is a long way out the keeper out of position fires it back in an unorthodox strike but effective as it loops up and drops into the back of the net, a Cup Final hat-trick for Savage 6-1.

Savage is brought off soon after along with King, Longden and McGrath returning. Faiers gets forwards with the ball from the back for East Bergholt has a shot her effort over from 25 yards. Northwood comes close to getting a goal for East Bergholt as she is played in behind through the middle her rising strike inside the box right of goal kissing the woodwork on it’s way out. Alice Longden comes on for East Bergholt replacing Wilding. 

Late into the game Kesgrave tiring haven’t the subs to bring on like their opponents aren’t able to keep the ball as East Bergholt continue to press bodies on. Into the final 10 minutes. McCartney given time and room in the middle gets a shot away for Kesgrave, Lynch behind it all the way in the East Bergholt goal. Northwood put in the clear on the left shoots from the angle the ball whipping wide across the goal face. Nagid with Bustos on the left get forwards the shot driven in wide of the near post. 

GOAL! Quinsee is brought down on the right as she threatens to run in behind clear to attack the goal. A free-kick in a dangerous position 20 yards out right corner of the box, Georgina Longden to take a great strike it flies in a foot under the cross bar to bring up East Bergholt’s 7th goal 7-1.

   Into stoppage time East Bergholt on top Quinsee attacking on the right brought down once again. Kesgrave able to defend the set piece this time. The final whistle blows and East Bergholt claim their 1st trophy winning the Suffolk Women’s League Cup.

Full time AFC Kesgrave Ladies 1-7 East Bergholt United Ladies

  A much better feeling for East Bergholt this time around after last season’s penalty heart ache. 7-1 the winning score a dominant performance once they got into their stride rotating their players frequently. Finding space out wide and recovering from an early set-back. Kesgrave buoyed by their start certainly have talent within their squad, pace good movement will improve 3-1 down at half -time conceding the 4th goal early in the 2nd half was a cruel blow and East Bergholt took full advantage. Never the less Kesgrave should be proud to have reached a Cup Final in their debut season in the Suffolk Women’s Division.

 The League Cup won the double still very much on. Rivals Walsham Le Willows and Bacton United Ladies also playing tonight a 2-1 win for Bacton puts them 3 points behind East Bergholt with one each left to play. Walsham Le Willows are now 8 point behind with 3 to play, East Begholt’s final league game is away to Walsham Le Willows on Sunday 13th May. 

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

  A good all round performance from East Bergholt this evening the defence standing form when called upon, midfield competing for the ball and the wide players a threat whoever took up the position. Overall for her Cup Final hat-trick tonight’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match award goes to Cara Savage.

Suffolk Women’s League Cup Winners, East Bergholt United (picture credit East Bergholt)

  Congratulations to East Bergholt United Ladies on winning the Suffolk Women’s League Cup.

Thanks to both clubs for their help with the team details tonight always appreciated. Onto Cambridgeshire for their Women’s League Cup Final.