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Match Report – Cambridge United WFC v Enfield Town Ladies

FAWNL South East Division One

Sunday 18th August

  The new season is here and I’m as excited as ever to bring you coverage of football across the East at all levels. Beginning with a game from the opening day of the FAWNL from South East Division One, Cambridge United WFC v Enfield Town Ladies.

 Both sides stalwarts of an FAWNL South East Division One league that has undergone many changes in recent seasons as the women’s game continues to grow across the country. Increasingly more competitive the standards raised season upon season this campaign looks certain to be no different. The newly promoted sides dominating last season with Crawley Wasps Ladies storming to the title and promotion to the Southern Premier Division whilst Billericay Town Ladies finished as runners-up. Cambridge City Ladies and Kent Football United the sides promoted this time around both playing at this level for the first time.

A new era begins for Cambridge United WFC as they move to The Premier Plus Stadium home of St Neots Town FC after spending 3 season playing at Mildenhall Town FC. A move that brings them closer to Cambridge and a centralised base for training and playing. Excellent facilities at their disposal. Whilst the promoted pair were running away with it at the top below it was highly competitive last season a late run of form putting Cambridge within a shout of breaking into the top half tailed off to finish 8th overall, Mollie Coupar top scoring with 13 goals. A few departures over the close season to the squad and coaching staff, Ben Yeomans assisting manager Kevin Hoover this season. Gemma Croucher joining the squad from Royston Town Women with Faith Hewitt also back with the squad.

Enfield Town Ladies long established at this level enjoying a fantastic campaign in the league last season strong all season emerging top of the competitive tussle in the middle of the table to record a 3rd placed finish. Helped in part to 16 goals for Molly Peters the ex-West Ham player moving to Championship side Lewes this season. Enfield have added to their squad bringing in the likes of Anna Re and Beth Lumsden along with Rachel Koskey from Luton Town Ladies and Laura Baker who spent last season with Watford Ladies after having previously played for Cambridge United WFC. Formerly the A10 derby the two sides always enjoy a competitive and hard fought game.

Cambridge initially moving to Mildenhall to take advantage of the excellent playing surface on offer, and the move to St Neots offers another superb playing surface, albeit flatter than the slope they’ve become used too. Perfect for the passing game no excuses to play the ball along the ground and want to. Lush and green at the start of the season offering good with, a main seated stand on one side of the ground, covered terracing at each end, a bar open for hot and cold drinks. The weather bright and sunny although a fair amount of dark cloud around, both sun cream and umbrella in the rucksack. A strong breeze blowing too but all in all perfect weather to begin the season.

The Premier Plus Stadium, the new home of Cambridge United WFC

Cambridge United WFC starting XI – Savannah Smith, Abigail Davies, Carrie Bennett, Kayleigh-Anne Burt (C), Jemma Moore, Charlotte Crisp, Amber Cantwell, Faith Hewitt, Emma Jenkins, Kelley Blanchflower & Mollie Coupar. Subs – Liz Pamplin, Claire Kilmartin, Albany Hodgson & Gemma Croucher.

Enfield Town Ladies starting XI – Grace Brooks, Sheryce Slater, Danielle Smith, Claire Ford, Robyn Reardon, Nuala McKevitt (C), Anna Re, Beth Lumsden, Jodie Southby, Laura Baker & Katherine Long. Subs – Tia Bailey, Ayse Mustafa & Rachel Koskey.

Cambridge to get the first half underway sporting their brand new kit, amber coloured shirts with black shorts and socks, Enfield lined up opposite wearing white shirts with blue shorts and socks. Enfield quick to press in the middle Beth Lumsden getting hold of the ball and driving on through the middle passing out wide left for Laura Baker she shoots the ball deflected behind at the near post for an early corner. A crowd of players on top of Cambridge goalkeeper Savannah Smith inside her six yard box as the ball comes in the keeper doing well amongst bodies to get the ball away.

Former teammates Laura Baker and Kayleigh-Anne Burt go head to head

Doesn’t go far cleared up to the left a high ball lifted back in Cambridge captain Kayleigh-Anne Burt heading in behind for another corner. Early pressure from the visitors Cambridge eventually clearing their lines. Pressing right Enfield have a throw in Sheryce Slater sending it down the line for striker Katherine Long, she wins her side another corner kick. A great delivery sent in finding defender Claire Ford rising high at the far post 10 yards out her attempt dropping wide.

  Enfield have made a strong start to the match winning the ball high up the pitch to apply pressure to the Cambridge defence, Long receiving the ball wide left sends in a cross from deep that lands on the roof of the net. Amber Cantwell nipping in to win the ball looks to get things going for the hosts playing the ball up the left for Faith Hewitt her intended through ball cut out the Enfield defence tracking back to save a corner being conceded. A frantic opening to the match both sides beginning to settle into it.

Cambridge’s Carrie Bennett with Enfield’s Beth Lumsden

  Lumsden seeing alot of the ball in the opening 15 minutes sends it on for Slater breaking in behind on the right closing in on the byline gets her foot around the ball to swing in a cross towards the top of the box central Baker sees it into her feet back to goal lays it off for Long behind, she takes on the strike the ball rising Smith diving to her right making a comfortable save. Burt makes a timely intercept in the middle of the Cambridge defence as they are caught with a high line Enfield attempting to break.

   A throw in inside the Enfield half left side played into Kelley Blanchflower the Cambridge striker bringing it infield spots Emma Jenkins making a run wide right plays the diagonal ball, Enfield’s Danielle Smith able to get to it first in defence. The game played at a rapid tempo both sides snapping to win the ball back get it moving. Blanchflower getting hold of the ball 25 yards out turning it left for Hewitt down the wing she sends in a high cross safely collected high in her six yards box by Enfield goalkeeper Grace Brooks. 

 Brooks setting up a quick counter attack the ball left side the shot taken early, Smith making an excellent save down low to her right pushing the ball away to concede a corner. The delivery from the left towards the top of the box dealt with by Cantwell. Enfield come forwards, Cambridge playing a high line at times the visitors working the ball well across the middle to find a way in behind Long in particular moving left then right. Slater breaking clear on the right lifting the ball into the area Smith taking it high.

 GOAL! Cambridge are caught with their defence high as Lumsden flicks the ball on for Long peeling away the the right, a good way out from goal so too is Smith from her area Long striking the ball early to send it past the keeper and on target into the empty net beyond to see Enfield take the lead in the 21st minute 0-1.

Katherine Long opens the scoring for Enfield Town Ladies

Long continuing to be a threat in attack moving to the right once again as Nuala McKevitt captaining the side breaks up a Cambridge attack, the striker getting in beyond fullback Carrie Bennett races towards the area with the ball centre back Jemma Moore getting back on her to clear the ball for the hosts. A free-kick won wide right for Enfield Slater to play the ball, a good delivery into the the area McKevitt on the penalty spot rising gets a glancing header, Smith down sharp to her right to push the ball away, Burt putting it behind for the corner. Enfield a danger from set-pieces the ball in from the left McKevitt heading it up into the air drops for Long outside the area her shot blocked by Moore the danger not gone as the ball is reclaimed on the left a shot driven it, the ball smashing against the crossbar, falls to the right inside the six yard box Baker after it, closed down by defender and keeper puts the ball into the side netting.

Jenkins bringing the ball up the right wing has support from her full back Abigail Davies the cross flung in towards the near post Mollie Coupar arriving, Enfield get it clear. Coupar catching Enfield playing a loose ball across their defence nipping in wins the ball shifting to shoot from 25 yards out Brooks down low makes the save. Coupar in the thick of the action as she sees a pass from midfield into her body turns into the right channel looking to get in behind Ford into the area manages to squeeze a shot away Brooks down to stop it, scrambles it into her gloves with Blanchflower on top of her.

Enfield defender Robyn Reardon tackling Cambridge’s Mollie Coupar

   Cambridge doing alot better now Crisp with Cantwell in the middle winning the ball the latter fouled on halfway, on the free-kick herself  sends it long towards the far post with Blanchflower and Hewitt making runs  ball bouncing through behind at the far post for a goalkick. Jodie Southby back to defend dealing with a cross inside the ball fired in by Coupar as the attacker makes ground on the right. Cambridge are almost undone for a 2nd time as Slater gets away in behind with Smith positioned high, the ball put past her running along the ground towards an empty goal, runs away across the six yards box to strike the base of the far post.

  GOAL! Right on the stroke of half-time Cambridge get themselves back on level terms. Coupar with the ball down in the right corner doing well to win a corner kick the delivery in defended by Enfield put back to the corner taker a 2nd attempt cleared by the defence central Crisp onto it 30 yards out for Cambridge  shifts it before putting her foot through the ball striking it beautifully racing back into the penalty area the ball bouncing before it arrives at the diving keeper finding its way inside the post and into the back of the net 1-1.

Charlotte Crisp with a superb strike levelling the scores for Cambridge late in the first half

 Having rode their luck at times Cambridge find themselves back on level terms strong in the closing moments on the attack a shot taken from distance dropping wide of goal.

Half-time Cambridge United WFC 1-1 Enfield Town Ladies

  Well that was an exciting first 45 minutes and bodes well for the season ahead, as if there was any doubt. The sides drawing 1-1 at the break. Cambridge equalising late on back on level terms might well have found themselves 2 down instead. Enfield were the better side for the majority of the half pressing the ball well in the middle and getting players in behind, a real threat from set-pieces and great movement shown by their attacking players. Cambridge slowly building momentum to create opportunities up the other end beautifully poised for the 2nd half.

  Enfield getting the 2nd period underway attack up the right the ball played out to Long into space the cross put back across the top of the area Lumsden getting hold of it, Cantwell back with her preventing a shooting opportunity. Cambridge bring the ball on rolled into Coupar’s path left channel has Blanchflower ahead of her central Cantwell getting forwards on her right her initial cross blocked has a 2nd go the ball defended by Ford as Blanchflower goes to shoot.

Cambridge United WFC’s, Amber Cantwell

 Cambridge positive in attack in the 2nd half come forwards Coupar on the ball left towards the area played inside the Blanchflower central sees Jenkins clear on her right she hesitates for a moment half expecting a flag to go up against her before realising she is in the clear to shoot the ball rising turned behind by Brooks. The corner left side defended at the near post by Reardon cleared back out to the left crossed straight back in Jenkins in to head the ball down Brooks with a fantastic save at close range somehow getting a glove on the ball to keep it out.

Enfield Town Ladies, Robyn Reardon

 Cambridge enjoying a strong spell winning the ball higher up the pitch getting into attacking positions earlier, it’s from a perfectly weighed clearance at the back from Burt that sets up the next attack Blanchflower released away on the right on for Jenkins ahead of her the cross played in high Enfield’s defence heading over for the corner. Baker is all action whatever position she is deployed in an attacking role this afternoon, hard to shake off the ball, Moore does well against her as she looks to force her way into the box the Cambridge defender preventing a cross. 

Abigail Davies bringing the ball forwards for Cambridge United WFC

  Enfield with the first change of the game Rachel Koskey coming on to join the defence replacing Slater. The visitors finding it harder to break in the 2nd period as Cambridge close them down well. A few tasty challenges coming in as a result, Cantwell prevented from getting away on several occasions. The first booking of the game goes to Ford as she throws out a leg catching Coupar as she looks to spin in behind on halfway. Enfield’s number 10 Lumsden on the receiving end of a few tackles herself breaks right linking up with Long and Baker the attack breaking down.

Enfield Town Ladies captain, Nuala McKevitt

  Long’s last action of the game as she is the next to be substituted with Ayse Mustafa joining the game. McKevitt turning on the ball from all of 30 yards out lets fly with a shot her effort flying over the bar. Coupar brought down wide left in attack Cambridge with a free-kick bring players forwards Cantwell to take. If she meant to play it low across the six yard box she disguised it well nevertheless catches defence and attack out alike as legs lunge for the ball none making contact. Southby combining with Re as Enfield make ground on the right challenges flying in from both sides Cantwell fouled, Baker finds herself in the referees book. 

 Bennett has taken a knock and Cambridge make a change with new signing Gemma Croucher coming on, that sees Jenkins drop to a familiar right back role with Davies switching to the left. Having dealt with the pressure Cambridge applied and their opponents starting to tire Enfield are coming back into it their changes making a difference McKevitt seeing more of the ball supported by Re and Lumsden. Smith takes the ball on into space on the left attempts to slide the through ball in for Baker, Burt intercepting for Cambridge at the back. Re attacking with the ball right twists and turns before sending a shot in the ball wide of the near post a corner signalled. The delivery long Koskey jumping beyond the far post up well sends her attempt over.

Claire Ford defending against Coupar for Enfield

  The game has the potential to go either way both sides getting players forwards in the latter stages. Coupar full of running in attack keeping the Enfield defence on their toes. Moore across to clear the ball as Lumsden moving left gets past Jenkins. From the resulting throw a cross finds its way into the area Burt heading it away drops for Mustafa 25 yards out, Smith keeps her eyes on the ball takes it cleanly despite Southby closing in. 

 Enfield gaining momentum as the game enters the closing stages win a corner on the right players come forwards Smith under pressure near post prevents a shot Ford keeping the ball alive getting it back out to Southby her cross drilled long across goal. Into the final 5 minutes Koskey brings the ball on from the back into the Cambridge half is a goal threat not closed down shoots from distance her strike falling wide of goal. Cambridge’s turn the bring the ball on played forwards early into Croucher right she puts Blanchflower in on the right ahead of her Ford going with her into the area Blanchflower squeezing a shot in across the six yard box Brooks down grabs it into her body with Coupar closing in. 

 GOAL! A late winner! And it’s Enfield celebrating the goal. Come forwards on the left Smith with time on the ball runs clear unchallenged up the line sends in a cross long and high Smith coming attempts to put it out of harms way doesn’t get enough on it the ball dropping far side of the box Re running in late slides in to send it back in across goal Baker central there to met it with her right foot smashing the ball home 1-2.

Laura Baker on target to score the winning goal for Enfield Town Ladies

  Not much time left in the game a hammer blow to Cambridge at the death Enfield come on, energy levels recharged, the ball rolled on for Baker peeling away to the right of the D outside the box is off balance as she puts her foot through the shot screws the attempt wide.

Full time Cambridge United WFC 1-2 Enfield Town Ladies

  Enfield scored a dramatic late winner to take all three points in a match that looked to be heading for a draw. A strong first half performance from Enfield getting themselves into a 1 nil lead could well have and perhaps should have scored another. Cambridge getting back into it with a wonderful strike late in the half, came out fighting 2nd half attacking and creating chances Enfield coping with the pressure their substitutions bringing them back into it, could have gone either way, a point apiece a far reflection Enfield finishing strong themselves however stretched the Cambridge defence late on to find a late winner.

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

  Onto this season’s first Women’s Football East – Player of the Match award, and it’s a tough one. The rules remain the same however there can only be one. Narrowing it down is hard good performers on both sides, Amber Cantwell in midfield for Cambridge along with Mollie Coupar in attack. For Enfield, Beth Lumsden caught my eye early on and showed great movement, running and vision throughout. Katherine Long a real threat in attack great movement across the line opened the scoring with a great flick on from Lumsden. Just edging it though is Laura Baker have seen her play in a number of positions over the seasons today in an attacking role read the game well, able to bring others into attacking positions and leading the line at the end herself scoring the winning goal.

The first report of the season done and although 3000+ words later it doesn’t feel like it I was feeling strangely nervous about writing this one, perhaps just the events over the past few months affecting me but those nerves were soon gone after the game kicked off. Enjoy it an exciting and well fought game to start the season promising for the rest of the season. My thanks to both sides for the team sheets. Great to get the season started.

Match Report – Cambridge United WFC v Enfield Town Ladies

Sunday 29th April

A game from FAWPL South East Division One this afternoon on Women’s Football East back to Mildenhall Town FC for one last time this season to watch Cambridge United WFC take on Enfield Town Ladies.

 A change of venue unfortunately Cambridge United WFC as they were scheduled to play at The Abbey Stadium. The pitch deemed unplayable the game switched back to their usual home ground at Mildenhall, that pitch looking in fantastic condition considering the stage of the season at the amount of games played on it. A new metal fence fitted alongside the pitch too since my last visit. 

Today’s contest between the sides currently sitting 8th and 9th in the table. The A10 derby the sides have enjoyed many close contests over recent seasons. Cambridge United WFC have been in the top half of the table for much of the season, a transitional season with several new players haven’t captured the form from last season inconsistent haven’t picked up the points where they should recently dropping down the table as others below them find form at the end of the season, all very close in the middle of the table.

  Enfield Town Ladies themselves have had an up and down season losing games early on have since stabilised and  like Cambridge their results have varied in the bottom half of the table well clear of the danger zone. Playing their penultimate game of the season can’t finish any higher than 9th. Enfield are one of several sides I haven’t been able to get to watch a game this season so will be good to see them today

  The Mildenhall pitch a credit to the club especially with The Abbey Stadium pitch unfit. Described it several times before a slope from on goal mouth to the other. Plenty of width on offer. What’s happened to the weather? This time last week needed the suncream, not it’s back to being wet and miserable. Overcast a chilly a few spots of rain around. A monsoon heading our way tomorrow…wonderful…

Cambridge United WFC starting XI – Savannah Smith, Emma Jenkins, Carrie Bennett, Kayleigh-Anne Burt, Laura Bright (C), Charlotte Crisp, Laura Baker, Amy Howlett, Faith Hewitt, Lauren Cartwright & Kelley Blanchflower. Subs – Liz Pamplin, Carolyn Sarafian, Gabrielle Whitehurst, Lauren Gibson & Mollie Coupar.

Enfield Town Ladies starting XI – Kerrie Marlborough, Sheryce Slater, Cally Browne, Laura Elias, Claire Ford, Holly Brandon, Rhiannon Bassett, Olivia Martin, Regan Coleman (C), Lisa Kline & Katherine Long. Subs – Beth Dempsey, Andrea Hunyadi, Kally-Anne Westgarth & Katrina Martin.

  It’s Enfield to kick-off the 1st half wearing white shirts with blue shorts and blue and white hooped socks with Cambridge attacking up the slope lined up opposite wearing amber and black vertical striped shirts black shorts and socks. The ball pinging around in the middle as both sides close the ball down quickly, Cambridge’s Laura Baker knocking it on through the middle for Kelley Blanchflower to run onto peeling away to the right, closed down she takes on the early shot looking to lob the ball in towards goal lacking height and power Enfield goalkeeper can gather safely.

   Cambridge regain possession in the centre Charlotte Crisp with the forwards pass Lauren Cartwright picking it up 20 yards out screws a rising shot wide of the target from 20 yards out. Katherine Long nicks in on Cambridge captain Laura Bright to take the ball in behind heads for the box, Bright quick to recover doesn’t let Long get a shot away stepping into the tackle to win the ball. 

Enfield Town Ladies, Katherine Long

  Cambridge push forwards the ball out to Blanchflower who has moved out to the left turns inside her ball into the area for Cartwright she lays it back to Faith Hewitt outside the area her ball for Amy Howlett to the right just a little too heavy inside the box, Howlett goes after it fires the ball back into the area, the shot is hit the ball heading towards goal Marlborough with the instinctive save stooping to parry the ball back out into bodies in front of her a 2nd shot comes in Marlborough making another reactive save to push the ball away to the left. 

Amy Howlett on the attack for Cambridge United WFC

 Lisa Kline bringing the ball on inside right lays it on for Coleman ahead of her Bright coming across wins the challenge. Cambridge come forwards on the left the ball played across field Emma Jenkins coming on through the middle helping it on for Howlett breaking clear on the right her cross into the box Blanchflower looking to get on the end of it Claire Ford defends for Enfield putting the ball behind for the corner kick. Long defending at the far post heads the ball clear for Enfield. 

Cambridge United WFC’s Emma Jenkins

  Enfield with a counter attack Coleman with the ball on the left her pass inside to Long, all of 30 yards out takes a pop at goal, doesn’t trouble Savannah Smith in the Cambridge goal. Smith creates her own trouble not long after a miscued kick from a pass back by Kayleigh-Anne Burt at the back on her left presents the ball straight to Kline, top of the area she looks to take a touch to round the keeper, Smith dives at her feet snatching the ball from the attacker. The match being played at the god tempo both sides exploiting the width on offer. 

Enfield Town Ladies captain, Regan Coleman

  Howlett with the run forwards the pass on for Blanchflower, Ford in to tackle the Cambridge attacker. Cambridge retain possession in the final third winning a corner on the right. A good delivery into the box Holly Brandon winning the ball for Enfield. Enfield look to build an attack Cambridge win it back turn play around quickly Bright on for Cartwright turning in behind, Laura Elias getting back on her to slide in and tackle. 

  Cambridge are playing well getting forwards win a corner on the left a good delivery in by Hewitt claimed high by Marlborough unchallenged at her near post. Elias with the tackle to take the ball away from Blanchflower on the right channel as Cartwright attempts to play her in on goal. Howlett looking to keep the ball in on the right is tackled by Cally Browne the ball out for a throw in. Cambridge press Enfield at the back the ball worked around the top of the area. Hewitt with a shot on the left 20 yards out falls wide of the near post.

  Enfield chances are rare a spell of possession brings them a corner on the right the ball attacked near post knocked down into the area as Cambridge defend then are awarded a free-kick. Burt defends well up against Kline as high ball is played up to her through the middle. Cartwright on the ball brings it on through the middle, Blanchflower moving right ahead of her helps the ball on for Howlett the cross in too close to the keeper Marlborough gathering at her near post. Hewitt breaking on the left receives a crossfield pass 20 yards from goal attempts to slide Blanchflower in on goal the attacker can’t quite reach it before Marlborough can claim it.

Cambridge United WFC defender, Kayleigh-Anne Burt

Enfield are restricted to shots from distance, Long’s effort charged down by Burt 25 yards out. Sheryce Slater with good defensive work at right back to get her head on the ball stop Hewitt from running in clear behind her. A good contest between Blanchflower in attack for Cambridge and Ford in defence for Enfield, Ford stands off Blanchflower this time as she shifts the ball outside the area left side gets a shot it bouncing wide across goal out the far side. Kline gathers the ball on the right as Enfield attack Carrie Bennett tackles her, Kline retains the ball coming inside Burt closes her down to deny her a shot on goal.

Claire Ford, defending for Enfield up against Kelley Blanchflower

  Elias with a good tackle inside the box as Howlett crosses the ball in from the right looking for Cartwright. Late into the 1st half Cambridge continue to attack Hewitt inside to Blanchflower played on to Howlett right side coming inside Browne puts in the blocking tackle right on the edge of the area, Howlett wriggles free with the ball taking it past her her strike at goal is grabbed by Marlborough. A late free-kick for Enfield inside the Cambridge half a fair way out but that doesn’t stop Slater taking on the shot her effort over.

Half-time Cambridge United WFC 0-0 Enfield Town Ladies

    Goalless at the break. Cambridge with an impressive 45 minutes have created most of the chances attacking well. Not using the ball as well as they could in the final third perhaps should have the lead but at 0-0 Enfield are very much still in the game have worked hard at the back defensively haven’t been able to retain the ball going forwards the game played at a high tempo. Will the chances be taken 2nd half.

  Cambridge to get the 2nd half underway attacking down the slope no changes for either side. Kline with an early opportunity to get on the attack for Enfield on the right receiving the ball from Rhiannon Bassett up the line her cross in won by Bright for Cambridge. The home side counter attack Baker on for Blanchflower her pass inside to Cartwright outside the area, Elias with the tackle for Enfield. A corner kick to Cambridge on the right a good delivery in as players crowd the near post goes long across goal Cartwright there can’t provide the telling touch to divert it over the line. 

Cambridge United WFC’s, Lauren Cartwright

  Careless at the back form Cambridge attempting the back pas on the left side again Burt getting the ball back to the keeper, out wide the return ball intercepted by Coleman, Burt quickly on her forced to lunge in concedes the free-kick a dangerous position wide of goal, Slater forwards to take it her ball in across the six yard box Bright stepping out puts her head on it to clear for Cambridge. Get the ball up the other end win a corner on the right taken quickly Browne intercepts the ball turning it behind for a 2nd corner. 

Enfield Town Ladies, Sheryce Slater

  Enfield attack the ball on by Martin into Long right for Kline, Bennett clearing the ball, Long retrieves and is fouled another free-kick for Enfield right side Slater comes forwards to take once again a good ball into the area Long up highest heads the ball towards goal straight at Smith the goalkeeper takes the ball down into her body. 

 GOAL! An hour played and the dead lock is broken Cambridge taking the lead the home side with a rapid attack have Enfield stretched at the back the ball on through the middle for Blanchflower, top of the area Slater gets across to get her head on the ball knocking it away to the right Blanchflower goes after it is clipped in the process and although she stays on her feet the referee blows up pointing to the spot a penalty to Cambridge. Baker to take it. Coolly sends it low to the keepers left into the bottom corner of the goal 1-0.

Laura Baker, scores from the penalty spot for Cambridge United WFC

   Crisp is fouled on the left as she brings the ball on a free-kick to Cambridge players up as Hewitt sends the ball into the area Marlborough able to claim at her near post. Cambridge regain possession winning a throw on the right high up the pitch then get a corner the ball played into the six yard box is knocked out to the edge of the area Burt lashes a shot back in the ball charged down the rebound coming to Crisp her strike blocked at pointblank range as Enfield defend. 

  Ford with more good defensive work up against Blanchflower as she almost gets through on goal through the middle. A change for Enfield, Elias comes off Andrea Hunyadi on. Crisp with the pass out to Hewitt plays it on for Blanchflower moving left ahead of her, the cross in cut out by Brandon. A shot out of nothing for Enfield from 20 yards out drops wide of the near post as Long and Kline converge on the ball. A warning for Cambridge that for all their attacking play they lead is a slender one. 

Holly Brandon on the ball for Enfield Town Ladies

  Blanchflower takes the ball on down the left turning inside evading the challenge getting into the box closing in on goal opens up her body to send a shot wide over the keeper, not wide enough as Marlborough is able to pluck the rising ball out of the air. Enfield are pressing more forwards now Hunyadi in midfield getting the ball into Kline on the right, Burt tackling. Kline strong on the ball again the pass inside from the right into Long she chests it down 25 yards out looking to turn and shoot Jenkins gets across to take the ball away from her. Coleman sending the loose ball wide of goal.

   A double switch for Enfield, Browne and Bassett coming off, Beth Dempsey and Kally-Ann McGrath coming on. 10 minutes left on the clock Mollie Cougar being readied for Cambridge to replace Blanchflower up top. Cougar with an immediate impact picking the ball up from a throw on the left takes the ball on into the box the challenge against her deflecting the ball straight into the path of Crisp 20 yards out left of the D the ball not troubling Marlborough. 

Enfield’s Andrea Hunyadi and Cambridge’s Lauren Cartwright challenge for the ball

  Enfield are gaining a little momentum late on sensing they can get something in the closing stages push forwards. Cambridge caught in two minds defend what they have or go for a 2nd goal. Brandon winning the ball at the back on for McGrath she is tackled by Bennett the full back for Cambridge then getting fouled. Enfield on the attack late on win a free-kick on the right wide the ball played into the area plenty forwards Long heading the ball on another touch before Ford sends her header in towards goal Smith catching the ball, the final action of the game as Cambridge win the game 1-0 to secure the 3 points.

Full time Cambridge United WFC 1-0 Enfield Town Ladies

   A good performance from Cambridge deserving of the 3 points creating plenty of opportunities going forwards unlucky not to be leading at half-time finally broke the dead-lock after an hour awarded a penalty and Baker stepping up to score. A narrow lead however and Enfield were never out of the game and one clinical chance might have been all they needed to take something from the game. Cambridge defending from the front turning play around quickly. 

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

  Today’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match award goes to Cambridge’s Kelley Blanchflower. Led the line well ready for the ball whenever Cambridge turned play around, running into the channels and bringing others into play. Keeping the Enfield defence busy for the whole time she was on the pitch and winning the all important penalty.

Well it wasn’t The Abbey but good to go back to Mildenhall none the less. My thanks to Enfield for their help with the team details this afternoon. Less than a month of the season left, could say I’m winding down but I’d be lying, the next game will soon be around.

Match Report – Norwich City Ladies v Enfield Town Ladies

The last match report of 2016 on the Supporting Women’s Football Blog came from FAWPL South East Division One this Sunday, a trip to Plantation Park to watch Norwich City Ladies play Enfield Town Ladies.

Match Report- Norwich City Ladies v Enfield Town Ladies

 The last match of 2016 on the Supporting Women’s Football Blog this Sunday, a game from the FAWPL South East Division One to end the year, staying in Norfolk a trip to Plantation Park to watch Norwich City Ladies at home to Enfield Town Ladies.

  Watched Norwich City Ladies in action at home a little over a month ago in the FA Women’s Cup winning a dramatic game with local rivals Lowestoft Town Ladies in a penalty shoot-out to reach the 1st Round Proper of the competition. Were to lose out at home to fellow FAWPL South East Division One side, AFC Wimbledon Ladies in the next round to exit the competition leaving the league as their sole objective going into the new year. In 10th place have just the 4 points on the board a point clear of the bottom 2, Stevenage Ladies and Lowestoft Town Ladies.

  Norwich City Ladies are playing catch up with the rest of the league however having played just the 6 league games before today’s game. Winning on the opening day of the season away to Lowestoft, have been integrating several new young players win their experienced squad members, losing their next 4 league games in a row including a 5-4 defeat to Actonians Ladies you might remember reading on the blog having been 4-1 down away from home only to come back to make it 4-4 in the 2nd half before eventually conceding a 5th goal to leave the capital with nothing. Their last league defeat away to Enfield Town Ladies back at the end of October 2-1. Got a point from their match last week welcoming 2nd placed AFC Wimbledon Ladies back to Plantation Park, Paige Shorten scoring in the last 10 minutes to make it 1-1 after the visitors had gone 1 up 10 minutes into the 2nd half. A busy 2017 looms for Norwich as they look to try and close the 8 point gap on the sides above them.

  Enfield Town Ladies are the team Norwich City Ladies are looking to catch in 9th place in the FAWPL South East Division One table. 13 points from 13 games played to date, have a new manager with Marc Nurse-Moore taking over the job having been at West Ham United Ladies previously. Takes charge of one of the divisions established sides that made history last season reaching their 1st ever National Cup Final in what was their 30th anniversary year. A side that is always capable of going on a run in the league only 5 points between Enfield in 9th and Gillingham FC Ladies in 5th tight in the middle of the table. Nurse-Moore despite having a good sized squad at his disposal has had several players unavailable through injury at the start of the season. A 0-0 draw at home last time out in the league against Stevenage Ladies.

  A new layout at Plantation Park on match days now, was easy before for supporters to wander through the main building past the changing rooms to get to the pitch, now instead you go around the Macron Store to the right entering through the turn-styles, access to the upstairs bar to the left, a large window provides a good overview of the pitch, can opt to watch the game from the comfort of indoors if you like, however I have a spot I like at Plantation park in the main stand I like so I headed there instead. The pitch is a good size has seen alot of action and looks fairly worn in places needs a rest over the festive period having seen alot of football and rain. Was a dry day today however the pitch drained well still and sunny if chilly.   

  Norwich City Ladies starting XI – Ellie Bird, Rebecca Russell, Erin Wilson, Bryony Rapley (C) Brooke Osborne, Millie Davies, Jodie Drake, Kyla Love, Ellen Swift, Chelsea Garrett & Natasha Snelling.
  subs- Emily McErkerk, Teo Ilie & Kate Parsons. 

  Enfield Town Ladies starting XI – Jodie Sanderson, Sheryce Slater, Danielle Smith, Claire Ford, Cally Browne, Lizzie Kent, Nuala McKevitt (C), Stavroulla Panayiotou, Danjeta Krasnici, Alena Beganovic & Anna Loftus.  

  subs – Vicky Lewis, Kally-Anna Westgarth & Lisa Kline.

  Shorten unavailable today for Norwich regular captain, Kate Parsons on the bench, Bryony Rapley wearing the captains armband today. Enfield were also without their regular captain, Regan Coleman with Nuala McKevitt wearing the armband today aswell as a bandage around her head to protect an injury that she had sustained earlier the season a severe cut to the head that kept her out for a few games. 

  It’s Norwich to kick-off the 1st half wearing green shirts with yellow vertical piping, yellow shorts with green socks with Enfield lined up opposite wearing white shirts, blue shorts and blue and white hooped socks. Enfield press the ball right from the start win possession send the ball out to the left with Danjeta Krasnici looking to take the ball down the line, wins a throw deep in Norwich territory the ball is worked on into the area headed away, Enfield get it back Lizzie Kent playing it out Stavroulla Panayiotou on the right her diagonal ball into the box is marshalled back to Norwich goalkeeper, Ellie Bird by Rapley at the back.

Norwich City Ladies, Rebecca Russell getting to the ball
ahead of Enfield Town Ladies, Danjeta Krasnici

  Enfield have Norwich pinned in their half at the start of the match, Panayiotou holds the ball up right wing receiving from a throw outside the box her ball crossed into the box headed away by Millie Davies for Norwich look to counter attack the ball played long for Brooke Osborne breaking on the left is tackled by Enfield’s, Danielle Smith level with the top of the area Norwich get the cross into the area, Enfield’s Claire Ford heading the ball out of the area for another throw on the right. Enfield get hold of the ball from the throw can’t get it away good closing down by Jodie Drake for Norwich plays the pass inside for Natasha Snelling 25 yards out looks to try and slide the ball into the box with Chelsea Garrett making a run to get in behind, Ford goes with her, doesn’t need to make the tackle as her goalkeeper, Jodie Sanderson coming forwards makes the call and gathers the ball into her gloves.

Enfield Town Ladies, Claire Ford with Norwich
City Ladies, Chelsea Garrett

  Up the other end Bird is quickly out of her goalmouth to the left corner of her area to slide in and smother the ball at the feet of Krasnici on the left as she breaks in behind after Loftus in the middle closes down the Norwich back line the ball deflecting off her out to Krasnici. Davies fouls Enfield’s, Alena Berganovic in front of the centre circle a free-kick given players go forwards lining up a top the area as Smith plays the ball forwards, McKevitt getting up looks to head the ball on into the area, runs out of play taking a touch of a Norwich body on the way through a corner is given. The ball sent in high to the near post is defended by Norwich, Kyla Love looks to break away down the left, Loftus gets back on her to tackle and win the ball the ball out for a throw on halfway. 

 Love gets hold of the ball and drives forwards down the left for Norwich, sends a low cross into the near post area, Snelling arriving at the top of the six yard box has not been picked up the ball into her looks to help it on across the keeper, runs across the face of goal narrowly wide at the far post. Is shaping up to be a good contest between the 2 sides Norwich give away a free-kick on half-way, Ford to play the ball long up towards the Norwich area, Kent jumps to try and get her head on the ball can’t reach it. The ball is kept down that end Krasnici getting a throw on the left the ball is lifted inside to Kent 25 yards out looks to head the ball on into the area, Bird coming gets hold of the ball before it can be helped on.

Danjeta Krasnici with Norwich’s Natasha Snelling

   Osborne finds herself in a central position as Norwich get the ball forwards 25 yards out wins possession back as Enfield try to clear from the back plays the pass out to Garrett wide left, hooks the ball back in field with Snelling right of the D outside the box picking it up and lifting it up into the box Love breaking far post the target coming in high tries to meet the ball on the volley inside the six yard box her touch sending the ball back square across the face of goal, Sanderson stepping off her goal line gets hold of the ball. Norwich attack on the right Osborne closing down the ball knocks it down the wing for Snelling peeling in behind closing on the byline turns a cross in towards the near post, Ellen Swift making the run can’t get her foot over the ball as McKevitt tracking her run turns the ball behind for the corner kick. Played into the area from the right Davies makes a run towards the ball gets a touch to help it on into the middle Rapley coming in doesn’t connect as she swings for the ball on the penalty spot runs wide to the left Norwich send it back in far post Ford heads clear for Enfield.

  Garrett tries to get ahead of Ford through the middle as Osborne plays the ball on with the outside of her boot inside the centre circle, the Enfield defender holding up the Norwich attacker allowing Sanderson time to come and gather the ball as it runs into the box. Enfield counter attack the ball played into McKevitt her pass long for Panayiotou on the right wing plays an early ball across the face of the Norwich area, 25 yards out running onto the ball Loftus hits a shot 1st time her effort curling away from goal. Midway through the 1st half Enfield press forwards the ball with Panayiotou on the right wing fires the ball into the area the ball flashing wide across goal. Love looks a threat on the left for Norwich breaking from her own half with the ball is stopped by Ford getting across and sliding in to take the ball. 

  Drake plays the ball out to Garrett on the left side, puts the ball inside for Swift outside the box who looks to turn in behind with her 1st touch, Cally Browne reading the move throws out a leg to take the ball away from her. End to end action Rebecca Russell gets to the ball ahead of Krasnici on the left as Enfield try to get her away down the wing the ball is rolled into Snelling moves the ball on quickly with Garrett trying to get in behind run into the box, up against Ford the defender winning the race for the ball. Berganovic is fed in behind the Norwich defence, Bird out of her goal sharply gets to the ball 1st. 


Danielle Smith clears the ball for
Enfield Town Ladies

Love brings the ball up the left for Norwich continues her run making for the box as she lays the ball inside for Snelling outside the box, back out to Garrett on the left is tackled by Sheryce Slater, the ball doesn’t go far Garrett retrieves plays the ball up into the box left side Love seeing it into her feet turns playing the ball into the near post with Swift looking to make the run, Sanderson is across her goal quickly to get down and claim the ball. 

  Snelling drives forwards through the middle with the ball for Norwich her pass is forwards for Swift drifting to the right, Browne gets back on her to put the ball out to the right, Osborne racing forwards gets hold of it pushing down the line her 1st attempt to play the ball in is charged down the ball out for a throw taken quickly, Osborne gets her 2nd cross into the Enfield six yard box flashing across goal hits McKevitt on the back, deflecting it straight at her goal, but also straight into Sanderson well placed in the middle.

  Slater throwing herself at the ball inside the box does just about enough far post to deny Garrett an attempt at goal as she makes the run inside having laid the ball into Snelling at the top of the area on the right as she brings the ball forwards for Norwich. Enfield attack through the middle the ball played into Loftus 30 yards out rolls it in field for Berganovic who looks to feed Panayiotou into the area from the right side, Love getting back tackles her inside the box coming away with the ball. Kent with the long pass out to the right sees Panayiotou attack down the line making for the byline wins Enfield a corner kick, a good delivery into the near post area the ball is dealt with by Rapley.

Norwich City Ladies, Kyla Love

  GOAL! Norwich launch a counter attack and take the lead late in the 1st half the ball with Love on the left side carries it along way is met by Slater the two coming together battling for control of the ball, Slater has it, Love doesn’t give up and getting back at her steals the ball off the defender and runs in behind reaching to top of the box, shoots firing the ball in over the keeper into the back of the net 1-0.

  Enfield press forwards as the 1st half moves into injury time, Panayiotou winning a corner on the right off Wilson. Bird comes through bodies to try and punch it clear near post knocking the ball up into the air is cleared only as far as Berganovic top of the area right of goal takes on the side a nick taking it behind for a 2nd corner kick, Ford gets up highest for it headers the ball down drops wide of the goal a 3rd corner is signalled try to go short with Loftus moving out to the left her ball into the area is cleared by Norwich.  

Half-time Norwich City Ladies 1-0 Enfield Town Ladies

  A narrow lead for Norwich at half-time as the two sides head for the changing rooms. A bright start from Enfield, Norwich coming back into the game a good contest so far both sides attacking with purpose looking to create chances in front of goal. The light starting to fade as the sides head out for the 2nd half, Enfield to get the 2nd half underway. The ball out to Panayiotou on the right, tackled by Wilson the ball out for a throw. Enfield with a strong start to the 2nd half keeping Norwich penned inside their own half, Love tries to get away on the left for the home side Ford coming across to slide in and stop her putting the ball out for the throw. Wilson throws the ball into Snelling the pair combining up the wing the ball swept high into the Enfield area is collected by Sanderson, Swift and Garrett running into the six yard box either side of her.
  A throw deep on the right for Enfield the ball launched into the area for McKevitt, Norwich clear it comes straight at Loftus 30 yards out looks to meet the ball on the volley her shot back in bouncing wide of the target. Enfield make an early change 2nd half with Krasnici coming off, Lisa Kline substituted on takes up a central attacking role with Berganovic moving out to the left side. The visitors continue their good start to the 2nd half pushing players forwards, Bird coming near post to claim a cross lifted in from the left. A rapid build up from Enfield with good control in the middle from Loftus turning off her marker and laying the ball on into the box with Berganovic on the move inside from the left looking to get onto the end of it, Bird with a great save comes sliding out to close her down blocks the shot at her feet the ball loose runs out of the area with McKevitt sensing a chance, Drake getting back to challenge as McKevitt pulls the trigger the ball runs wide of goal.
Anna Loftus scores to make it 1-1 for Enfield Town Ladies 
  GOAL! A little over 10 minutes of the 2nd half played and Enfield pull the scores level. Breaking up a Norwich move the ball is played up through the middle coming into Loftus 25 yards out beats Wilson to the ball taking it on hits the falling ball sending it up into the area looping over Bird to drop into the goal beyond 1-1.
Norwich City Ladies, Ellen Swift
  Norwich get on the attack from the restart the ball played out to the right Osborn getting forwards the early ball fired into Swift outside the box on the right, intends to let the ball run across her spin in behind, up against Ford the experienced centre back reading the move gets a foot on the ball to push it out of Swift’s path. A change for Norwich as they win a free-kick inside the Enfield half, Kate Parsons coming on for Russell at the back. The fee-kick in front of the circle is played up into the Enfield area, Browne clearing fall to Drake outside the box hits a shot back in bounces wide of goal. 
  A shot from Swift from distance 30 yards or more flies in towards goal smashes down off the cross bar bounces behind Sanderson who gets hold of the bouncing ball, long way from that goal so couldn’t tell, after the match the supporters watching from that end say it bounced over the line, the officials didn’t give it however as play continues. Enfield play the ball forwards push plenty of players forwards in the move the ball rolled into Kent outside the box right of the D, looks to curl the ball in towards the far post, takes a deflection off a Norwich shirt that sees the ball run wide for a corner kick.
  GOAL! 62 minutes into the match and Enfield capitalise on their great start to the 2nd half to take the lead from the corner kick, taken from the left a good delivery near post it’s McKevitt who gets up well to meet the ball with her head sending the ball down across the face of the Norwich goal, bouncing off the base of the far stick and into the back of the net 1-2.
Enfield Town Ladies captain, Nuala McKevitt
  Kline with the ball played into her 25 yards out turns off her marker heading towards the area looks to roll the ball on for Berganovic trying to get into the box from the left, is tackled by Rapley the ball out for throw. Berganovic with a strong run on the ball from the halfway line looks to sent Kline through into the area, Norwich defend Parsons getting the ball away for a throw left level with the top of the box. Berganovic takes the ball down and spinning in behind down the wing gets a cross into the area, Bird is able to collect unchallenged.
  The ball is played forwards for Loftus drifting out to the right side as Enfield attack outside the box holds it up as players get forwards rolls it back for McKevitt who pass it inside to Kent outside the area right side looks to curl a ball in towards goal her effort blocked rebounds back to her tries to lift the ball in near post bounces wide of the target. Kent setting up another attack for Enfield plays the ball long for Berganovic on the left, is tackled by Osborne the counter attack on the ball with Love she is fouled inside the Enfield half the free-kick awarded a pause in play as she receives treatment. The ball is played down the right wing the cross put into the box early fired long across the face of goal, Snelling getting into the six yard box does well to get her leg up and turn the ball in towards goal at the post, Sanderson is equal to it getting across to make the save conceding the corner.
Enfield Town Ladies
Jodie Sanderson
  The floodlights much needed come on as Love attacks down the left for Norwich, Slater with support from McKevitt stop her getting into the area. Swift gets onto the ball for Norwich on the right plays the ball into the box flying across the top of the six yard Garrett far post under challenge from Ford can’t direct her shot on target. A corner for Norwich on the right the ball is cleared near post runs out to Love just outside the box right of the D shoots her attempt racing wide of goal. Norwich make their 2nd change Emily McErkerk comes on for Davies.
Norwich City Ladies, Natasha Snelling
  Enfield fail to close down Snelling as the Norwich attacker is given the ball 30 yards out, takes on the shot sends the ball racing in towards goal, Sanderson flat footed in the middle of her goal as the ball skips past her, hits the base of the post and spins across the face of goal, no runners following up Enfield clear and launch a counter attack Kent playing the ball up the middle into Loftus who turning gets her head down and runs at the Norwich defence a good run across her from Kline outside the area sees Loftus run clear shoots from the top of the box the ball flies over Bird smashes down off the crossbar into the six yard box a scramble for the ball sees it cleared behind for a corner.
  Moments after hitting the crossbar, Loftus sees another shot denied by the woodwork. Players forwards pressing Norwich back the home side clear the ball from their area falls to Kent right side 25 yards out headers the ball down inside to Loftus who curls a shot in beating the diving Bird throwing herself to the right the ball hitting the base of the post beyond before being cleared. Another day and Loftus would be celebrating a hat-trick. Loftus keeps the ball in play on the right 30 yard from goal spinning in behind takes the ball down the line before turning inside gets into the box and fires a shot over the bar.
  Snelling is clipped the foul conceded in a central position 25 yards from goal. Parsons on the set-piece looks to go for goal getting the ball around the wall bounces inside the six yard box straight into Sanderson’s gloves. Not much time left for Norwich to find a goal to level the scores 3 minutes of normal time to play as Enfield go on the attack Kline coming away with the ball in the middle charges towards the box sends the ball long towards the far post, Rapley getting the ball away before it can be met by Berganovic running in.
  GOAL! Last minute of the game Norwich counter attack getting the ball forwards into Garrett on the right wing running clear heads for the area, Sanderson comes racing out to close her down Garrett gets the ball past her and it rolls on towards goal kissing the base of the far post before trickling over the line to see Norwich level 2-2.
Chelsea Garrett, pictured with Enfield’s Lizzie Kent with a
late equaliser for Norwich City Ladies.
  Breaks for injuries 2nd half will see several minutes of stoppage time played, both sides not content with the point push on looking for another goal, Enfield have the ball fed into Berganovic 25 yards outside the box a snap shot pulls the ball wide of the Norwich goal. Norwich attack up the other end, Love played onto the ball on the left spins in behind Slater tries to put the ball into the path of Garrett inside the box, Ford getting back on her her tackle deny the scoring opportunity late on. Enfield bring on Vicky Lewis in place of Browne. Loftus gets onto the ball right side for Enfield shoots early putting the ball straight at the keeper, Norwich loose possession trying to play the ball out from the back Loftus nipping in to win the ball 25 yards out lifts a high ball into the box straight at Bird the keeper is able to bring it down safely.
Full-time Norwich City Ladies 2-2 Enfield Town Ladies

 Full-time and the match ends with a draw the points shared Norwich coming back from behind for the 2nd successive home match to earn a draw. A good contest between the two sides, Enfield doing well at the start of the 2nd half to get back on level terms then take the lead, could have won it denied by the woodwork twice. Norwich has two efforts come off the woodwork too and levelling late on may feel they could have nicked the win as well. 
  My thanks to both clubs today for their help with the teams. A good match to end 2016, 102 for the year that will do. Wishing everyone a very Happy Christmas and New Year, see you by a pitch somewhere in 2017.

FAWPL Plate Final – Enfield Town Ladies v Coventry United Ladies

 The Supporting Women’s Football Blog was at Hednesford Tow FC, Keys Park ground on Sunday to watch the FAWPL Plate Final between Enfield Town Ladies and Coventry United Ladies. The whole report as featured on the blog is listed below.

Cup Final Report – Enfield Town Ladies v Coventry United Ladies


 This Sunday’s match report the Supporting Women’s Football Blog comes from Hednesford Town FC for this season FAWPL Plate Final, with Enfield Town Ladies taking on Coventry United Ladies.

  A special occasion for both sides, Enfield Town Ladies are celebrating their 30th anniversary year and this is the 1st time in their history they have reached a National Cup Final. Coventry United Ladies previously Coventry City Ladies now in partnership with Coventry United FC are into League Plate Final for the 1st time. Both sides have made it all the way to the final of the competition without conceding a goal.

Road to the Final

  Enfield Town Ladies playing their football in FAWPL South East Division One were due to play St Nicholas LFC from FAWPL South West Division One in the 1st Round of the League Plate however that fixture never happened and they were awarded a home win. In the 2nd Round were drawn away to fellow South East Division One rivals Denham United Ladies a single goal sealing the win to put them into the quarter finals where they faced a tough away trip to higher division opponents Loughborough Foxes WFC laying the FAWPL Northern Division again it was the single goal that saw the game won coming late on scored by Regan Coleman. Semi-finals and Enfield Town Ladies were back at home but again faced strong opponents from the FAWPL Northern Division again Newcastle United WFC beat them 2-0 at the Queen Elizabeth II Stadium (think she was celebrating some anniversary or another this week too) to book reach their 1st ever National Final. 
  Coventry United Ladies had an away trip to Maidenhead United Ladies in the FAWPL Plate 1st Round, newly promoted to the South West Division One, won the game 5-0 to progress to the 2nd Round away again to play South East Division One leaders and now title winners, Crystal Palace Ladies who will be joining Coventry United Ladies in the FAWPL Southern Division next season. Coventry United Ladies won the match 2-0. On to the quarter finals and at home playing Northern Division One side, Liverpool Marshalls Feds, a single goal from Helen Demody the difference as they book their place in the semi-finals and an away trip to the South West to play Keynsham Town Ladies racking up a 7-0 scoreline to reach the final. Have a mean defence not only in this competition but in the FAWPL Southern Division too conceding just 15 goals in the league to date
  The venue for today’s FAWPL League Plate Final, Keys Park home of Hednesford Town FC hosting a cup final double, having seen the FAWPL Reserve Cup Final played between Bradford City WFC Reserves and Blackburn Rovers Ladies Reserves earlier in the day. A stand alone ground on the outskirts of the tow with business and retail centres nearby the ground is recently built boasting a good sized carpark before the main stand featuring numerous suites and a function room behind a large seated stand, covered stands all around the main and one end seated the others terraced. Hot and cold refreshments available on the day. The weather started off quite bright and sunny but grew decidedly chilly in the afternoon as kick-off for the final approached with some rain in the air. On to the match action.

  Enfield Town Ladies starting XI – Bethan Davies, Holly Brandon, Cally Browne, Claire Ford, Kerrie Marlborough, Nuala McKevitt, Elizabeth Kent, Chloe Bassett, Ayse Mustafa, Victoria Lewis & Regan Coleman (C).
  subs – Beth Demery, Sheryce Slater, Laura Elias, Alena Beganovic & Eliza Diaz.

  Coventry United Ladies starting XI – Susan Wood, Annabel Johnson, Nikki Miles, Natasha Lynch (C), Anna Wilcox, Jade Brook, Libby Piggott, Amber Hughes, Alison Hall, Marie Gauntlett & Cristina Torkildsen.

  subs – Callan Barber, Ellena Rollason, Gina Burton, Sami Ryder & Charlotte McElroy.

  Vocal support for both teams as the players line up before the final, No Ashleigh Neville or Helen Dermody in their squad, it’s Coventry to get the FAWPL Plate Final underway wearing red shirts, green shorts and socks, with Enfield lining up in an all yellow kit with black across the left shoulder on their shirts, names on the back a special memento for a special occasion in the clubs history. Coventry get the ball out to Alison Hall on the left side looking to take players on gets the ball in across the face of the area, Enfield clear it. Christina Torkildsen playing up front wins a corner taking it sends the ball into the area Kerrie Marlborough gets a firm header on the ball to get it away.

  GOAL! The last thing Enfield wanted to do was concede an early goal, but they do exactly that give away a free kick right side just beyond the centre circle, Cristina Torkildsen plays the ball long towards the far post area Alison Hall meets it with her head sending the ball across the face of goal dropping at the opposite post Jade Brook is the player arriving sliding it to connect with the ball and send into the back of the net 1-0.

Jade Brook opens the scoring for Coventry United Ladies in the League Plate Final

    A set back 5 minutes played, Enfield are working hard to close Coventry down on the ball, not easy as they move it quickly. Nuala McKevitt plays the ball out to the right side picking out Chloe Bassett, pushing on to get to the corner, flashes a cross back into the box, can’t pick anyone out. Free kick for Coventry inside the Enfield half in front of the centre circle captain Natasha Lynch to take sends it long with Hall giving chase, Marlborough goes with her and defends putting the ball out for a throw. 

  Lynch defends in er own box as Bassett rolls her marker on the right and pushes down the wing again squaring the ball Lynch intercepts. Enfield keep the pressure on around the box are awarded a free kick just outside the box right side corner. Marlborough puts the ball in towards the far post, Brook gets to it 1st almost sends Annabel Johnson away up the right, Ayse Mustafa back defending from the set-piece get’s to her and tackling wins the ball. 

Regan Coleman on the ball for
Enfield Town Ladies

 A powerful run on the ball from Torkildsen on the right as Coventry attack sees her fire in shot from the angle rising as it flies towards goal, Enfield goalkeeper Bethan Davies throws up her gloves and tips the ball over the bar a corner awarded. The rain that fell at the start of the game has added a little extra zip to the playing surface. The game is playing at a high tempo Enfield closing Coventry down all over the pitch, a little too closely sometimes free kicks are being given away. Marking Torkildsen, Enfield’s Claire Ford gives away a free kick outside the area to the left side. The ball fired into the crowded six yard area is cleared by McKivett.

  GOAL! Enfield get themselves back on level terms scoring to make it 1-1 midway through the half. Captain Regan Coleman leading the line is bundled over on the right side 20 yards out, players come forwards as Marlborough goes over to take, sends the ball out towards the far post area a trio of yellow shirts are their to attack the ball, Elizabeth Kent is amongst them the ball is sent into the back of the net and Kent leads the charge in celebration having scored in the Final. 

Scoring in a Final! Can’t beat it! Elizabeth Kent races out of the Coventry area with
her Enfield team mates after making it 1-1

  Amber Hughes coming in from the right side dribbles the ball past 2 Enfield players before being fouled by Kent. Ford clears the resulting free kick. Marie Gauntlett is free in space on the left as Coventry press forwards the ball is played out to her driving on whips the cross into the box, too close to Davies the keeper grabs hold of the ball. Up the other end Coventry goalkeeper Susan Wood does the same claiming an Enfield cross from Bassett as she links up well with Holly Brandon on the right.

Regan Coleman wins the ball against Jade Brook

    A corner to Enfield on the right, Nikki Miles defends against Bassett as Coleman knocks the ball down to her. Bassett battling to get a cross in puts in a dangerous ball in central on the goal line Wood is under pressure players all around her manages to get a fist on the ball tip it over her crossbar. The 2nd corner from the left is headed wide by Ford at the near post. The rain has started to fall heavily again. Torkildsen wins Coventry a free kick left side of the Enfield area taking it her delivery his initially cleared by Ford falling outside the area the ball is sent back in Davies punches it behind for a corner kick. Get’s her gloves on the ball again to punch the corner out of her area the ball runs out to Hughes 20 yards out, looks to curl a shot into the top corner, flies a yard over the crossbar. 

  An enthusiastic crowd are getting behind both sides, seeing challenges coming in and not happy with some referring decisions. Lynch does well up against Victoria Lewis as Cally Browne looks to play the ball forwards down the left side getting in front of the ball and Lewis as the ball travels into the box, allows Wood the chance to come sliding in and claim the ball. 

  GOAL! Blow for Enfield right on the stroke of half-time as Coventry get themselves back in front. Coventry stretch the play from right to left across the Enfield area, Torkildsen holding the ball up before sending a great ball out to Miles on the left, picking it up she drives to the byline before squaring the ball across the front of the Enfield goal. Again there is a player sliding in for Coventry this time it’s Piggott throwing herself at the ball inside the six yard box to turn it into the back of the net 1-2.

Half-time Enfield Town Ladies 2-1 Coventry United Ladies

  A blow for Enfield Town Ladies conceding a goal right at the end of the 1st half, have battled hard, over zealous at times, but having gotten back into the match it is unfortunate to go into the dressing room behind. Coventry have dealt with Enfield on the large part fairly well not getting caught up in the physical battle, looking to spread the play get players forwards from all parts of the pitch. Enfield get the 2nd half underway.
   The physical battle resumes and the ball is hotly contested in the middle, both Coleman and Torkildsen getting drawn back to help their midfielders win the ball. The ball comes to Lewis on the left for Enfield whips a ball into the area from the right with Coleman providing the run, can’t quite connect with the ball as it flashes across her path. Hughes plays Torkildsen in as she finds room in behind on the right taking the ball down to the byline, Mustafa makes up the ground to track back and sliding in puts the ball out for a corner.
  GOAL! 3 minutes into the 2nd half and Coventry extend their lead scoring from the corner kick put in from the right, what happens next causes a great deal of confusion amongst the watching crowd. Is a great delivery by Torkildsen whipping the ball in central close to goal bodies all around the ball is attacked turned towards goal falling back Ford appears to throw up a hand to stop the ball keep it out, silence falls the crowd caught by surprise when the referee points to the circle awarding a goal to cue some delayed cheering. Brook is credited with the final touch scoring her 2nd of the game, Coventry lead 1-3.
   A chance for Enfield to pull a goal back straight away as Coleman gets hold of the ball wide left and sends a cross into the six yard box far side Bassett is arriving gets her head on the ball inside the six yard box sends the ball over the bar. Gauntlett sends Hughes through down the right, chasing forwards whips the ball towards the area, Ford cuts the cross out Lewis back to clear the loose ball.
Nuala McKevitt heads the ball away with Coventry’s
Cristina Torkildsen looking to get around her
  Both crowd and both benches are getting wound up by some decisions being made by the officials, a robust 50/50 between McKevitt and Brook in the middle sees to 2 square up, is quickly broken up, but having missed the incident the referee has a word with his fellow officials and settles for a word with the two captains. Not long after Coventry’s Piggott comes off 2nd best in a challenge and coming off is replaced by Callan Barber. Coventry go on the attack on the left the ball played inside 20 yards out to Gauntlett is clipped as she knocks the ball on the advantage played as the ball comes to Brook just outside the D, smashes a low shot wide of goal. Play is stopped so Gauntlett can receive treatment.
Kerrie Marlborough heads the ball clear of her area for Enfield Town Ladies
  Enfield make a change bringing on Alena Beganovic for Lewis. Anna Wilcox bombs forwards from centre back for Coventry racing over halfway looks to play the ball on release Torkildsen offering the run through the middle, almost picks her out as she bursts into the area can’t bring the ball under control her touch taking it on to Davies who claims the ball. Coventry are enjoying more possession as the 2nd half goes on Enfield attacks limited, Gauntlett puts the ball into Johnson just inside the area, looks to shoot, McKevitt back defending blocks the ball is deflected towards goal high at the far post Hall fouls as she climbs on the back of a defender trying to head the ball down. Enfield make a 2nd change taking off Browne and bringing on Beth Demery as they look to go 3 at the back and try to get more bodies forwards find a goal. 
  GOAL! The goal however comes at the other end as Coventry take a 4-1 A pacey counter attack stretch Enfield as Torkildsen sends Hughes away into space down the right, taking the ball all the way to the byline cuts the cross back into the six yard box with Gauntlett closing in. The ball looks to have just evaded her, but Gauntlett adjusts well to back heels the ball turn it back across goal, Davies throws own a leg to try and stop the ball gets a touch but not enough to take it around the far post as it rolls over the line.
  Coventry bring Brook off, who was yellow carded earlier and send on Gina Burton. Marlborough comes off for Enfield too with Sheryce Slater entering the action. 
  GOAL! Having gotten one goal, Gauntlett goes and makes it a quick fire double as both sides adjust with substitutions just being made the ball is put up towards Gauntlett 25 yards out right of the area, hits the ball high into the air lobbing the keeper as the ball sails over her and drops into the back of the net 1-5.
  Good defending from Ford for Enfield going with Gauntlett into the area as she looks to make it a quick fire hat-trick, gets a toe to the ball to get it back to Davis cleared out to the middle a shot comes straight back in the ball deflected wide for a corner. Final change for Coventry as Hughes is rested and Ellena Rollason before the corner is taken. The set-piece is put in from the right side, Miles rises highest in the box heads the ball wide. Late into the game Johnson still has the energy to get forwards sends a looping cross out to the far side with Rollason there to meet it puts her header behind goal.
  The final whistle blows and Coventry United Ladies celebrate winning the FAWPL Plate Final beating Enfield Town Ladies 5-1. Were made to work for the victory but in the end their quality told two goals scored either side of the break putting them in control of the game adding 2 goals late on as Enfield tired 2nd half having put so much effort into the game. Battled hard getting a goal but as the final wore on chances up the other end dried up.
Coventry United Ladies, celebrating winning the FAWPL Plate Final
  Congratulations to Coventry United Ladies on winning the FAWPL Plate.

Match Report – Enfield Town Ladies v Cambridge United WFC


This Sunday’s match report on the Supporting Women’s Football Blog comes from the FAWPL South East Division One and features the game between Enfield Town Ladies & Cambridge United WFC. Enfield Town Ladies haven’t played a league game since October 25th 2015 and with just 2 cup games in between are rearing to get their league campaign restarted. Their opponents today are on a hot streak of form Cambridge United WFC  have been getting the games in with a run of 8 games unbeaten that has seen them climb to 4th in the table, click on the link below to take you to all the match action (photo credit – Kevin Richards)

Enfield Town Ladies v Cambridge United WFC