Sunday 9th October
ERWFL Division One North
A trip own the A11 this Sunday afternoon to watch a game from ERWFL Division One North with Newmarket Town Women taking on newly promoted Yaxley Phoenix Ladies.
The regional leagues Division One North and South forming the 6th tier of the women’s football league, clubs ready to step up from the county leagues to further improve, grow and develop. Has been frustrating for the ERWFL who have for a number of season’s now been trying hard to get the 5th and 6th tiers they represent up to full capacity, ideally a 12 strong Premier Division with a Division One North & South (sometimes East and West) featuring 24 sides 12 in each. Looked like they had achieved this in the summer with a number of new sides applying for promotion only to see 4 existing sides fall away before the season started with one new side not entering in the end ultimately seeing the leagues reduced in size with an 8 strong Division One North and 9 in Division One South.
This has led to some frustration amongst clubs about lack of fixtures with the early rounds of the various county cup competitions and FA Women’s Cup affecting fixtures too at this time of the year. The ERWFL remains positive for it’s growth with more clubs planning on joining next season to hopefully get the numbers and stability that will go along way to improving and growing the game. Fakenham Town Ladies and Yaxley Phoenix Ladies new to Division One North this season.
Newmarket Town Women although still relatively new to the ERWFL themselves are one of the stalwarts of Division One North and will be hoping to build on a 3rd placed finish last season to go on to push for promotion to the Premier Division. Have strong competition for the title though with both St Ives Town Ladies and AFC Dunstable Ladies both relegated from the Premier Division last season looking to bounce back at the first attempt with Biggleswade United Ladies strong setting the early pace and Haverhill Town Women improving their squad over the summer. Results have been up and down at the start of the season for Newmarket having played 4 in the league winning 2 and losing 2 to lay in 5th spot coming into today’s game.
A club that prioritises youth bringing players up through the various youth sides with a Development squad geared up to producing players for the 1st team playing in the Cambridgeshire Women’s Division One. A number of today’s squad having come on through that pathway. A few new signings coming in with Ellie Desborough a local girl having been with Norwich City’s youth set-up previously returning having spent 3 seasons with Newmarket. Abbie Corbyn joining the winger having previously been at Thetford Town Ladies. Another young player returning to the club is 16 year old Liv Bradley previously with Cambridge City U16s is another local girl having also spent 4 years with Newmarket as a youth player, hitting the ground running with Newmarket having scored 4 goals in 4 appearances at the start of the season. 4 goals too for attacking midfielder Katie Spiers.
Yaxley Phoenix Ladies new to the ERWFL joining this season having previously been Netherton United Ladies. Moving up to the 6th tier off the back of 2 very strong seasons in Cambridgeshire Women’s Division One completing the league and cup double last season with a 100% record in the league. Largely due to the scoring prowess of attackers Yas Green an Emily Johnson scoring a magnificent 98 goals between them. Green with 57 of those has hit the ground running this season too scoring 4 from 5 appearances whilst Johnson has been on the scoresheet before moving to another club. Moving to Yaxley along with their development side a new beginning a great set-up to take the women’s side forwards. The double winning squad seeing some departures however with players not necessarily wanting the extra travel that comes with regional football. Further hampered todays with absentees and injuries meaning a few development squad players stepping up.
Newmarket’s Tristel Stadium the venue for today’s game the state of the art artificial playing surface looking great in the October sun a pleasant day nice and bright dry with a slight breeze the sun beginning to fall behind one corner a potential problem later in the afternoon. A youth match taking place the kitchen and bar open serving hot food and drink. A covered seated stand with the changing rooms beyond on one side viewing all round the pitch that hosts several Newmarket sides.
Newmarket Town Ladies starting XI – Dominika Szary, Holly Dryland, Kara Wayman, Liv Caffarelli (C), Sophia Yorko, Millie O’Dwyer, Faith Entwistle, Katie Spiers, Lidiya Mykhaylechko, Abbie Corbyn & Liv Bradley. Subs – Katie Hayes, Molly Agnew, Elle Desborough & Annabelle Herring.
Yaxley Phoenix Ladies starting XI – Amy Stanyon, Megan Strickland, Dita Upesjure, Carmen Giles, Zoe Shepherd, Isobel Boyer, Jess Perrin, Eleni Politis, Milly Ramm (C), Yas Green & Eva Coxon. Subs – Fatema Baratyan & Maddison Widger.
(roll on roll off substitutes)
A change of ends prior to kick-off with Yaxley the side having to deal with the sun first half. A few missing for the visitors so too Newmarket with a couple of key players missing from their starting line up. It’s Yaxley to get the game underway wearing their away colours, orange shirts and socks with black shorts. Newmarket wearing Yellow coloured shirts with blue shorts and white socks. The ball played back into midfield for Isabel Boyer who in turn lays it back to her defence to send out to the left wing looking for Yas Green, dealt with by full back Holly Dryland for Newmarket.
The hosts looking to get hold of the ball in midfield and drive forwards at the Yaxley defence, Liv Bradley surging forwards tackled by Yaxley’s Carmen Giles. The clearance long, captain Milly Ramm after it on the right, Dominika Szary rushing out of her area to clear for Newmarket. Newmarket pulled up for offside on the left the resulting free-kick put long into midfielder Jess Perrin outside the box looks to cushion her header down into the area, Sophie Yorko throwing out a leg to turn it away to the right for Newmarket. Attacking left a throw high up the pick sees Bradley onto the ball turning inside a powerful drive taking her through the Yaxley defence heading for the area, goalkeeper Amy Stanyon rushing out to close her down sliding in with her feet to make the blocking challenge, throwing herself forwards to get her hand safely around the ball.
Dita Upesjure at left back for Yaxley getting the tackle in to deny Lidiya Mykhaylechko (I give myself a pat on the back every time I spell that without a RED line appearing) as she looks to get onto the end of a crossfield pass. Newmarket starting brightly taking the game to Yaxley getting players forwards looking to use the width, Bradley moving out to receive the ball.
GOAL! The back of the net found early in the game the warning signs there moments ago with Mykhaylechko pulling wide into space free to receive the ball should it be won in midfield players pressing the ball central won by Newmarket the pass clipped long out to the right side Mykhaylechko running onto it in behind moving central towards the box shooting low past the advancing keeper her strike bouncing off the base of the post and in across goal 1-0 six minutes played.
Newmarket quick to regain possession from the restart Millie O’Dwyer out to Kara Wayman left forwards for Abbie Corbyn, Bradley taking it on turning inside, a good tackle inside the box from Giles. Yaxley with a free-kick on half way Zoe Shepherd to play it long into the area towards the right post area, defended, Szary claiming the headed ball. Green getting hold of the ball on the left for Yaxley driving on before sending a crossfield ball up to the right, the offside flag halting the attack.
Wayman taking the ball on down the left wing for Newmarket a surging run on the ball rides a challenge keeping on her feet to stab a cross into the area looking for Bradley positioned on the penalty spot, just behind her looking to turn into her strike, Upesjure lunging in to make the block with her outstretched leg, the ball dropping down Bradley looking to dig out another opportunity lift it over Upesjure places it straight at the keeper.
GOAL! From back to front Newmarket carve Yaxley open to add a 2nd goal, goalkeeper Szary kicking the ball upfield, Bradley taking it on as it drops across her 30 yards out a strong run battling her way through the opposition defence, heading for the D, Stanyon coming out to close the angle the striker taking the ball away to her right before cutting her shot back across the goal to make it 2-0.
Another blow for Yaxley conceding a 2nd goal inside 15 minutes, look to get on the offensive from the restart the ball won back on the middle Boyer with Perrin fed on for Green making a central run escaping her marker to run for the area shoots from 20 yards out, her low strike on target, Szary down smartly to her left to make the save get her gloves behind the ball. The visitors with Green on the left winning a throw high from that a cross is whipped in across the top of the area defended by Newmarket captain, Liv Caffarelli, who then charges down the attempted return ball from the right.
Newmarket with lots off energy getting players forwards better rushing at the Yaxley defence looking to run through into the area. Eva Coxon up front for Yaxley turning the ball into the path of the advancing Perrin to the right, Caffarelli stepping out to put in the challenge for Newmarket. From another Newmarket offside Yaxley play a good set-piece ball up towards the top of the area, Coxon with Ramm getting the ball in towards goal, racing in low doesn’t trouble Szary.
Dryland defending for Newmarket at the back as Yaxley come left Eleni Politis up with Green on the flank looking to make something happen. Dryland again in the right position inside the box to clear as Ramm fires a ball into the six yard box from the right. Green the outlet for Yaxley on the left looking to get thing’s going forwards her attempted diagonal ball seeing Coxon with a chance to run through central, Szary alert out of her area quickly to make the clearance.
Mykhaylechko coming on through the middle with Spiers the ball played through for Bradley to attack, Stanyon out of her box rapidly to clear for the visitors. Wayman with another powerful run on the left all the way to the by-line before giving away a foul, Ramm hurt needing treatment but is okay to continue. Spiers taking the ball off Entwistle in the middle driving on pulls the trigger from 20 yards out Upesjure throwing herself in making a superb block. Caffarelli forwards on the left crossing the ball inside for Bradley, looks to turn on the ball, Shephard close in making the blocking challenge.
GOAL! The ball spinning out to the left, Wayman getting forwards to add support to Corbyn with Bradley moving out to the flank looking for the pass as players are drawn to the ball, the striker whipping her cross from the top of the area in across the six yard box where Mykhaylechko is stealing in far post unopposed to score a simple tap in to make it 3-0 on the half hour.
Bradley causing the Yaxley defence a number of problems coming out wide to get the ball into her feet and turn, Giles taking a knock as she goes into the challenge to slow her down. Messy at the back for Yaxley as Newmarket drop the ball over the top both Bradley and Mykhaylechko are in offside positions but don’t move for the ball as Corbyn races through a static defensive line caught high up the pitch to bare down on the box. Stanyon coming out to close her down doing well to get a leg in to block the ball the defence recovering then for Yaxley to clear as Newmarket fail to carve out a 2nd opportunity with the loose ball.
GOAL! Yaxley attacking the ball won in the right channel by Caffarelli, Newmarket’s captain playing the ball forwards her well placed clearance finding Mykhaylechko racing on through right side to take the ball on turning inside into the area, closing in on the keeper, Stanyon diving attempting to get hold of the ball, Mykhaylechko taking the ball away from her to the right wide of goal inside the six yard box the angle against her nevertheless sends her strike back across goal to net a 1st half hat-trick 4-0.
Yaxley on the back foot bring players on getting up and around the Newmarket penalty box putting the ball out to the right Ramm’s ball back inside sliced behind for a corner kick. Played long Newmarket get on the counter attack right side, Stanyon needing to come out of her box to clear the danger. Yaxley make a change bringing off Politis for Maddison Widger. Has been a frustrating first half for Yaxley summed up as Perrin’s forceful challenge as she comes back to help out the defence spins free into the path of Mykhaylechko on the right she races forwards squaring her cross into the six yard box for Bradley central struck on the turn, the shot running narrowly wide of the right post.
Shepherd carrying the ball out from the back looks to feed Coxon through in behind the Newmarket defence, Szary again out of her area to clear the threat. Her ball forwards putting Newmarket straight on the counter offensive with Bradley taking the ball forwards, Giles pushing her wide out to the left, Bradley evading the defender to get into the box, Stanyon though has come out to close the angle getting hold of the ball. Szary’s kick out’s from the back have been a feature of the game causing Yaxley some issues, Shepherd dealing with the latest with a firm header to get it back to her keeper to clear.
Corbyn with Wayman racing on left side the cross into the box for Bradley looking to see it across her and shoot pulls her effort wide of the far post. Giles pulling up with an injury a pause for treatment for the Yaxley defender. Newmarket finishing the half strong Spiers bringing the ball on through the middle moving left on for Wayman racing forwards travelling into the box shoots her angled drive straight at the keeper.
Half-time Newmarket Town Women 4-0 Yaxley Phoenix Ladies
A dominant first half for Newmarket sees the hosts going into the changing rooms leading 4-0 at the break. Getting on the attack right from the start taking the game to Yaxley getting players on through the middle and out wide, scoring an early goal picked the defence apart at times to press the advantage to add a further 3 goals. Yaxley struggling to cope getting pulled out of position on the back foot making it very difficult to get anything going in attack themselves, Yas Green on the left their main outlet the ball though often coming straight back staying out on the pitch alot to discuss if they are to find a way back into the game 2nd half.
The sun lower in the sky but with a bit of cloud around unlikely to pose an issue with Yaxley’s area now in the shade. The visitors making a change with Giles off, Fatema Baratyan on joining Coxon up front with Green dropping in at centre back. Newmarket also making a change with Katie Hayes on for Corbyn on the left side. The hosts to get the 2nd half underway. The ball put forwards to Hayes running forwards into the left channel, Green heading the ball clear for Yaxley. Newmarket press up early on at the start of the 2nd half a cross flung into the box from the right dealt with by Ramm for Yaxley.
GOAL! Newmarket have player up and around the Yaxley area quickly regain possession the ball back out on the right played inside knocked out to Spiers 25 yards out to the left of the D, catches her strike well sending a shot arching in back towards the far post to nestle in the back of the net extend Newmarket’s advantage 5-0.
Barely a minute gone in the 2nd half and Newmarket strengthen their lead a further blow to Yaxley but are determined to press forwards after the restart Perrin latching onto the ball some 30 yards out to the left of goal putting her foot through the ball, looping towards goal her effort cannoning down off the crossbar!
Newmarket break on the left Spiers bringing the ball on knocked up for Hayes to chase she whips an inviting ball in along the top of the Yaxley area, Bradley racing in appears to be pushed over, however the Newmarket appeals are waved away as the ball is cleared away to the left. Strickland at the back with help from Boyer dealing with Hayes as the 2nd half substitute drives forwards up the left wing. Entwistle on the turn in the middle for Newmarket clipping a well placed pass into Mykhaylechko running on right side, opts for the early strike on the angle, Stanyon already on the move closing the ball down.
Yaxley get the ball moving through the middle, Perrin working it on for Coxon the Baratyan, Caffarelli strong at the back to win the ball back for Newmarket. Green winning the ball at the back well for Yaxley as they look for a better 2nd half performance the ball knocked into the middle, Perrin moving forwards attempting to find Coxon, cut out by Yorko for Newmarket. Green intercepting the ball at the back for Yaxley forwards for Baratyan, attempts to lift it over the top for Coxon, Szary though advancing out of her box to clear.
Stanyon proving a strong last line of defence for Yaxley as the keeper rushes out to slide in and charge down Bradley as the Newmarket striker spins in behind in the right channel. A corner for Newmarket on the right played in over the keeper, Caffarelli hooking it back in across goal Yaxley clear attempt to break, O’Dwyer winning the ball back for the hosts. Green winning the ball well at the back for Yaxley sending her clearance forwards sees Coxon onside left of the box, scuffs her shot however the chance gone as Szary safely gathers the ball.
A triple change for Newmarket with the hour approaching with O’Dwyer, Mykhaylechko and Spiers coming off for Ellie Desborough, Molly Agnew and Annabelle Herring. Bradley is fouled by Shepherd top of the circle inside the Yaxley half. Hayes over the set-piece an ambitious effort as she goes for goal, connects with the ball well however her strike not too far over the crossbar. A few signs of encouragement for Yaxley in the 2nd half, Green going into the back line has make it tougher for Newmarket to get the ball in behind that in turn is seeing the ball won higher up the pitch with Perrin in particular looking to drive forwards with it. Yorko and Caffarelli so far reading the attempted forward passes well.
Shepherd doing well up against Agnew on the right of attack as she looks to get on the end of another superb kick upfield from Szary. Perrin picking up the ball inside the Newmarket half pushing forwards evading a couple of challenges before her progress is halted by Yorko top of the box the ball loose to the right, Ramm latching onto it curling it in towards goal, straight at Szary the keeper holding onto the ball.
Caffarelli fouls Perrin to the left of goal 30 yards out as she carries the ball on. Green over the set-piece as players come forwards, spots Shepherd stealing in unmarked into the box left of goal attempts to roll the ball into the defenders path, Shepherd not quite able to take it in her stride. Green making a difference at back for Yaxley plays with her heart on her sleeve cutting out a crossfield pass from Bradley over on the left that would have seen Agnew clear on the right.
Shepherd in to head the ball clear for Yaxley, Herring bringing it down in the middle lifting the pass forwards into Bradley central looking to turn, Green closing her down charging down her shot. Hayes screws a shot wide from 25 yards out as Agnew sends it forwards on the right. Hates back out on the left moments later spins in behind to send a cross into the box, Green just about cutting it out, Shepherd clearing behind her.
Yaxley growing into the game feeling more confident 2nd half getting players on Boyer in for Perrin out to Ramm advancing on the right wing, sends a cross into the box Coxon on the penalty spot, Yorko putting in the bloc as she goes to shoot. Desborough in the centre for Newmarket playing a great ball out to Hayes on the left she cross fired into the box, skips up off the surface seeing Bradley miss her touch to cushion the ball towards goal. Bradley coming off with 20 minutes left on the clock with Corbyn back on Hayes sent up top to lead the attack
Yorko doing well in defence for Newmarket shielding the ball back to Szary as Coxon looks to get after it. Yaxley feeling they can get something from the game much more even in the 2nd half Newmarket defending a comfortable lead not committing as many forwards however. Perrin marauding forwards riding numerous tackles just can’t pick out an orange shirt around the box, both Yorko and Caffarelli intercepting.
Szary’s kick out from the back setting Corbyn racing away on the left the game stretched the wingers cross from the by-line going long across goal retrieved by Agnew wide right her looping cross back in Stanyon getting her gloves up to get her fingertips on the ball knocking it down far post quick to snatch it into her body with Corbyn ready to pounce.
Hayes comes close to adding a sixth for Newmarket as she is played in by Desborough in the middle right channel 30 yards out strikes the shot in towards goal, looked in but is narrowly over. 10 minutes left to play O’Dwyer back on for Newmarket replacing Dryland. Perrin getting onto the ball driving forwards forced right into the box, riding a tackle stays on her feet, the ball turned behind for a corner kick.
GOAL! Green comes forwards to take the corner on the right players up into the box a packed six yard area, Green’s delivery perfect put in across the face of goal met by Shepherd at, twists her head to turn the ball in at the far post 5-1. Yaxley pulling a goal back in the 83rd minute.
The goal giving Yaxley renewed energy late in the game, Newmarket still with a 4 goal lead however. Perrin through the middle looking to thread the ball on for Widger breaking into the area right side the pass over hit. Perrin then latching onto a rushed clearance 25 yards out sending her strike over the bar.
The game moving into the final minute Yaxley looking to press the ball late on Baratyan up with Perrin a corner won on the right players coming forwards as Green sets the ball down another teasing ball in across goal, Szary getting a strong fist on it this time however to knock the ball high into the air, cleared out of the box the final whistle blowing before Yaxley can send it back in.
Full time Newmarket Town Women 5-1 Yaxley Phoenix Ladies
A 5-1 win for Newmarket sees them jump from 5th to 2nd spot in the Division One North table level on points with leaders Biggleswade. A strong 1st half seeing the host race into an early lead before going on to secure a 4-0 advantage at the break. Getting players forwards stretching the Yaxley defence. Work for the visitors to do made changes at the break, Yas Green dropping into defence made them harder to break down at the back despite the early set back of conceding a 5th goal. Grew into the 2nd half getting the ball forwards Newmarket with a comfortable lead happier to sit back defending their box well for the large part even as Yaxley get forwards better ending the game strong scoring a goal, never settling for damage limitation wanting to get forwards.
Women’s Football East – Player of the Match
Onto this afternoon’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match. Not an easy one to choose certainly from a Newmarket point of view. For Netherton the stand out performer was Yas Green, Whether it be in attack first half on the left or as a stand in centre back in the 2nd half won some vital balls, a pinpoint delivery from the corner for Shepherd to score. Jess Perrin too with a strong game in midfield with some powerful runs on the ball, winning her fair share of tackles looking to create openings. Amy Stanyon too in goal played a large role in keeping the score line down coming out to close the ball down. For Newmarket, Liv Bradley was a handful in attack her movement causing the Yaxley defence problems aswell as some great touches to get her one step ahead of her opponents. Katie Spiers making several good runs from midfield. Lidiya Mykhaylechko taking her hat-trick well getting into space on the right her goals seeing Newmarket to victory. Dominika Szary’s distribution from the back was superb throughout, the award though comes down to the centre backs, Sophie Yorko making several strong challenges and interceptions is just edged out by her captain, Liv Caffarelli wasn’t much that got past her today led from the back with her ball winning and reading of forward passes.
An enjoyable trip to the Tristel Stadium always a competitive game from the ERWFL good to catch up with some footballing friends. My thanks to both sides for their help with the teams today.
by Darren Gilham