Tag Archives: Suffolk Women’s League Cup

Cup Final Special – Holland Ladies v Woodbridge Town Ladies

Tuesday 3rd May

Suffolk Women’s League Cup Final

A trip into Suffolk this evening for the first of 4 cup finals over the next 8 days. Begin with the Final of the Suffolk Women’s League Cup, this season being contested between Holland Ladies and Woodbridge Town Ladies.

The competition back after the 2 previous seasons were affected by the Covid pandemic, bringing a close to the 2021/22 SGWFL season. Featuring 2 divisions for the 2nd successive season as the game grows within the county. The 7 strong Premier Division won by Brettvale Ladies. The 9 strong Championship below seeing AFC Kesgrave Ladies pip Henley Athletic Women to the title on goal difference. This evenings final between two of the emerging sides with the league looking to win their first piece of silverware.

Holland Ladies joining the SWGFL at the start of the 2019/20 season. The north east Essex side hitting the ground running a strong outfit signing a number of experienced players at this level and above odds on for a late charge at the title itself before the Covid pandemic began bringing it all to a close. A 2nd Covid hit season following again stifling the sides development, this is really their first full season. With a 7 strong Premier Division had led for much of the campaign with rivals Brettvale playing catch up, eventually overhauling them to win the title. Pushed down to 3rd in the finish by AFC Sudbury Women Reserves who they had originally been expecting to face this evening  but we’ll get to that in a moment. Jasmine Cox an attacker with a wealth of experience and an eye for goal their leading scoring with over 20 this season with captain Lauren Lucas and Lauren Borne both on 7 each.

   Woodbridge Town Ladies were formed the season before Holland joined the league. Like this evenings opponents looking strong from the start recording a 4th placed finish in their debut season in 2018/19 and in the 2 seasons that followed were pushing for the top of the table on both ocassions with Covid stopping them in their tracks again ruining their development and potential. Amongst the goals too. This season has been a different story ultimately ending up bottom of the table in the finish, have suffered from a lack of numbers at times this season. Tough but have the unexpected bonus of a cup final to look forwards too and know that on their day can match anyone in the league. Sadie Jamieson their top scorer with 8 goals this term.

Road to the Final

 16 sides entering the competition, the first round saw Holland Ladies drawn away to fellow Premier Division side Brantham Ladies. Showing great form in the league Holland running out comfortable winners in the finish 7-1 to progress to the quarter final. Woodbridge were drawn away to would be Championship winners, AFC Kesgrave Ladies. A tricky tie finishing 1-1 went into a penalty shootout Woodbridge eventually emerging winners 8-7 to get into the quarter finals. 

Holland at home to Championship side, Chantry Grasshoppers a brace from Jasmine Cox and a goal from Mary-Jane Walsh sending them into the semi-finals. Woodbridge at home to against another Championship side, league newcomers Waveney Ladies, goals from Tayler Cooke, Sadie Jamieson, Charlene Roach-Smith and Stacey Hadley seeing them through to the last 4. Holland ran riot in their semi-final away to fellow Premier Division side, Stowupland Falcons Women, Lauren Bourne with 4 goals and Cox with a hat-trick amongst the goals in a 10-2 victory to reach their first final. There they were thinking they were going to face AFC Sudbury Women Reserves after they beat Woodbridge 3-0 in the other semi-final but competition rules were broken and they were removed seeing Woodbridge into this evenings final.

  Brantham Leisure Centre the venue for this evenings final, home of Brantham Athletic FC including their women’s team. The large clubhouse with bar and kitchen serving hot food and drink overlooking the grass pitches. The main pitch surrounded by fencing on all sides now. A covered seated stand behind one goal and another between the dugouts. Another warm day with sod all rain around the pitch dry dust coming up off it as the ball is kicked. Cloud cover around turning chilly.

Holland Ladies

Holland Ladies starting XI – Charlotte Warren, Becky McDougall, Elise Purser, Hannah Campbell, Keeley Brickwood, Lauren Lucas (C), Lauren Bourne, Jade Meaney, Charlotte Robertson, Mary-Jane Walsh & Jasmine Cox. Subs – Yssie Tye, Lucy Brown, Phoebe Rose & Sasha Moy.

Woodbridge Town Ladies

Woodbridge Town Ladies starting XI – Georgie Bryant, Alice Ager (C), Natasha Williams, Chloe Stopher, Caitlin Howe, Lauren Jacobs, Grace Murphy, Stacey Hadley, Tayler Cooke, Emma Drake & Sadie Jamieson. Subs – Charlene Roach-Smith, Kerry Scott, Natalie Claridge & Emalene Haynes.

(roll on roll off substitutes)

It’s Woodbridge to get the League Cup Final underway kicking off the first half wearing back and white vertical striped shirts with black shorts and socks with Holland wearing orange coloured shirts and socks with black shorts.

 GOAL! No doubt the fastest goal I’ve seen score in a cup final, as Woodbridge play the ball back to their captain Alice Agar at right back is played long up the right side, won by Holland full back, Becky McDougall the cleared ball sent forwards back where it came the defender unaware her goalkeeper is coming as the ball drops towards the corner of her area, the pair collide with Jasmine Cox looking to attack moving left capitalising as she gets hold of the loose ball inside the box and opening up her body slots the ball on the angle into the empty net 1-0.

Jasmine Cox with a quickfire goal for Holland Ladies

  The perfect start for Holland a goal up inside the opening 30 seconds a huge blow for Woodbridge. The game restarting they need to regroup recover quickly the ball is hotly contested in the middle with players from both sides in to close down and block. Stacey Hadley bringing it on for Woodbridge out to Tayler Cooke on the move left side, is forced wide by Holland’s Elise Purser, managing to send low driven ball in on the angle to the near post, Holland goalkeeper, Charlotte Warren closed down by Woodbridge’s Sadie Jamieson the ball not collected knocked behind for a goalkick. 

Woodbridge’s Emma Drake

  Holland captain, Lauren Lucas heading the ball on through the middle for Lauren Bourne to take on shifts it out to Cox on the left of attack, Ager in to close her down forced infield Woodbridge regain possession, Grace Murphy with a forceful run on lifting it forwards, dealt with at the back by Holland’s Hannah Campbell. The midfield busy the ball no still for a moment Murphy forwards out to the right, Holland defend come forwards on the right side with Bourne looks to take on Ager, the full back putting in the tackle the ball going for a throw. Pressing bodies up around the Woodbridge box the ball headed on across the top of the area before a shot from the left is struck wide. 

  Murphy threading the ball on for Jamieson central has Emma Drake giving her a run across her going left to right, attempting to pick her out, Campbell with the foot in to intercept the pass. 

  GOAL! Playing the ball up to Cox right channel, 25 yards out in attack she sends it out to the wing for Charlotte Robertson. Moving forwards plays the cross inside to Mary-Jane Walsh getting clear top of the D, striking the ball with the inside of her right boot looking to send it wide of the keeper into the bottom corner, the crowd and I have to say I did too, thought it was going wide, but no perfectly placed inside the post to double the lead 2-0.

   A strong start to the game for Holland 2 goals up inside the opening 8 minutes. Woodbridge frustrated, a few niggly free-kicks given away. Lucas fouled on half way the ball floated up towards the top of the area dealt with by Hadley for Woodbridge. Coming on down the left wing a throw high for Woodbridge level with the top of the 18 yard line McDougall getting it into Bourne inside the box left corner, controls and strikes the ball on the half volley, caught by Woodbridge goalkeeper, Georgie Bryant.

Woodbridge captain, Alice Ager with Stacey Hadley

  Jamieson looking to put herself about up top for Woodbridge moving right winning a throw, put into Hadley 25 yards out left of the D, strikes a lobbed effort goalwards swerving away off target, Warren claiming the ball. Holland break through the middle Walsh on the ball, is brought down the advantage played though as Cox ahead of her takes on the ball running towards the box shooting from distance on the angle her shot held by Bryant. From a throw on the right, the ball into the Woodbridge box a shot his sliced out to the far post, Cox rising trying to get on the end of it directs it wide.

Alice Ager with the block for Woodbridge

   Cox looking to pick up the ball driven on at the Woodbridge defence Chloe Stopher forcing her wide, as Cooke comes back to defend the ball gone for a throw in. McDougal up on the left winning the ball high looking to drive on towards the Woodbridge area, Murphy across to help Williams as she faces off ends up on the floor and in disbelief as she free-kick is awarded against her. A set-piece in a dangerous area outside the box left side McDougal over the ball strikes the ball with her right foot curling in towards goal, the keeper beaten the ball smashes down off the crossbar rebounding out to the right where a hurrying shot is lifted over. 

McDougall’s effort striking the crossbar

  Holland looking a threat coming forwards Walsh in the middle on for Cox out to the right players drawn across as the cross is flighted into the box, won by Ager and cleared. Competitive in the middle, Woodbridge aren’t getting much joy trying to feed in their attackers with Campbell and fellow centre back Keeley Brickwood winning most things in the air. Bourne central with a great threaded pass to send Cox through in behind right side running at goal blasts the ball goalwards, Bryant behind it down sharply to save. 

Holland Ladies, Hannah Campbell

Holland with a corner on the right players up into the area the inswinging ball helped on across the six yard box, Lucas getting up to head the ball at the back stick, put over a touch off a Woodbridge player spotted another corner awarded from the left. Flung in low cleared at the near post coming back to corner taker, Purser has help from McDougall plays it to her to cross into the area nodded in towards goal, Bryant getting her gloves on it before it can be attacked.

  Jamieson seeing the ball into her from the right with a casual looking flick in behind that sees Drake running into the box striking a shot wide of the near post for Woodbridge. Cooke getting on down the left putting a diagonal ball in towards the top of the box, Warren out quickly to lay claim to the ball with Jamieson stealing through. Jacobs on for Jamieson right the ball played across the top of the Holland area coming to Cooke left side trying to get the ball down under control before she is closed down, snatches at it lifting her attempt over. 

Grace Murphy on the attack for Woodbridge

   Both Cooke and Murphy making an attempt to thread the forwards pass into Drake in attack both times intercepted by Campbell for Holland. Murphy tracking back to defend on Cox as Walsh looks to send her on through the middle. Woodbridge are a little stretched at the back as they commit players on risking the counter attack in their attempts to get the ball into Jamieson in attack, driving on with it left channel, Purser does well to force her out to the touch line  the ball going for a throw in. Both Caitlin Howe off a Holland free-kick and Stopher heading the ball out for defence for Woodbridge. 

 GOAL! 5 minutes left on the clock in the 1st half, Cox with her 2nd of the game, canny as the ball is rolled into her through the middle in behind Bryant coming to close her down, checks shifting the ball to her right to present her with an open goal beyond and sends it home to make it 3-0. 

 Cox’s movement up top often allowing others to get forwards from the middle or full back, is out on the left with Bourne, linking up as McDougall gets on in support the left back clips the cross into the box, Bryant in untroubled able to let the ball run wide of her far post. A corner out of nothing for Holland on the left the ball curled in towards the top of the area a glancing header knocked down by Lucas is turned wide at the far post.

Lauren Bourne with the ball for Holland

  Late in the first half Howe brings the ball out from the back for Woodbridge into the middle back to Ager to send up to the attackers, Brickwood with a timely interception to deny Jamieson the chance to run through on goal. Into stoppage time Cox attacking Howe across to defend a corner given against her on the right players up into the box, into the box McDougall free at the far post getting plenty of power into her header isn’t far wide with her effort.

Holland Ladies, Becky McDougall

Half-time Holland Ladies 3-0 Woodbridge Town Ladies

  A fantastic start to the cup final for Holland with a goal inside the opening 30 seconds adding a 2nd within 8 minutes. Have had the bulk of the attack since creating a number of chances McDougal striking the crossbar from a free-kick, then heading wide at the end. A 3rd goal coming at the right time with Woodbridge competitive throughout. Recovering well from their poor start haven’t found it easy going forwards, Campbell and Brickwood solid at the back for Holland. Keeping it to 2 goals a half-time would have given them some confidence for the 2nd half conceding a 3rd makes it difficult to get themselves back into the game.

  Changes for both at the start of the 2nd half roll on roll off substitutes not always the easiest to keep track of. Charlene Roach-Smith on in attack for Woodbridge. Sasha Moy  on for Holland replacing McDougall. Holland to get the 2nd half underway. The ball contested in the middle straight away no time on the ball, Hadley getting away on the right for Woodbridge finding no way through. Roach-Smith winning Woodbridge a corner as she pressure the defence inside the box as Cooke puts the ball on from the left. 

  Free-kicks keep being given away in the middle, Holland with the ball on up into the box Howe clearing , Woodbridge look to counter through the middle, Brickwood dropping off to give herself room as Jamieson looks to get the ball down making the tackle. Woodbridge looking to put more pressure on Holland at the start of the 2nd half Jamieson holding the ball up left side winning her team a corner. Whipped in across the six yard box Jamieson then gets up in front of goal but can’t get a telling touch. Walsh on the move with the ball at her feet over halfway for Holland on for Cox, Stopher in to close her down with a good challenge. 

Woodbridge’s Chloe Stopher

Getting a little heated between the sides as Woodbridge finding more possession inside the Holland half. Holland with a free-kick on the right inside the Woodbridge half in towards Robertson top of the D, can’t find a way through the ball cleared. Phoebe Rose coming on for Woodbridge. Purser getting the ball back to Warren as Murphy plays Jamieson on through the middle. 

  GOAL! An hour played and Holland stretch their lead off a corner won on the left, swung into the six yard box dropping down a real goal line scramble ensues as both sides go after the ball pinging back and forth it squirms free to Lucas positioned to the right of the melee and she in turn flicks the ball off her boot into the back of the goal 4-0.

Holland captain, Lauren Lucas putting her side into a 4 goal lead

 A 4th goal coming for Holland denting Woodbridge’s spirited start to the 2nd half. Holland coming right forced wide, back for Brickwood to hit an angled ball into the box wide at the near post. Another sub for Woodbridge, Kerry Scott on at the back. Drake over on the right for Woodbridge running in behind can’t get there before Warren racing out of her area can kick clear. Bourne with some powerful runs through the middle for Holland putting it on for Robertson, Ager tackling for Woodbridge. Holland press on the flanks winning throws high up the pitch from the left the ball sent into the box near side, Bourne running in, Bryant getting her gloves around the ball first. 

Lauren Bourne tackled by Woodbridge’s Caitlin Howe

  Cooke stealing onto the ball out with with a burst of pace put on for Jamieson attacking the box in behind, Warren out to the top of her area getting hold of the ball before she can get a touch. From front to back as Warren’s kick out in headed on by Lucas in the middle on for Robertson who finds Cox drifting to the right forced wider still her cross/shot lands in the side netting. A free-kick for Holland 30 yards out right of the Woodbridge goal, Moy over it directs her strike over at the near post. The game open with both sides looking to score Woodbridge getting Drake away on right sends it in for Roach-Smith running into the box, just overruns the ball allowing the keeper to claim. 

  Robertson just offside as Cox looks to turn the ball in behind on the left. Yssie Tye onto the pitch for Holland along with Emalene Haynes for Woodbridge with around 15 minutes left on the clock. Purser with a great long ball on for Cox pulling right takes it to the by-line before sending a cross into the six yard box, Bryant down to smother it. Players starting to pull up with cramp. Purser feeling something go as she stretches for the ball on the touch line needs to come of McDougall back on. 

 Brickwood with a great challenge to deny Roach-Smith as the ball is lifted in through the middle. McDougal has a decent throw on her sending it on down the right Tye with Cox working a cross into the box, Bryant snatching it down well. Lucas with a driven ball into the area from the left for Holland, Bryant knocking it up into the air appears to get fouled as she goes to catch the ball, her defence though scramble the ball clear. Get up the other end quickly Jamieson moving towards the D checking right before her shot in is saved by Warren, end to end as Holland counter the ball fed on for Cox moving left, Ager with a robust tackle clearing the ball for a corner on the right. 

  Cox drifting right moves wide with Lucas playing her on sees her shot from distance angled in held by the keeper. Walsh sending a shot over from distance as Holland look to keep the ball with the game moving into stoppage time alot of tired legs out there. The ball inside the Woodbridge half late on as Holland come on crossing from the right along the six yard box Cox beyond the far post twisting to head the ball places it wide. Walsh brought down in the middle in front of the Woodbridge D, Ager with the clearance, Cox charging down the ball runs wide behind goal.

  Full time Holland Ladies 4-0 Woodbridge Town Ladies

  A spirited 2nd half from Woodbridge, just couldn’t find the goal they needed to apply any pressure to Holland. a 4th goal coming on the hour making it comfortable at the back for Holland. Woodbridge limiting there chances 2nd half pressed the ball higher. The game opening up as players tired and changes were made. Holland celebrating winning their first piece of silverware.

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

  Onto this evening’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match. A few performances of note to mention first. For Woodbridge, their captain Alice Ager was strong at the back throughout with a number of vital challenges. Taylor Cooke winning the ball well out wide getting on with the ball when she could. For Holland both Lauren Lucas and Lauren Bourne were strong in midfield winning the ball, Lucas with several great passes getting into some great positions from set pieces. Bourne with a number of purposeful runs forwards to join the attack. Becky McDougal strong at the back for Holland and a threat getting forwards unlucky not to get on the scoresheet. The award though goes to Jasmine Cox. Was a menace up front all match with her running on and off the ball moving left and right scoring twice.

Congratulations to Holland Ladies in winning this seasons Suffolk Women’s League Cup Final

Suffolk Women’s League Cup Winners, Holland Ladies

  An enjoyable trip back down to Brantham, an entertaining contest, full credit to Woodbridge after the start they had to keep fighting and not let the result get away from them limiting it to 1-0 in the 2nd half. Holland capitalising on that start however never looked back to win the cup. My thanks for everyone’s help this evening and for the team details as always appreciated. Next up the County Cup Final see you all again Friday.

by Darren Gilham

The Round-Up- Suffolk 23/02/20

The Round-Up

Sunday 23rd February

Suffolk Women’s League Cup

The first of this season’s Suffolk Women’s League Cup semi-finals played this Sunday, a strong looking line-up in the last 4 of this season’s competition this weekend it was 2nd versus 4th in the league with Bury Town Ladies hosting Brettvale Ladies. Bury the first side in the Division to score over 100 goals this season, Brettvale although not scoring as many although 65 is a pretty good number so far have one of the tightest defences in the league conceding just 13 goals. Always going to be a close game both sides in good form Bury finding the back of the Brettvale net twice it wasn’t to be enough however as Brettvale won through to their first ever cup final winning the semi-final 3-2. Abbie Fisher on target to score her 15th goal of the season with Rachel White and Gemma Burnett scoring to send Brettvale into the final. Their opponents will be either Holland Ladies or league leaders Woodbridge Town Ladies the game though not scheduled till the 22nd March.

Suffolk Women’s Division

Four matches played in the Suffolk Women’s Division itself this weekend. Needham Market Women Reserves back in action this weekend taking advantage of Bury and Brettvale locking horns in the cup to win the 3 points at home a nudge their way in between them to see a 3 way tie on 39 points behind leaders Woodbridge. Needham Market were at home playing 2nd bottom side Ramsey & Mistley Ladies, the visitors enjoying their first season in women’s football despite not picking up the points. Needham Market with a strong attack and an array of options coming from midfield proving too strong going forwards, top scorers Katie Moore and Hannah Cobbold on the scoresheet with their 16th & 15th goals of the season respectfully. Captain Amy Trenter firing home her 5th goal of the campaign. Jemma Wessels also celebrating a goal in a 5-0 victory along with new signing Nia Evans making her 2nd appearance scoring her first goal for the side.

Goal mouth action from Needham Market v Ramsey & Mistley on Sunday (photo credit Ben Pooley)

Holland Ladies in 5th place in the Suffolk Women’s Division always behind in their fixtures since the start of the season keeping them below the radar so to speak whilst having games in hand. New to women’s football this season have recruited well bringing experience into the squad and along with it goals. A home this weekend were played Alresford Colne Rangers. Admitting they were not at their best Holland still ran out comfortable winners securing the 3 points with a 6-0 victory. Jasmine Cox top scoring for the club netting a hat-trick to see her up to 28 goals for the campaign. Lauren Bourne getting her 14th of the season, with captain Lauren Lucas and Sophie Blowers also scoring. Now 3 points behind the trio above with 2 games in hand.

Brightlingsea Regent Ladies enjoying a good 2nd season in the Suffolk Women’s Division climb up to 6th in the table their highest position in the league following victory at home to Brantham Athletic Ladies. Brightlingsea have one of the smallest squads in the league to utilising just 15 players this season, that squad doing well however improving leading 2-0 against Brantham at half-time. The visitors fighting back in the 2nd half Jade Horne bringing some useful experience to the side in recent games scoring her first goal on the hour, Lucy Dunnett adding a 2nd goal in the 71st minute. Brightlingsea with a 3rd goal however to win it 3-2 to go 6th. Hannah Goldsmith scoring plenty of goals this season on target to claim a brace has 24 to her tally now. Lucy Tilbury with the other goal moves to 15.

AFC Kesgrave Ladies getting a much needed win at the weekend to end a poor run of results. Were at home taking on Leiston St Margarets Ladies. Sarah Cooper with a goal for the visitors, AFC Kesgrave though scoring twice to win a close match 2-1, Lottie Aldous on the scoresheet netting a penalty.

 

The Round-Up – Suffolk 24/11/19

The Round-Up

Sunday 24th November

Suffolk Women’s League Cup

This weekend seeing the Women’s League Cup reach the quarter finals, 8 sides looking to win a place in the semi-finals of the competition a new name could well be on the trophy come the end of the season.

  League leaders Brettvale Ladies away to former winners Brantham Athletic Ladies this weekend in the quarter finals. A 100% win record in the league Brettvale carrying that form into the League Cup, a brace each for Amie Chippendale and top scorer Abbie Fisher along with a 7th goal of the season for Tarnya McKew seeing Brettvale into the semi-finals courtesy of a 5-1 victory.

New side Holland Ladies reaching the semi-finals of the Suffolk Women’s League Cup enjoying a  good start to life drawn away to Leiston St Margarets, a physical game, both sides creating opportunities early on both keepers called into action Holland taking the lead in the 23rd minute centre back Sadie Cullen playing a great ball in the build up. Holland going on to find their rhythm, particularly, Jasmine Cox as she rattled in 4 goals to take her onto 13 for the season. Becky McDougall and Lauren Bourne with their 8th and 9th goals of the season respectfully helping seal a 6-0 win.

Bury Town Ladies at home to Needham market Women Reserves in the quarter finals of the Suffolk Women’s League Cup on Sunday ,3rd and 4th in the league Bury 3 points behind Needham Market with a 100% record so far in the league, suffered defeat in the cup this weekend Bury Town with a good result beating them 4-0 to advance to the semi-finals. Olivia Hodges with a brace celebrating her first goals for Bury Town, Mia Bambury putting away her 7th goal of the season with top scorer Julie Brind adding one more to her tally of 17 for the campaign.

Bury Town Ladies (photo credit Neil Dady)

Completing the League Cup semi-final line up are Woodbridge Town Ladies. At home in the competition this Sunday taking on AFC Kesgrave Ladies. Coming into the game off the back of 3 straight league wins Woodbridge continuing their good form with top scorer Jenna Liverpool adding 4 more goals to her tally for the season which now stands at 22. Lucy Eagle making her debut joining from Leiston St Margarets getting off the mark straight away with her first for the club. Two more players getting their first of the season too for Woodbridge with Stacey Hadley and Lauren Jacobs both finding the back of the net in a 7-1 win.

Suffolk Women’s Division

Three league games played in the Suffolk Women’s Division too this weekend and good results of sides at the bottom of the table. Ramsey & Mistley Ladies with a fantastic point won in a goalless draw with Alresford Colne Rangers currently 2nd in the table. Ramsey & Mistley earning their 2nd league point since joining the league this season. Alresford happy with the point too, had several regulars missing this Sunday presenting a opportunity to see what others had to offer pleased with the performance. 

Despite their 2nd point of the season Ramsey & Mistley fall a place to 2nd bottom as the bottom pair mat at the weekend Chantry Grasshoppers Ladies and University of Suffolk Women without a point on the board so far this season a tough start for both something having to give as they met for the 1st time this season. Chantry getting that much welcomed first win and 3 points of the season with 4 players all getting off the mark for the season, Sam Elliot bagging a brace, with Megan Le Grice, Louise Dickman and Felicia Harris all celebrating their first goals with Bernice Corney also on target in a 6-0 win.

After their heroics in the County Cup last weekend Henley Athletic Ladies were left disappointed this weekend after the final whistle as they lost at home to a single goal to Brightlingsea Regent Ladies in the league. Lucy Tilbury with her 11th of the season scoring on the hour to net the winning goal for Brightlingsea who climb above Henley Athletic into 7th spot as a result.

The Round-Up – Suffolk 13/10/19

The Round-Up

Sunday 13th October

Suffolk Women’s Division

  Needham Market Women Reserves returned to the top of the Suffolk Women’s Division this Sunday continuing their 100% winning start to the season with 5 wins out of 5 away to Leiston St Margarets Ladies. Lois Balfour continuing her outrageous goal scoring form at the start of the season with a 5th successive hat-trick (alright she scored 10 on her own in the last game) for Needham Market as they run out 10-0 winners. A comfortable result Needham Market scoring plenty of goals all round Hannah Cobbold also on target for a hat-trick in the match their were goals too for Katie Moore, Abbie Wilkinson Taylor Cooke and Jodie Sharp with her first goal for the club.

Needham Market’s Lois Balfour (photo credit Ben Pooley)

Suffolk Women’s League Cup

Elsewhere in Suffolk this weekend it was the 1st Round of the League Cup. Back to back winners East Bergholt United Ladies moving up to join the ERWFL a great opportunity for a new name to get their hands on the silverware come the end of the season. Byes for Needham Market and Leiston St Margarets, Brettvale are also through the the next round given a home win against Chantry Grasshoppers Ladies, that left 6 ties to be played all beating the weather. 

  New side Holland Ladies drawn at home to face University of Suffolk Women another tough result for the visitors fielding 9 players against Holland who won back to back league fixtures a good result last Sunday away to Bury Town carried on that goal scoring momentum rattling in 17 past their opponents to progress. Becky McDougall scoring her first Holland goals netting 4 times Lauren Bourne scoring a hat-trick. Lauren Lucas and Emma Harvey both scoring two each the pairs first goals of the campaign. Megan-Leigh Lawrence and Jasmine Cox with a goal each along with first goals of the season for Keeley Brickwood, Charlotte Warren, Charlotte Robertson and Alisha Blake.

Bury Town Women themselves got back to winning ways away from home in the 1st Round of the League Cup on Sunday taking on an Alresford Colne Rangers side who were level on points with them in 4th going into the match. Bury Town winning comfortably in the finish, Kate Sandlan scoring a brace her first Bury Town goals. Norma Locker too with her first goal of the season along with Mia Banbury in good scoring form for Bury Town at the start of the campaign scoring her 7th goal of the season so far. Bury Town winning 4-0 to progress.

Brantham Athletic Ladies having lost a few players over the close season have been struggling for results in the league a battling performance in the League Cup seeing them knockout newcomers Henley Athletic Women in the 1st Round of the competition. Henley Athletic in good form since joining the league. Danielle Harvey scoring her 5th goal of the season putting Brantham Athletic 1-0 in the 34th minute the visitors working hard to keep their goal intact getting a much needed win.

Woodbridge Town Ladies were away to Brightlingsea Regent Ladies in the 1st Round of the League Cup on Sunday. The visitors getting themselves into a 2-0 lead. Lauren Mallett with her first of the season halving the deficit for Brightlingsea on the stroke of half-time. Woodbridge restoring their 2 goal lead, Brightlingsea getting it back to 3-2 on the hour with Paige Knight scoring her 5th goal of the season from the penalty spot. Woodbridge going on to score again to open up their 2 goal lead once again this time holding onto it to reach the next round of the competition. Top scorer Jenna Liverpool scoring a hat-trick to move onto 7 goals for the season with Kiera Hines also celebrating a goal.

Lastly AFC Kesgrave Ladies League Cup finalists themselves two seasons ago in their new guise having reformed this season were at home to fellow newcomers Ramsey & Mistley Ladies in the 1st Round of the competition. A good first half from Ramsey & Mistley seeing them leading 2-1 thanks to goals from Amy Cook and Farren Varty-MacDonald both getting their first goals for the club. AFC Kesgrave coming back in the 2nd half to equalise and go on to score the winning goal themselves to advance with a 3-2 victory their goals scored by Jade Fox with Sophie Maul and Chloe York scoring their first goals for the club.

  The draw for the quarter finals of the League Cup already made ties to be played Sunday 24th November with a 1:30pm kick-off:-

 Bury Town Women v Needham Market Women Reserves

Brantham Athletic Ladies v Brettvale Ladies

Leiston St Margarets Ladies v Holland Ladies

Woodbridge Town Ladies v AFC Kesgrave Ladies

The Round-Up – Suffolk 28/04/19

The Round-Up

Season End

Suffolk Women’s Division

A Round-Up on a Friday? What’s that all about? Well with it being a hectic start to the week the season in Suffolk finishing this Thursday evening I thought I’d wait and put it all into one final edition.

  Rewind the action to Wednesday 24th April, Needham Market Women having secured a 2nd placed finish in their debut season playing their last  league match of the campaign at home to Leiston St Margarets Ladies. A comfortable 4-0 lead for Needham market at half-time went on to score a further 3 goals 2nd half to end with a 7-0 victory. A fantastic first season for the club together achieving a runners-up finish pushing league winners East Bergholt United Ladies all the way, and 2 cup finals to look forwards too. Top scorer Francesca Rainbird scoring a hat-trick their were goals too for Isabel Chaplin, Nicola Henderson, Milly Carter an a first Needham market goal for Jemma Mortimer.

  Playing on Thursday evening Brantham Athletic Ladies were at home to Alresford Colne Rangers in their penultimate game of the season. A high scoring game between the sides had to settle for a share of the points scoring 3 goals each. Jodie Sharp, Sophie Crabtree & Shanice Leeks scoring for Brantham up to 3rd in the table, whilst Rae Clancy, Jo Harvey & Jasmine Warner scored the goals for 5th placed Alresford Colne Rangers in what would prove to be their final match of the season with Sunday’s opponents Coplestonians Ladies forfeiting the game.

  Onto Sunday, the final weekend of the season 3 matches played, with Woodbridge Town Ladies at home to Leiston St Margarets Ladies on Thursday. A 7-0 win for Needham Market in midweek as they prepared for Tuesday’s Suffolk Women’s League Cup Final their opponents and league champions for a 2nd successive year were ending their league season away to Leiston St Margarets. Annie Northwood, East Bergholt’s leading goal scorer this season on target for a brace in the game whilst their was a goal a piece for Stacey Teager, Cara Savage and Pippa King in a 5-1 win, East Bergholt impressive in the defence of their title losing just the one game. Looking to make it a 2nd successive league & cup double playing again on Tuesday against Needham Market in the League Cup Final.

  Brantham Athletic Ladies away to Walsham Le Willows Ladies in their final game of the season getting the points they needed to be assured of a 3rd placed finish winning the game 2-0 thanks to goals from Lucy Dunnett and Lucy Elmes.

  An impressive 2nd half to the season for newcomers Brettvale Ladies saw them end on a high with a crushing home win over bottom side University of Suffolk Women in their final game of the season. Tarnya McKew very much a part of their improved results the experienced striker scoring 8 goals in the match taking her to 27 goals from just 11 appearances. Brettvale winning the game 15-1 the rest of their goals spread out with Claire Turnbull, Danielle Lynch, Shaan Hayre, Georgia Lindon, Lucy Brown & Iris Gunnarsdottir all on the scoresheet along with Clara Gosling with her first goal for the club.

  A win for Brantham on Sunday meaning they could not be caught by 4th placed Woodbridge Town Ladies another new comer to the league this season having an improved 2nd half to the campaign picking up some great results to climb up the table, as high as 3rd at one point are the reason I’ve kept this Round-Up till the end of the week as they were playing their final game of the season last evening at home to Leiston St Margarets Ladies. Jenna Liverpool getting the goals for Woodbridge the clubs top scorer finding the back of the net for 2 more goals to end on 21 for the season with Kiera Hines also scoring in a 3-1 win to end the season, great form too with 9 wins from their last 10 league games. Leiston St Margarets Ladies finishing the season with 3 straight defeats nevertheless finish in 6th.

 Before Woodbridge & Leiston St Margarets brought the curtain down on the 2018/19 Suffolk Women’s Division season their was the League Cup to be decided Women’s Football East was their and below is the full report from the game. A larger league this campaign great to see the game growing within Suffolk the new sides all making an impact and will be interesting to see how they progress in the new season.

Tuesday 30th April

Suffolk Women’s League Cup

Needham Market Women v East Bergholt United Ladies

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

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

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

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

Road to the Final

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

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

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

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

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

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

(roll on roll off substitutes)

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

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

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

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

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

Francesca Rainbird with the opening goal for Needham Market Women

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

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

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

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

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

Kimberly Lynch making the save

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Needham Market’s Nicola Henderson

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

East Bergholt United Ladies, Charlotte McGrath

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

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

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

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

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

Match Report – Cup Final Special

Tuesday 30th April

Suffolk Women’s League Cup

Needham Market Women v East Bergholt United Ladies

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

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

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

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

Road to the Final

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

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

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

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

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

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

(roll on roll off substitutes)

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

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

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

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

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

Francesca Rainbird with the opening goal for Needham Market Women

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

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

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

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

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

Kimberly Lynch making the save

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Needham Market’s Nicola Henderson

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

East Bergholt United Ladies, Charlotte McGrath

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

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

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

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

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

The Round-Up – Suffolk 24/02/19

The Round-Up

Sunday 24th February

Suffolk Women’s League Cup

The weather put pay to the Suffolk Women’s League Cup semi-finals a fortnight ago, no chance this weekend with glorious weather it was a strong line-up in the last 4 of the competition with the top 4 in the league itself reaching the semi-finals.

  League leaders East Bergholt United Ladies with a 100% record at the top were away taking on 4th placed Brantham Athletic Ladies. East Bergholt the League Cup holders looking to reach the final for the 3rd successive season.Tasted defeat for the 1st time this season last weekend losing to Needham Market Women in the County Cup quarter finals. It was another close game this weekend against Brantham. Goals from Jessica Clark, Charlotte McGrath and top scorer Annie Northwood securing a 3-1 victory for East Bergholt to see them into the final.

   A close game too in the other Suffolk Women’s League Cup semi-final between to sides looking to reach it for the first time 2nd placed Needham Market Women away to 3rd placed Alresford Colne Rangers. Needham Market going into the game on a high after their County Cup success last weekend, Alresford proving a tough nut to crack the sides going in goalless at the break. Needham Market getting the break through in the 2nd period Lois Balfour with her 15th of the season and Amber Sparkes netting her 16th goal of the campaign seeing Needham market win the game 2-0 to reach a final in their debut season in women’s football.

Suffolk Women’s Division

There were also two league matches played this Sunday in the Suffolk Women’s Division and the results see another new side nudge there way into the top 4 of the table. It was a 4th straight league win with 5 games unbeaten overall for Woodbridge Town Ladies. Were at home to Brightlingsea Regent Ladies at the weekend. A slender 1-0 lead at half-time the hosts went on to score 3 more in the 2nd half to win the game 4-0 and move ahead of Brantham Athletic Ladies. Top scorer Jenna Liverpool scoring her 13th goal of the season for Woodbridge, Sophie Crane was also on target with her 7th. Natasha Williams and Kirsten Spooner both getting a goal a piece.

   Another new name in the league enjoying a good run of form in 2019 are Brettvale Ladies. Strengthening their squad recently. Were at home to Walsham Le Willows Ladies on Sunday. A competitive game between the sides. Olivia Hodges and Norma Locker finding the back of the net for Walsham Le Willows, Brettvale edging them out scoring 3 up the other end at the final whistle. 3-2 to Brettvale their 4th win of the season.

The Round-Up – Suffolk 11/11/18

The Round-Up

Sunday 11th November

Suffolk Women’s League Cup

Quarter Final weekend in the Suffolk Women’s League Cup and progress for 4 of the top 5 sides currently in the league sees a very strong semi-final line-up. Holders, East Bergholt United Ladies advancing to the last 4 courtesy of an away win awarded against Woodbridge Town Ladies. That left 3 of the 4 quarter finals to be contested on Sunday.

   Alresford Colne Rangers were at home to Chantry Grasshoppers Ladies in the quarter finals of the League Cup. A comfortable win seeing them into the last 4. Tiffany Reeves scoring 4 goals in the match to see her leading the goal scoring charts as she moves onto 11 goals for the season. Jo Harvey finding the back of the net with another 2 goals has 9 now for the season. Lucy Stanbury and Vicky Hall also getting a goal a piece the final score 9-0 to Alresford, Laurel Harknett also on the scoresheet with her 1st of the season.

    Brantham Athletic Ladies 2nd in the Suffolk Women’s Division with a 100% win rate at the start of the season were away to Coplestonians Ladies in the quarter finals of the League Cup. Sophie Allen and Courtney Farris-Whatling getting a goal each for Coplestonians, Brantham getting 3 times that up the other end winning the game 6-2 to book their spot in the last 4.

  Needham Market Women were at home in the quarter finals of the League Cup hosting Leiston St Margarets Ladies. The hosts falling behind with Michelle Stanborough putting Leiston St Margarets in front. Needham Market fighting back to level the scores took their chances in the 2nd half to win the game by 5 goals to 1. 

  The draw for the semi-finals of the competition seeing the top 2 in the league going head to head the games scheduled for the New Year, Sunday 10th February are as follows:-

Needham Market Women v Alresford Colne Rangers

Brantham Athletic Ladies v East Bergholt United Ladies 

Suffolk Women’s Division

One game taking place in the Suffolk Women’s Division at the weekend with Brightlingsea Regent Ladies at home to University of Suffolk Women on Sunday afternoon. Brightlingsea holding a 1-0 lead at half-time, the difference as both sides scored again in the 2nd half the 2-1 win Brightlingsea’s 2nd of the season lifts them up to 9th in the league table. Paige Knight and Jessica Scott scoring their goals. Amy Yeldham with the goal for University of Suffolk.

The Round-Up – Suffolk 14/10/18

The Round-Up

Sunday 14th October

Suffolk Women’s Division

Needham Market Women new to the Suffolk Women’s Division move back to the league as they continued their 100% winning start on Sunday taking full advantage of East Bergholt United Ladies not playing. 5 wins out of 5 the latest coming on the road up against Leiston St Margarets Ladies. The sides drawing 1-1 at half-time, Lucy Eagles scoring from Leiston St Margarets. Needham Market coming out the stronger in the 2nd half scoring 3 goals to win the game 4-1, their goalscorers, Milly Carter, Isabel Chaplin, Francesca Rainbird and Jemma Wessels.

  Brantham Athletic Ladies have also started the season well along with Needham Market and East Bergholt have begun with 4 straight wins their 100% record continuing as they recorded their biggest win to date away to Chantry Grasshoppers Ladies. Shanice Leeks top scoring in the game for Brantham with 4 goals her 1st of the season. Kirsten Hutchings adding a further 2 to her tally now 11. Lucy Dunnett, Shannon Giles, Danielle Harvey and Lucy Elmes also getting a goal each in a 10-1 victory. Keira Hines with the consolation goal for Chantry.

Brantham Athletic Ladies, Shanice Leeks

   Alresford Colne Rangers climb up to 4th place in the Suffolk Women’s Division with their 3rd win of the season on Sunday coming away from home against Coplestonians Ladies. Goalless at the break goals from Jo Harvey and Tiffany Reeves secured the 3 points for Alresford in the 2nd half.

   Heavy defeats in their opening 3 matches since joining the Suffolk Women Division, 2 games against the defending Champions, East Bergholt United Ladies, University of Suffolk Women are off the mark with their 1st win of the campaign coming on Sunday at home to Haverhill Rovers Ladies Reserves who themselves were also without a point at the start of the season. A narrow lead for Suffolk University at half-time a goal to the good. Haverhill Rovers scoring twice in the 2nd half with Abbi Griffin and Claire Insole on target with a goal each. University of Suffolk adding further goals themselves in the 2nd half going on to celebrate a 4-2 win taking them off the foot of the table.

Suffolk Women’s League Cup

   Meeting just last Sunday in the league, Brightlingsea Regent Ladies were hosting Woodbridge Town Ladies for the 2nd successive Sunday, this time in the 1st Round of the League Cup. A 4-0 away win for Woodbridge then a much closer scoreline this time around. Drawing 0-0 at half-time it was Brightlingsea who opened the scoring 2nd half before Woodbridge fought back to equalise then take the lead themselves to win the game 2-1 to progress, Samantha Butcher and Sophie Crane scoring the goals.

The Round-Up – Suffolk 07/10/18

The Round-Up

Sunday 7th October

Suffolk Women’s League Cup

This Sunday saw the 1st Round of the Suffolk Women’s League Cup taking place, 3 ties to be played with the rest of the sides given a bye through to the quarter finals. Two of those ties taking place this Sunday with Brightlingsea Regent Ladies playing Woodbridge Town Ladies each other in the (cup) next weekend. The top two in the league playing in the 1st Round.

  Holders, East Bergholt United Ladies beginning the defence of the League Cup away to University of Suffolk Women. A crushing 19-0 win in the league already this season this Sunday was no less painful for the league newcomers as they were soundly beaten once again. East Bergholt with a strong squad. Annie Northwood scoring 8 goals alone. Jessica Clarke with a hat-trick the other goalscorers all getting one each were Katie Helen Bruce, Jessica Oxlade, Jessica Quinsee, Charlotte Warren, Deben Faiers, Pippa King and Millie Wilding. 19-0 the score East Bergholt into the quarter finals. University of Suffolk Women enduring a tough start have faced sides contesting at the top of the table so far a big league have yet to mix it up with the sides also struggling for early season form

  Needham Market Ladies new to the league themselves have started the season well a 100% league record continued that form in the 1st Round of the League Cup away to Brettvale Ladies. Several ex-Bacton United players in their squad Needham Market have an excellent base to progress. Francesca Rainbird netting a hat-trick, with Abbie Walker striking the ball into the back of the net for two goals. Lois Balfour, Milly Carter and Isabel Chaplin also getting a goal each in an 8-0 win to see Needham Market progress.

Suffolk Women’s Division

 They meet in the 1st Round of the League Cup this coming weekend but this Sunday it was in the league itself for Brightlingsea Regents Ladies at home to Woodbridge Town Ladies. Both new names to the league this season. Both having clocked up one league win each so far going into this match. Woodbridge Town holding the advantage at the break leading 2-0 the visitors going on to celebrate their 2nd league win of the season adding a further two 2nd half to win the game 4-0. Kimberly Edwards, Jenna Liverpool, Natasha Williams with their 1st of the season and Sophie Crane getting the goals