Match Report – Bury Town Ladies v Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies

Match Report – Bury Town Ladies v Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies

  A trip to Walsham Le Willows FC to watch a semi-final match in the Suffolk Women’s County Cup contested between Bury Town Ladies and Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies. The incentive not only to reach the final but also the opportunity to play at Portman Road home of Ipswich Town FC.

Bury Town playing their football in the ERWFL Division One East, have made it into their 2nd successive Suffolk Women’s County Cup semi-final and will be hoping to go one better and reach the final this time around. Receiving a bye in the 1st round of the competition. In the 2nd round were drawn away to Suffolk Women’s Division side Witnesham Wasps Ladies won the game with a double figures score 11-0 to make it to the quarter finals where they were drawn at home to the leaders of the Suffolk Women’s Division, East Bergholt United. Another clean sheet winning the match 4-0 to book a spot in the semi-finals.

Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies formed 2 season’s ago, compete in the Norfolk Women’s Football League, in Division Two where they are undefeated and on course for promotion. Just over the boarder in Suffolk they qualify for the County Cup competition. A bye in the 1st round like Bury Town were drawn at home to Suffolk Women’s Division side Leiston St Margarets Ladies, won big racking up a 14-0 win. Were awarded a home win over Brantham Athletic Ladies in the quarter finals to advance to the semi-finals.

Today’s match is being played at a neutral ground, Walsham Le Willows FC. A multi-purpose sports ground that has seen some and has on going renovation work a new seated stand along one side of the pitch between the dugouts. A good sized clubhouse in one corner. Pitch looked a little worn in places but is that stage of the season has seen alot of football. A bright dry day few clouds around, got all the way here and realised I’d left my coat at home, good job it was the start of spring.

  Bury Town Ladies starting XI – Charlotte Osborne, Jennifer Grey, Mia Banbury, Laura Bloomfield, Lisa Pratt (C), Norma Locker, Kate Silva, Gabrielle Whitehurst, Shelly Cocksedge, Laura Brame & Gemma Carter
  subs – Steph Hanratty & Shelby Beveridge.

  Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies starting XI – Shauna Brunton-O’Neill, Peta Belson, Maria Palmer, Nikki Wigg (C), Sue-Lyn King, Samantha Brown, Gemma Farman, Jodie Fewkes, Jody Wells, Sophie Martin & Selina Rowland.
  subs – Sarah Meades, Lisa Sissen & Jordan Harris.

                                                      (roll on roll off substitutes)

   Both teams usually play in blue, virtually identical kits, unfortunately this hadn’t been communicated to either team before the game. A solution was found Kirkley & Pakefield would done the Walsham Le Willow FC men’s shirts, red in colour with yellow trim with yellow sock tape placed around their blue socks and it’s Kirkley & Pakefield to kick off the 1st half.

Is a quiet opening to the match the play congested in the middle 3rd over on the far side of the pitch to the stand. Both sides trying to release players down the channels, Bury play it long with Laura Brame making the run on the left, looks to thread a diagonal ball across the area for Gemma Carter on the opposite side, reaching the ball tries to cut it back across the six yard box before it runs out of play slices it behind for a goal kick.

                              Kirkley & Pakefield’s Peta Wilson modelling their improvised oversized kit

Bury are enjoying more of the ball early on as Kirkley & Pakefield get used to playing in red, Selina Rowland plying through the centre is the focal point of their attack Gemma Farman looks to send her through on goal centrally, Bury central defender Laura Bloomfield is on her shoulder goes to ground to make the tackle and wins the ball back.

A spot of head tennis inside the Kirkley & Pakefield half sees the ball put over the top of the defence with Brame racing clear after the ball, goalkeeper Shauna Brunton-O’Neill is out to the edge of her area gets there 1st to kick clear. Brame has the ball out left in the next attack getting to the byline her attempted cross is deflected behind for a corner kick. Swung in towards the far post the target Norma Locker rising to meet the ball clatters into Kirkley & Pakefield captain Nikki Wigg as she meets it the referee stopping play Wigg needing treatment, but is able to return to the pitch.

Kirkley & Pakefield are starting to get themselves into the contest, counter attack with Jodie Fewkes bringing the ball out from the back up the left has Rowland coming across offering support the throw is won taking quickly releasing Rowland up the right wing drives on with the ball crosses it in towards the near post, Bloomfield racing back intercepts puts it behind for a corner kick.

Much of the play is taking place on the far side of the pitch the right for Bury as they bring it forwards winning a throw the ball is played in field before being launched in towards the far side of the area, Kate Silva is wide left for Bury runs onto the ball into the area going away from goal does well to cut a shot back in towards the post rising, Brunton O’Neill has got across to cover the angle and is well placed to make the save holds onto the ball.

Kirkley& Pakefield break the ball put into Rowland inside the Bury half turns inside the circle and takes on the bury defence, shifts the ball between her feet left, right travels to the edge of the area then pulls the trigger the ball arrows in towards goal rising Charlotte Osborne keeping goal for Bury is beaten the ball smashes against the crossbar and bouncing down doesn’t cross the line, Sophie Martin racing up the left for Kirkley & Pakefield tries to get to the on the follow up, Jennifer Grey is back with her wins the tackle for Bury.

The bar is rattled again moments later, Kirkley & Pakefield breaking up another Bury attack bring the ball out into Rowland, tries to help the ball on with Jody Wells making the run in midfield to get beyond her Bury get bodies in the way of the ball however it is deflected out to the left side with Martin in the clear, Osborne had started to come the the edge of her area sensing the threat through the middle is back peddling as Martin takes on the shot 25 yards out, flies over the keeper strikes the crossbar and bounces back into Osborne’s gloves as the keeper gathers.

After Bury’s early dominance on the ball, Kirkley & Pakefield have grown into the game and it has become a much more even contest. Playing the ball out from the back left side Bury captain Lisa Pratt sends Silva away down the left wing taking the ball into the corner shifts it to get half a yard on her marker before delivering a cross into the six yard box, Carter making a great run far post, Brunton-O’Neill gets down in front of her to claim the ball.

Everyone is inside the Bury half bar Brunton-O’Neill as Kirkley & Pakefield win a series of throws on the right, the ball is put into the centre, cleared back to Wigg just over the halfway line her pass forwards clears everyone puts Rowland through springing the offside trap to run in towards the area get after it, Osborne races out towards the edge of her area sliding in saves at the strikers feet.

Bury taking the ball up the right win a corner. The ball is flighted in towards the near post side of goal for Locker to meet 10 yards out, rising heads the ball down into the ground, on target bouncing up Brunton-O’Neill saves, flicks her left hand out to turn the ball wide for another corner, this one towards the far side is defended.

Brunton-O’Neill has to make another save off her own player this time around with Carter carrying the ball on down the right side again for Bury, lifts a high ball into the box near post, Wigg is under it heads the ball up into the air going behind her is in danger of dropping down centrally just under the bar, Brunton-O’Neill keeps her eye on it touches it over the bar.

Bury’s turn to hit the crossbar, build up on the right again Carter with Gabrielle Whitehurst moving the ball down the channel the pass is cut back into the middle of the park with Mia Banbury racing to get onto the end of the ball 25 yards out connects well the ball flies towards goal, nothing Brunton-O’Neill can do except watch it sail past, smashes against the bar down into the area, Fewkes getting to it 1st before it can be turned home out for a corner.

  GOAL! 5 minutes before half-time and the dead lock is broken. Bury win another corner kick on the right. The ball is send in head head height in towards the front of the area the target is Locker coming towards the ball meets it with a bullet header that flies into the back of the net 1-0.

                                                            Norma Locker scores the opener for Bury

Late attack for Kirkley & Pakefield with Fewkes charging up the pitch wins the ball in the middle and lays it out to the right into space with Rowland calling for it, 25 yards out looks to drive towards the area its the shot early, Bloomfield getting across the line of the ball turns it behind for a corner. The ball is fired into the area a chest height angling across the six yard box, Osborne isn’t distracted by Fewkes closing in on her as she sees the ball comfortably into her midriff.

                            Half-time Bury Town Ladies 1-0 Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies

  A good contest in the 1st half 2 sides working hard play has been congested to the right ending up out of play inside the roped off cricket square for the groundsman’s liking. Both sides have hit the woodwork with stinging strikes, Bury have targeted Locker with almost every corner eventually one paid of as she got the goal to give them the slender advantage going into the 2nd half.
  Bury to kick off the 2nd half make a change at half-time with Locker the player coming off, Shelly Beveridge coming on takes up a central attacking role. Kirkley & Pakefield defender Sue-Lyn King winning the ball brings it out from the back laying her pass into Wells on half way she is tripped as she looks to release Rowland through the centre the referee brings it back for the free kick with no advantage on offer. Wells plays the free kick long into the box, Martin gets onto the ball but has strayed offside.
  Martin turns provider of Rowland in Kirkley & Pakefield’s next attack threading the ball through the Bury defence to put Rowland clear to attack the area coming in from the left side trying to hit across the ball on the run slices it into the side netting. Bury make a 2nd change with Shelly Cocksedge coming off, Steph Hanratty coming on.
  Wigg has been clattered inside the box again needing treatment Kirkley & Pakefield make a change Peta Wilson coming off with Jordan Harris coming on joining the defence. Brame attacks down the left side for Bury getting in behind her marker taking on the eraly shot from the corner of the area pulls it wide of the near post. Brame on the ball again carries the ball into the area this time getting closed down puts her foot on the ball and turning looks to hit the ball in across goal for Beveridge to head home, plays it too close to Brunton-O’Neill who claims the ball.
  Farman puts a fantastic ball through the middle dissecting the Bury defence with Rowland racing through in behind into the area Osborne comes towards her one on one Rowland looks to lift the ball around the keeper with the outside of her boot, drops to the floor with her head in her hands as the ball rolls agonisingly wide of the post.
  Kirkley & Pakefield introduce Lisa Sissen to the action with Martin having a rest. Bury have Kirkley & Pakefield stretched a quick build up through the middle see’s Whitehurst put the ball up into Beveridge 20 yards out back to goal holding it up Brame makes a run for her on the left side rolls the ball into her path Brame sends the cross/shot along the six yard box, no one following in far post the ball rolls wide out of play. Cocksedge returns to the field for Bury with Bloomfield off.
  Wells is playing closer to Rowland up top now the two linking well causing Bury some problems, Wells looks to pass the ball into the box for Rowland peeling around the back of the Bury defence edge of the area, the initial pass is cut out but still squirms in behind, Rowland is after it the angle against her goes to shoot put the ball across the face of goal runs out the far side.
  GOAL! Just under 20 minutes left and Kirkley & Pakefield get themselves back on level terms. The ball is played out from a Bury goal kick doesn’t get much clearance is won back 25 yards out and prodded forwards Wells is onto it racing clear to attack the area hits it early low and hard into the bottom corner of the net 1-1.
                                           Jody Wells races through to equalise for Kirkley & Pakefield
 Bury have to deal with a spell of Kirkley & Pakefield pressure heads up after scoring the goal win a series of corners that are defended, Bury finally get the ball back into their opponents half winning a throw on the right the ball is played across the middle lofted up into Cocksegde central she slices her shot 20 yards out the ball spins wide to Silva she hits it in towards goal King gets across to clear.
  Bury are conceding a few free kicks in the middle and this is giving Wells the opportunity to launch it in towards the area, the target this time is Rowland looking to peel in behind as the ball drops, Brame gets in across her run to intercept the ball, clear the area for Bury. Late on Rowland and Wells have switched with the no 8 moving into the more advanced role. Rowland puts the ball through with Bury pushed up on half way far too much for Wells to do to reach the ball before Osborne can come out get to it 1st.
  Into the last 5 minutes of normal time, Bloomfield is back on for taking the place of Pratt as they switch to 3 at the back. Brilliant save from Osborne late on to keep Bury in the game as the ball is won in the middle Farman putting Rowland away through the centre, Banbury is win her but can’t foul as they enter the box, Osborne having initially started to come back onto her line as Rowland shoots throws out a glove to her right to turn the shot around the post for a corner kick. The corner is swept in long towards the far post Wigg up from the back rises but turns the ball behind with her header.
  That’s it the referee brings an end to the 90 minutes and the semi-final heads into extra-time.
                                                                      Extra Time

  It’s Bury who get the extra half hours play underway. Bury have the early ball but can’t find the final ball into the area. Kirkley & Pakefield bring it out from the back a rapid counter move Fewkes putting the ball into Rowland’s feet has Wells already on the move behind her looks to put the ball into her run, Bury’s Hanratty lunges and cuts out the pass.
Kirkley & Pakefield bring Wilson back on with Harris coming off. Bury have increased their tempo, the game has an urgency to it both sides are looking to score in extra-time. Sissen is put away down the left for Kirkley & Pakefield her cross too close to Osborne the keeper gathers. Sissen comes off with Martin going back on.
  Cool as you like from Brunton-O’Neill on her goal line as Bury’s, Carter whips in a cross from the right a high ball with Beveridge and Silva running in either post in between the goalkeeper palms it down with one glove and gathers the bouncing ball. The 1st period of extra time comes to an end.
  Kirkley & Pakefield get the 2nd period underway. Pratt is back on for Bury who attack down the right Carter twisting and turning works the ball free for the cross squares it in for Beveridge, but Brunton-O’Neill gets in front of her to pluck the ball down.
  Few players starting to cramp up. Wigg has been clattered all match, is a little more serious can’t continue, Sarah Meades comes on. Kirkley & Pakefield have a free kick on half way the ball is played early with Martin away on the left side coming inside looking to get onto the end of it as it drops in the area, Osborne gets to it 1st Martin collides with her accidentally the keeper down keeps hold of the ball. Martin again for Kirkley & Pakefield rolls her marker on the left and drives with the ball down the line crosses into Rowland inside the box left sweeps her cross along the sx yard box Wells is there to head it in far post but is flagged offside even as Osborne saves it.
  GOAL! Another free kick is given away by Bury wide on the right half way inside their half, Wells over the ball sends it in towards the near post bouncing across the six yard box Kirkley & Pakefield have runners coming in and one of those is Sophie Martin who connects to turn the ball home and give Kirkley & Pakefield the lead with barely 4 minutes of time left on the clock 1-2.

                                                    Sophie Martin wins the game for Kirkley & Pakefield

  Defend like crazy for the closing minutes Bury can’t get hold of the ball haven’t much time left hold out and celebrate as they win the game 2-1 in extra-time to go through to the Final of the Suffolk Women’s County Cup and the fantastic opportunity to step out and play at Portman Road.

A good contest for 2 hours both side battled hard, work rate was superb a late extra-time winner the difference.

Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies will face current holders Ipswich Town ladies after they beat AFC Sudbury Ladies 1-0 in extra-time themselves to go through to the Portman Road Final scheduled for Monday 23rd May with a 7pm KO. I will be there.

Congratulations to Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies and best of luck in the final. My thanks to both clubs for their help with the teams today.