Tag Archives: North Walsham Angels Ladies

Match Report – North Walsham Angels Ladies v Blofield United Ladies

Sunday 12th March

Norfolk Women’s Division Two

Football action from Norfolk Women’s Division Two this Sunday on Women’s Football East with now side Blofield United Ladies amongst those challenging for the title travelling to play an in form North Walsham Angels Ladies in 6th.

 Visiting the league earlier this year there was an intriguing tussle going on at the top of the table with up to 6 sides in a position to mount a title challenge. One of those has very sadly since withdrawn from the league Gorleston FC Ladies their results and points for and against removed. Can only hope we will see Gorleston back in the league soon. The table adjusted as a result sees the other 5 sides still in contention with 7 points between them KLSC FC Women back on top, however a new side has emerged that could yet put the cat amongst the pigeons picking up some great results against the top 5 in recent games.

 That side is North Walsham Angels Ladies currently 6th 2 points behind Aylsham FC Women in 5th. In form a run of 5 straight wins pushing them into contention, after a slow start to the season that saw just 4 points picked up from their opening 5 games. Follows a particularly difficult season up in Division One where they were to struggle not pick up a single point. That season seeing the Norfolk league originally go with 3 Divisions but subsequent withdrawals seeing this becoming increasingly impractical a vote was held to make it 2 divisions and what was division two then was split in two with 4 sides ‘promoted’ to Division One. North Walsham quick to jump on my choice of words with a young side weren’t ready to go up and it showed. A tough season in which the club could have folded but bringing in some of their u16s have stuck together for a renewed campaign in Division Two.

 4 points from their opening 5 matches, returning to league action at the start of February after a series of cup matches North Walsham picked up a fantastic result away from home beating high flying Mulbarton Belles Ladies Development 2-1 to kick start a 5 game winning streak which included 1-0 away to another pair amongst the title contenders Thorpe St Andrew Women and Aylsham FC Women last Sunday. 4 clean sheets in a row too, Stella Fletcher-Helps their top scorer with 6 goals

 Blofield United Ladies making the step up from youth to women’s football this season. Can be a big jump with players eligible from 16 onwards. Hit the ground running chasing KLSC FC Women as one of the early pace setters 5 wins and a draw from their opening 6 league matches before a 3-2 loss at home to Thorpe St Andrew Women before returning to winning ways. Back to back defeats against fellow title contenders 1-2 and 1-5 at home to Mulbarton Belles Ladies and KLSC FC Women respectfully seeing them drop to 4th, remain in a very good position with the top six proving they are all capable of taking points off each other will be an interesting end to the season for sure. Bailey Duffield the 3rd highest scorer in the league netting 17 goals for Blofield United from 10 appearances.

North Walsham Town FC the venue for todays game, and despite seeing North Walsham Angels a few times over their tenure is the first trip to the stadium. Grass pitches leading into the stadium itself a small clubhouse and compact pitch. The decision taken early with the poor weather forecast not to play on the main pitch despite it looking in good nick. The game instead on the main grass pitch leading into the ground a decent sized pitch if a little bobbly in places. Exposed to the elements a stiff wind blowing across the pitch but thankfully the forecast improving leading into the weekend across the East at least very few call offs in the finish. A warm and dry afternoon getting away with it so far this winter.

North Walsham Angels Ladies

North Walsham Angels Ladies starting XI – Rio Dobbie, Grace Monsey, Paige Samwell, Tanisha Grayling, Elise Carroll, Maddy Welton, Sophie Hall (C), Fiona Swanson, Rhiannon Holt, Lucy Taylor & Stella Fletcher-Helps. Subs – Gracie East, Holly Murphy, Grace Walker, Leah Carroll & Kiera Brown.

Blofield United Ladies

 Blofield United Ladies starting XI – Jessica Luff, Laureena Reid, Sophie Crowle, Freya Stewart-Miles, Jade Copeman (C), Darcey Peters, Lucy Schug, Lauren Monument, Elise Downer, Scarlett Royden & Lola Eadie. Subs – Bethany Freestone, Lola Hallam & Bethany Williams.

(roll on roll off substitutes)

Captain’s Sophie Hall and Jade Copeman with referee Michael Clark

  A decent sized pitch but it could have done with the white lines refreshing as they hard to pitch out, nevertheless everyone’s rearing to go, North Walsham wearing black and white vertical striped shirts with black shorts and socks with the wind at their backs to a degree, with Blofield kicking off the 1st half wearing red shirts with black across the shoulders and sleeves, red shorts and socks. Played back to the defence at the start put forwards into midfield, Maddy Welton snapping in to win it for North Walsham, the ball cleared by Blofield long out to the left for Scarlett Royden to attack, Paige Samwell at full back dealing with the ball for North Walsham.

  North Walsham with a throw won high on the right the ball into Fiona Swanson crossed into Stella Fletcher-Helps top of the box to the right of goal, bobbling up before the striker her touch heavy the ball turned into the area snatched up by Blofield goalkeeper, Jessica Luff before Fletcher-Helps can adjust. North Walsham quickly onto the front foot pressing players forwards, Grace Monsey bombing on from left back taking the ball on all the way to the by-line before cutting the cross back in along the top of the area, Lucy Taylor central passing it out to the right for Swanson, Samwell up in support plays it inside for captain Sophie Hall, looks to thread it through to Fletcher-Helps breaking in at the far post, Luff across her goal well able to scoop the ball up into gloves first.

North Walsham’s Grace Monsey

  No one afforded any time on the ball two sides that are intent on keeping the ball on the move makes for a frantic pace players rushing in to close down no time allowed to pick a pass. Darcey Peters closing down to take the ball on putting it onto Royden’s path, Elise Carroll challenging for North Walsham at the back the counter attack sprung as Hall comes away with the ball left side sending it on for Rhiannon Holt up the wing, curls the ball in towards goal, bouncing safely into Luff’s hands.

  Holt getting some joy on the left the ball sent into her path the winger driving on for the by-line before checking back into the box striking a low shot in on the angle across goal, Luff down well to save. Holt on the attack again moments later the ball put into by Hall down the line her cross floated into the box, Lucy Schug heading clear for Blofield. 

Darcey Peters for Blofield tackling North Walsham’s Lucy Taylor

  Peters battling for possession in the middle for Blofield brings the ball on picking out Royden in the left channel, bursts forwards, Samwell lunging in to tackle for North Walsham. North Walsham getting themselves a free-kick to the left of goal 30 plus yards out, Holt over the ball takes on the shot but with the wind coming across the pitch the shot is pulled wide of the near post.

North Walsham’s Rhiannon Holt

  A busy opening 10 minutes can’t take your eyes off it for a moment both sides continuing to rush into the ball get it moving, pinging around in the middle pops loose for Fletcher-Helps central to turn and drive at the Blofield defence, Sophie Crowle forcing her to go right, as Schug closes in to tackle. Peters getting about in the centre of the park for Blofield winning the ball pushing it into Royden and running forwards to receive the return pass, attempts the diagonal pass for Lola Eadie out to the right, the offside flag going up against her.

  Peters in the middle tackling the ball won, Lauren Monument up with her lifting the ball on for Eadie pulling away from the defence right side, North Walsham goalkeeper quickly out to the edge of her box to claim the ball. Hall strong to win the ball in the middle for North Walsham playing it forwards for Fletcher-Helps pulling into the left channel taking the ball in behind into the box left of goal pulls her shot wide of the near post. Crowle appears to have picked up a knock for Blofield and needs to come off, Blofield making their 1st change bringing on Lola Hallam.

Lauren Monument clearing the ball for Blofield

 Fletcher-Helps has her heels clipped as she breaks away on the left side, Hall over the set-piece for North Walsham 30 yards out flighted into the box towards the far North Walsham players coming in late on it not distracting Luff who sees the ball cleanly into her gloves.

Captain Sophie Hall bringing the ball on for North Walsham

  North Walsham seeing more of the ball rushing in to close Blofield down getting the ball forwards with intent, Stewart-Miles tackling at the back to break up an attack the visitors get forwards rapidly Monument putting it on for Hallam through the middle on to Eadie running at the defence is tackled well by North Walsham’s Tanisha Grayling outside the D. Swanson bringing the ball forwards on the right for North Walsham her cross lifted high into the box, Copeman heading it away to safety for Blofield.

Lauren Monument looking to find Lola Eadie with the pass for Blofield

  North Walsham making a double switch bringing off their attackers, Fletcher-Helps and Taylor on come Kiera Brown and Gracie East. Holt continuing to get joy out on the left supported by Monsey coming forwards takes the ball on to the by-line the cross not finding its mark. Hall with a firm header as Luff’s kick out from the back drops short into her knocked forwards into the path of Brown central bearing down on the keeper, Luff stays big composed forcing Brown to take the ball wide to the left of goal cuts her cross back into the middle, Copeman back in position to clear for the visitors.

   At this point in my notes I’ve written the game needs to slow down… but I’ve also written no chance! The women’s game is rarely slow and the pace is particularly frenetic. Peters advancing through the middle for Blofield on for Royden left channel sends it across the top of the rea into Eadie right of the D, riding a challenge stays on her feet to force a shot in low towards goal Dobbie behind it down to save for North Walsham. 

North Walsham goalkeeper Rio Dobbie

   Elise Downer getting on right side with the ball feeding it on for Eadie, Grayling closing her down to tackle on the edge of the box for North Walsham. Samwell bombing on right side for North Walsham checking inside 25 yards out running into traffic, Blofield lifting the ball on helped on looking to counter, Carrol with the headed interception at the back for the hosts. East getting on the ball for North Walsham central finding Hall moving on left side forwards into Holt turning infield, tackled by Stewart-Miles for Blofield. 

North Walsham defender Elise Carroll

  North Walsham press numbers forwards Hall getting on well through the middle with the through ball cutting open the Blofield defence for Brown to attack closing down the keeper, won’t sit as Brown looks to take it around Luff pushed left to the by-line holds it up well before sending it back in across the top of the area Hall latching onto it right of the D driven low in towards goal, Luff down to make the save.

Blofield goalkeeper, Jessica Luff

  Brown making her presence felt up top for North Walsham taking up some good positions as Swanson attacks with the ball on the right her cross lifted into the box Brown stretching to bring it down is charged down before she can attempt the shot. Luff the busier of the two goalkeepers, throwing herself down low to her left to parry the ball away as Brown shoots low for the post having battled her way into the area from the left. Blofield making another change bring of Reid at the back bringing on Bethany Freestone.

  GOAL! The deadlock broken with 38 minutes on the clock, North Walsham advancing through the right channel the diagonal ball coming into Brown top of the area left of the D, carries it away to the by-line, holding it up looking for support Holt bursts into the box left side the ball rolled into her, is tackled by Freestone tracking back, the ball knocked into Brown takes it inside before shooting low across the keeper to place the ball inside the far post 1-0.

Kiera Brown netting the opening goal for North Walsham

  Holt breaking forwards on the left for North Walsham checking back inside to curl a shot wide across goal. A 3rd change for Blofield late in the first half Bethany Williams on for Royden. Grayling defending well in the box for North Walsham shielding the ball back to her keeper getting across Eadie to the right of goal as Peters lifts the pass forwards.

North Walsham’s Gracie East


  Brown going into steal the ball out on the right turning back inside to attack the box shooting low towards the near post, Luff with her angles covered down to claim the ball. North Walsham pressing in the closing stages of the 1st half Brown with the long ball into Holt central, Stewart-Miles nipping in to tackle, Holt nibbling back to get hold of the ball snatching her shot back across goal wide of the left post.  

Half-time North Walsham Angels Ladies 1-0 Blofield United Ladies


Both teams staying out on the pitch during the first half interval. North Walsham with the narrow lead making a strong start to the game after the ball playing at a frantic pace getting players forwards through the middle and out wide creating chances, but for a couple of great saves from Jessica Luff might be leading by more. As it stands a single goal in it Blofield with an opportunity to set a few things right the pace of the game seeing balls rushed more often than not picked up by a North Walsham shirt. 

  No changes for Blofield at the start of the 2nd half, Taylor and Fletcher-Helps back on up top for North Walsham with Brown and East off. The hosts getting the 2nd 45 underway the wind picking up noticeably a distinct chill in the air should favour the visitors now. The ball played back into Hall in midfield out to Samwell right has Holt ahead of her now playing the pass on, Holt sends it inside for Taylor top of the area, turns to attack, Stewart-Miles into her well to tackle the ball gathered by Luff.

  Monsey getting up on the left for North Walsham firing a shot in on the angle, held by Luff. North Walsham beginning the 2nd half where they left off the 1st win a corner on the right. Holt putting it in towards the near post cleared back to the corner taker Holt up the line firing a cross into the six yard box taken well by Luff despite Taylor closing her down. 

  Carroll with a good tackle at the back for North Walsham on Peters as the midfielder gets forwards well for Blofield. Samwell winning the ball well high on the right for North Walsham firing a great ball into Fletcher-Helps right of goal, back to goal holding off her marker turns well on the ball to spin and shoot sends her effort wide of the near post.

Stella Fletcher-Helps sliding in to tackle for North Walsham

   Stewart-Miles with a vital interception at the back for Blofield as North Walsham press well through the middle Welton sending the ball on. Blofield getting on left side Downer up with Williams who is brought down advantage played as Downer gets onto the ball in behind to cross along the top of the area, Eadie looking to nurse it into Hallam’s path as she gets up in support to her left, Dobbie grabbing hold of the ball for North Walsham. 

Blofield’s Lola Hallam

  Fletcher-Helps seeing the ball into her feet out on the right spins away to run forwards, riding a tackle from Freestone before being stopped by Stewart-Miles top of the area. Hall over the free-kick awarded to North Walsham wide on the left from the touch line lifts the ball in towards the near post, Taylor attempting to hook it goalwards caught by Luff.

  Welton putting the ball on through the middle sees Fletcher-Helps pulling away into the right channel to attack the goal in her sights fires in a low shot, Luff superb again getting down quickly to make the save. The pressure building from North Walsham as they look for a 2nd goal.

Jessica Luff down to save Fletcher-Helps shot

  Is a good contest between Stewart-Miles and Fletcher-Helps with the striker looking to run at the defence. Stewart-Miles sliding in to deny Fletcher-Helps this time the ball out for a throw on the right. Holt on the right cutting inside firing the ball into Fletcher-Helps central Copeman in on her this time to challenge clear for Blofield. 

North Walsham’s Maddy Welton

  Welton linking with Hall through the middle for North Walsham forwards into Fletcher-Helps pulls off Copeman going to her left to turn and shot blasting the ball narrowly wide of the post. Blofield making a change Williams and Hallam coming off, Crowle and Royden back on with a little over an hour played. Taylor inside from a throw in North Walsham’s right pushed into Fletcher-Helps looking to get into the box is well marshalled b Stewart-Miles as Freestone gets back to support. 

  GOAL! The pressure building North Walsham pushing for a 2nd goal advance on the left Swanson all the way to the by-line her cross flashed in across the six yard box gathered by Holt beyond the far post turns back to put the ball in across the top of the area Hall running onto it right of the D to smash the ball hard into the back of the net to score her first goal of the season 2-0.

Sophie Hall with North Walsham’s 2nd strike

  Hallam back on for Blofield replacing Monument. North Walsham bringing 5 substitutes on, Brown and East returning with Holly Murphy, Grace Walker and Leah Carroll introduced to the action. 3 of the back four coming off, Monsey, Samwell and Grayling along with Swanson, Taylor going left Brown up with Fletcher-Helps. Downer pressing forwards well out left for Blofield winning a corner players forwards the visitors waste the opportunity to get the ball into the box.

Freya Stewart-Miles with Rhiannon Holt

  Blofield coming on left side a throw won lifted into Eadie nodded down for Downer to take on is tacked by North Walsham’s Elise Carroll. Brown pulling off her marker right side bursts on down to the by-line before sending a vicious cross along the face of goal Murphy not quite able to run onto the ball. East sending a great pass forwards into Fletcher-Helps up to pulling left off her marker to spin into the box right of goal strikes a rising ball goalwards but can only pick out Luff.

  Downer finding a bit of joy in the left now for Blofield getting on the move turns inside to shoot, Dobbie down low at her near post to gather the ball into her body. Copeman coming off for Blofield, Reid sent back on. Fletcher-Helps is working hard up top for North Walsham sliding in to win the ball gets clear on the right wide lifting a diagonal ball in central looking for Brown too much on it Luff able to gather.

Elise Carroll with Bethany Williams

   Blofield getting a free-kick out wide on the left a chance to get players up into the box Royden over the ball flighted into the box, East heading clear at the near post the ball helped up field into Brown, Stewart-Miles tackling to prevent the counter attack. Blofield getting on better with the ball now through the middle Schug on for Peters lifts up to Eadie, Dobbie quick to come out getting to the ball first.

   A few players in the wars more momentum than malice as players rush in to close the ball down, Brown collecting a awkward bounce in the face needing a moment before being picked up to her feet. Hall with a free-kick for North Walsham on half way up the right for Fletcher-Helps spins inside her cross cut out by Reid going away for a corner. 

Copeman called back on to replace Freestone for Blofield with a little under 10 minutes left to play. The game stretched now but no let up in the energy levels from both sides. Royden with a snap shot some 25 yards out as North Walsham make a mess of clearing their lines the shot straight at Dobbie. Eadie battling through the middle with Downer making progress before being closed down Walker tackling to send the ball away for a throw. Blofield asserting a little pressure late in the game.

Downer on the left finding Eadie to drive inside towards the area tackled by Elise Carroll the ball cleared for a throw. 5 minutes left to play Blofield winning a corner left side put in near side cleared up into Fletcher-Helps right side launching a counter attack forwards for Brown running to the box a heavy challenge from Crowle right on the edge of the area both players down, Brown coming off the worse. Crowle back to her feet shown the yellow card. Brown struggling to put weight on her ankle can’t continue hops off the pitch with Fletcher-Helps assistance. Hall over the set-piece sets her sights on goal but snatches her shot wide of the near post.

  Schug coming right for Blofield sees her cross cut out deflected behind for a corner kick one last chance for Blofield to try and find a goal the ball hooked in near side cleared to safety for a throw by North Walsham as the final whistle blows and their extend their winning streak to 6 games along with 5 consecutive clean sheets.

Full time North Walsham Angels Ladies 2-0 Blofield United Ladies

  Are an in form side and it showed today as North Walsham got on the front foot early on and never looked back pressing the ball a frantic tempo to the game both side full of energy after one another. North Walsham getting players on down the flanks creating opportunities forcing some good saves from Blofield keeper Jessica Luff before eventually taking the lead. 1 goal up at the break you sensed another was needed and North Walsham never let Blofield settle into a rhythm 2nd half attacking from the start Fletcher-Helps turning the defence, Hall scoring that all important 2nd goal. Blofield never really got going matching North Walsham for energy battled well enough but couldn’t get the rub of the green the ball more often than not cut out by a North Walsham shirt to get the host back on the offensive improved towards the last half hour but couldn’t find the goal that might have set up a nervous finish.

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

  Onto this afternoon’s Women’s Football East -Player of the Match as is so often the case another hard decision but there you go only highlights the performance level out there. A few performances of note. Freya Stewart-Miles with a number of vital tackles at the back for Blofield. Darcey Peters with a strong shift in the middle of the park getting about to challenge for the ball got forwards well to support the attack. Goalkeeper Jessica Luff with some impressive saves to help keep Blofield in the game. North Walsham with a confident squad right now a good team performance. Sophie Hall excellent in the middle winning the ball and getting forwards to join the attack. Rhiannon Holt out on the left causing Blofield problems throughout the first half. Now it comes down to two for the award and it’s close let me tell you. Elise Carroll was brilliant at the back for North Walsham winning the ball and protecting her goal throughout. Today’s award though goes to Stella Fletcher-Helps made some fantastic runs up top as well as coming for the ball and turning the defence unlucky not to score.

  An entertaining if high speed match between to young energetic sides that you can see will only get stronger. 6 points separating the top 6 in the league now with some big games to come and points to be won from one another plenty of football yet to be played will be interesting to see how it finishes. Both sides will play their part. My thanks to both for their help with the teams details today.

by Darren Gilham

Match Report – Long Stratton Women v North Walsham Angels Ladies

Sunday 25th April

NWGFL GiveToLocalUK Challenge Cup

A trip down the A140 in Norfolk this Sunday for the featured game on Women’s Football East. The NWGFL in Norfolk setting up a new competition to see out what’s let of the season with the regular one being declared null & void due to the ongoing Covid pandemic. An opportunity to see one of the few sides yet to appear in a match report for the first time Long Stratton Women as they host North Walsham Angels Ladies.

 The new competition the @GiveToLocalUK Challenge Cup seeing the teams entering from both Division One and Two drawn into 4 groups of  to 5 in a Champions/Europa League format playing each other once with the final standings seeing the teams positioned for the knock-out stages.  

Long Stratton Women and North Walsham Angels Ladies drawn in Group B along side Division One sides Dussindale & Hellesdon Women and Sprowston Athletic Ladies, both of who were amongst the title challengers before the season was curtailed. 

Long Stratton Women are an established side within the NWGFL, promoted back to Division One a couple of seasons ago were comfortable in mid-table before the season ended, the addition of Sam Walker to their attack adding a potent goal threat to an experienced group of players. As I said despite seeing them in action in a couple of pre-season friendlies with Bungay I’ve yet to see Long Stratton in competitive action and was keen to do so before the end of the season. Long Stratton beginning their Group B campaign away to Dussindale & Hellesdon last weekend without their goalkeeper, Walker donning the gloves herself was missed up front as Long Stratton went on to lose the game 5-0.

North Walsham Angels Ladies are too a side I yet to see play… at least this Angels side as the first side folded up at the end of the 2016/17 season having enjoyed a brief yet successful spell in the NWGFL. Missing for a couple of seasons North Walsham returned for the 2019/20 campaign a young squad with barely anyone from the original side left. Were finding their feet in Division Two just as the pandemic hit, Rhianne Holt top scoring with 10 goals. Keira Brown joining this season having had a fantastic season in front of goal for Bure Valley the season before, were looking to put pressure on the top three before seeing another season end. Placed into a tough group with three Division One sides. Will face Group rivals Sprowston Athletic Ladies two weekends in a row as the only Division Two side to reach the Norfolk Women’s County Cup quarter finals.

Has been difficult for anyone to develop a side during these past 12 months and hopefully better times are around the corner.

  Manor Road the venue for today’s match the council pavilion overlooking a multi-sports recreation ground, featuring numerous grass pitches, a skate park and playground. A public facility in the heart of Long Stratton. Fairly overcast making it feel cooler than in previous days, but when the sun could break through plenty of heat in it. A large pitch plenty of grass cover, even a sprinkling of dandelions.

Long Stratton Women starting XI – Kathryn Critchell, Emily Farmer, Karmen Harvey, Megan Vincent, Kate Ransome, Milly Cawcutt, Beth Stratton, Rachel Bussey, Annie Mayes, Sam Walker (C0 & Ellie Sostman. Subs – Harriet Hunwicks-Rush Megan Bird & Ellie Lyon

North Walsham Angels Ladies starting XI – Emily Penrose, Shannon Owen, Rhianne Hindle, Grace Hanley, Sophie Hall, Megan Briggs, Rhiannon Holt, Marth Wittrick-Riley, Jade Starling, Keira Brown & Lucy Taylor. Subs – Gracie East, Rio Dobbie & Mia Harris.

(roll on roll off substitutes)

 Emily Farmer and Rachel Bussey both starting for Long Stratton were regulars for the first incarnation of North Walsham Angels. Kathryn Critchell in goal for Long Stratton today seeing captain Sam Walker back up front leading the attack. The hosts wearing red shirts and socks with black shorts to kick-off the first half. North Walsham lined up opposite wearing black and white vertical striped shirts with black shorts and socks. The ball put back to the defence sent long out to the right side for Beth Stratton to chase early on, bounces once in the box before being safely claimed by North Walsham goalkeeper Emily Penrose. 

North Walsham play out from the back the ball helped on through the middle dropped in behind on the left with Keira Brown giving chase, Farmer forced to play it out for a throw deep inside the half. 

GOAL! Long Stratton win the ball back from the throw and launch a rapid attack down there left Farmer playing it down the line into the feet of Stratton 30 yards out she completes a neat triangle turning the ball forwards central to Walker making a run in the box gathering it inside the D, stapes to go left before checking back on her right to curl her shot past a defender and into the top right corner of the goal 1-0.

Long Stratton captain, Sam Walker on the ball opening the scoring

A great start from the Division One side taking the lead inside the opening 2 minutes of the match. The hosts on the front foot Farmer with a high ball from halfway, Ellie Sostman central tries to bring down under control, doesn’t quite manage it the ball running through to Penrose. Bussey lively in the opening minutes nipping into her challenges winning the ball moves into space on the right as Long Stratton counter Stratton central receiving the ball spinning her pass out to the left picked up by Bussey drives into the box, Grace Hanley getting onto her shoulder for North Walsham preventing a shooting opportunity taking it behind for the first corner of the game.

Long Stratton midfielder, Rachel Bussey

The corner is played long invitingly through the six yard box cleared at the far post Long Stratton close down quickly to keep the attack alive a cross turned in from the right dealt with by North Walsham captain Sophie Hall. Megan Hindle right side puts the ball on for Martha Wittrick-Riley as North Walsham attack up the wing Brown racing onto the forwards pass looking to take players on closed down by two defenders Long Stratton re quick to turn play around, Milly Cawcutt clearing the ball long Stratton on the shoulder of the last defender beating the offside flag strikes the bouncing ball early 20 yards out right of the D her attempt running wide of the post.

  Long Stratton getting attackers forwards in numbers Stratton and Annie Mayes out wide getting forwards to join Walker and Sostman putting the back four of North Walsham on the back foot. Megan Briggs with a crucial interception as the last defender for North Walsham to cut out a dangerous through ball from Bussey as Walker threatens to steal in behind. North Walsham’s opportunities limited up top are getting joy down the right with Brown on the ball and the bouncing ball is causing the Long Stratton defence problems.

 GOAL! A little over 10 minutes played and North Walsham come back to level the game a ball hit in behind bouncing sees Rhiannon Holt race through from midfield onto it showing a great turn of pace to out manoeuvre the Long Stratton defence takes the ball on into the area right side of goal, Critchell coming to close her down, Holt fires her shot past her and running towards the open goal beyond is an agonising chase for the defence as it rolls over the line 1-1.

Rhiannon Holt levelling the scores for North Walsham

  North Walsham having got themselves back on level terms defend at the back Hanley clearance up o the right collected by Brown, drives forwards before being clattered into as she makes the cross her diagonal ball just to close to the keeper at the near post as Holt makes the run to intercept, play brought back however for the foul on Brown. Nothing coming from it North Walsham win possession back in midfield Jade Starling picking out Wittrick-Riley breaking right flashes in a cross/shot over the crossbar.

North Walsham’s, Martha Wittrick-Riley

  Long Stratton defending a high line at times gives them the platform to press forwards in numbers as Walker moves out to the right, taking the ball on whipping a dangerous ball in across the top of the six yard box narrowly misses Sostman central, Hanley behind her attempts to clear for North Walsham doesn’t get it away the hosts pressuring to top right of the area, a scramble for the ball pops up for Ransome attempts to scoop her shot up wide across the keeper Penrose’s gloves up sharply to pluck the ball down into her body.

  Play at a rapid pace no one settling one allowed to settle on the ball, Bussey determined to travel with it whenever she has it at her feet, coming right is tackled well by Shannon Owen for North Walsham. Rio Dobbie joining the action for North Walsham. Hall coming to the left for North Walsham on the ball has Holt bolting past her looking for the past in behind, up the flank, Ransome stays on her into the area well to prevent her turning inside and getting a shot away. Hanley in to clear a bouncing ball central again sees Holt up in attack run clear of the defence 25 yards out has more time than she realises as she slices her first time effort wide.

Grace Hanley clearing the ball for North Walsham

  Holt moving into a more advanced position as given North Walsham the attacking impetus, isn’t pretty at times however the bouncing ball is being pressured well, Holt linking up with Wittrick-Riley right side he ball swung into the box is intercepted by Stratton coming all the way back into her box. Stratton running with the ball looking to power her way forwards covers the ground well, Walker moving left Sostman ahead of her, Hall putting the the tackle allowing North Walsham to regroup Bussey has it back spreads play to Stratton now on the left travels towards the area Hanley standing her up Stratton shoots the ball deflected by Hanley away for a corner.  

Beth Stratton on the attack for Long Stratton

  Is a very dangerous delivery from the corner bouncing through a crowded six yard box evading everyone Holt sending it behind for a corner on the opposite flank. Again the delivery from the right catches everyone out again even the taker is apologising thinking sees put into the near side netting but instead it stays in passing right in front of the goal line without now one moving. Collected by Long Stratton in the left corner put back to Walker who strikes it hard from the angle her shot going over the top.

 GOAL! Half an hour played and the hosts retake the lead the 2nd goal as with the first involving great link up play between Stratton and Walker. Stratton inside the North Walsham half seeing the ball played into her feet is aware of Walker making a run central merely helps the ball on into her path the striker taking it on towards the box right of goal has Briggs on her shoulder holds her off getting free to pick her shot send it angle across the keeper into the far corner of the net 2-1.

  From the restart North Walsham get the ball up the right winning a corner kick. Swung in near side the ball attacked in headed in across the face of goal, Stratton defending the far post heading the ball clear. 

 GOAL! As North Walsham commit more forwards they risk getting hit on the counter, Long Stratton quickly moving the ball forwards whenever the back four gain possession back, comes to Walker free on the left holds onto it gaining ground drawing players towards her before whipping in a fantastic cross into the middle of the area that falls invitingly to Sostman arriving unmarked, has tome to control the ball before scooping a rising shot high wide of the static keeper 3-1.

Ellie Sostman makes it 3-1 to Long Stratton

  Walker causing issues for the North Walsham defence with her movement drawing players to her creating space for Sostman and Stratton in particular to run into. 2 goals in 5 minutes seeing them gain the advantage.

 GOAL! 3 goals rapidly become 4 Long Stratton quick to bring the ball out from the back over half way into Sostman coming to the right opens up her body to send the diagonal ball angling into Walker making a left channel run gathering the ball runs at the area, Penrose off her line quickly coming to close her down, Walker experienced staying composed getting her shot away just into time beating the keeper, little power on the shot but placed perfectly as it trickles over the line Walker scoring a first half hat-trick 4-1.

   GOAL! The hosts running riot in the closing minutes of the first half to take total control of the game as they deliver another sucker punch to North Walsham. A throw inside the visitors half taken quickly into Walker’s feet she sweeps round to play the ball into Stratton racing in towards the top of the box who strikes it hard rifling her shot into the back of the net 5-1.

Beth Stratton adds a 5th goal for the hosts

 North Walsham blown away with 4 goals in quick succession from Long Stratton have made changes with Mia Harris and Gracie East coming on prior to the 4th goal look to regroup have a free kick on the right wide players up, Hall to put the ball in, Hanley gets a shot away on the angle the keeper misses it however the ball bounces wide of the far post. Harris central carries the ball on for North Walsham his clattered into the advantage played as the loose ball falls to Dobbie beside her lifts it forwards with Holt breaking in behind the bounce of the ball seeing it run through to the keeper before she can get there.

 GOAL! A late goal in the first half as North Walsham pull one back, Holt staying forwards is well placed right of the box as Hanley’s clearance bounces in behind the defence. Holt racing onto it pushes for the area into the top corner Critchell starts to come to close her down Holt releases her shot early putting it past her into the far corner 5-2.

 Time for one more attack from Long Stratton look a threat every time they go forwards Walker out wide with Mayes, a shot is driven in on the angle Penrose down low to her left stretching saves with her gloves managing to push the ball wide onto the post comes out and is cleared by Hall. 

North Walsham goalkeeper, Emily Penrose

Half-time Long Stratton Women 5-2 North Walsham Angels Ladies

 No doubt about it scoring 4 goals in quick succession late in the first half have seen Long Stratton take control of the game putting them in a solid position. Started well taking an early lead and looked a threat going forwards throughout the half. North Walsham however under pressure at times fought back to level the match and were causing problems of there own bypassing midfield at times the bouncing ball no easy to deal with. Play from back to front rapid from Long Stratton, Walker back up front always a clinical finisher, scoring 3 and setting up 2. North Walsham scoring a 2nd goal late in the half to give them some belief as they look put some pressure on 2nd half.

 The sun has been doing it’s best to break through the clouds has become a pleasant afternoon to play a game of football, both sides putting alot into the first half will be interesting to see if the tempo can be maintained 2nd half as North Walsham get things underway. Long Stratton though are straight on the front foot Bussey closing the ball down, into Harvey long up to Stratton on the right the cross swept in claimed by Penrose.

 North Walsham’s goalkeeper called into action moments later as she makes a brave save sliding in at the feet of Long Stratton’s Mayes as she receives a crossfield pass from the right, driving into the box from the left, the ball deflecting between attacker and keeper cleared by Hindle getting back to clear. A few positional changes for North Walsham in the 2nd half, Wittrick-Riley furthest forwards on the right in support of Holt central getting hold of the ball travelling into the box keeping possession to check inside and send a ball into the near post claimed well by Critchell low at her near post any mistake and Holt was racing in behind her.

  Long Stratton frustrated as a decision goes against them offside a free-kick to North Walsham inside their D the keeper hitting it long threatens to send Holt clear in behind but a good starting position from Critchell sees the keeper out of her area to send the ball back up field. A good contest in midfield shaping up Bussey busy as ever rives on only to be tackled well by Harris. Is physical too although without any obvious malice, both sides getting on with it. Hanley over a free-kick wide on the right, headed clear out of the Long Stratton Box, drops to East 30 yards out looks to ding it back over the top for Holt, the host defence stepping out well seeing her flagged offside.

  Harriet Hunwicks-Rush comes on for Long Stratton to replace Harvey. The hosts winning s free-kick 30 yards out on the left side Walker on it goes for goal her effort claimed high back on her line by Penrose. North Walsham are doing well to keep Mayes and Stratton quieter now Long Stratton sitting back comfortable with a 3 goal cushion however. Holt working hard up top but too often isolated does well on the right to win a free kick on the by-line. Hall playing it in across the face of goal is headed clear at the far post. North Walsham get it back the ball fired into Holt central outside the area her snap shot lacking power runs wide.

  The game has become a little scrappy both sides hitting it long looking for there attackers to break away. Holt with space to burst into in the left channel, Critchell comes charging out of her area to challenge Holt misses it is stranded as the loose ball is claimed out wide on the left red shirts racing back to close down angles prevent any attempt on goal. Vincent comes back on for Mayes for Long Stratton. Bussey taking the ball out to the right swinging in a deep cross too close to Penrose the keeper plucking the ball down safely.

  Good work from Long Stratton off a throw inside their own half on the left Bussey away up the wing comes inside, playing it on for Walker to take on top of the area 20 yards out moves across the D looking for an opening to release a shot, cutting it back in across goal Penrose comfortable on her line down to smother it. Cawcutt has picked up a knock needs to come off for Long Stratton, Harvey coming back on.

Harriet Hunwicks-Rush winning the ball back for Long Stratton

 Quieter in the 2nd half, North Walsham putting alot of effort in, Long Stratton able to sit back. Holt with a snap shot from 35 yards out left side not troubling the keeper. Sostman has been playing in a deeper role 2nd half, finding herself up with play exchanges a one two with walker 25 yards out that almost sees the latter slip in behind Hindle the defender with a timely lunge to take the ball. 

  Walker always looking for an opening drifts to the left the ball clipped into her surges forwards into the box East tracking her, Walker wants to check back on her right 8 yards out East setting in to nick the ball away from her. Walker nevertheless gets a 2nd bite at it crossing to the far post Stratton bringing it down is closed down quickly forced to play it back Harris winning it back. The game entering the final 20 minutes. Brown returning to the action for North Walsham.

North Walsham’s Gracie East

 GOAL! Long Stratton extend their lead Ransome on the ball central playing a great ball forwards for Walker to attack right side into the box on the shoulder of the last defender leans back as she strikes the ball putting power into her shot rifles it home for her 4th of the game 6-2.

 GOAL! Just as it was in the 1st half one goal quickly brings a 2nd another hammer blow for North Walsham as Long Stratton full of confidence now press forwards a throw high up the pitch left side played across the North Walsham defence. Walker snapping in to close the ball down steals the ball to cut in behind into the box and blast high into the back of the goal to claim her 5th of the game 7-2.

  Long Stratton find a renewed level of energy as they press the advantage have North Walsham on the back foot. Hanley having made several good challenges at the back doing well as Sostman pushes forwards left side. Starling returns to the action to replace Hindle for the visitors as the game enters the final 15 minutes. Wittrick-Riley up top along side Holt the pair are released in behind by Hall, Critchell coming out of her area again smashes her clearance against her own defender Harvey the deflection favouring the keeper however as she reacts to kick away before either attacker can turn.

  Hanley running towards her own goal doing well to deal with a long ball played up field by Long Stratton with Walker on her shoulder deftly heading it into her keepers gloves inside the box. Soon after Penrose carrying the ball out of her area gives away a free kick just outside the area. Walker placing the ball, Long Stratton making a change before it is taken Mayes back on for Sostman.

North Walsham’s Grace Hanley with Long Stratton’s, Kate Ransome

 GOAL! A free-kick in a dangerous position for Long Stratton left side inside the D, Walker on a double hat-trick takes on the shot, the North Walsham walk jumping as she looks to clip the ball over towards goal takes a wicked deflection knocking the ball downwards, Penrose wrong footed attempting to get down to it is unfortunately as it evades her clutches to cross the line 8-2. 

A double hat-trick for Long Stratton’s Sam Walker

 Walker is proving a real handful for the tiring North Walsham defence continues to create chances prods a shot wide across goal, takes a slight deflection off a defender however to see a corner awarded. left side swung in North Walsham defending at the far post have no one up can’t break. Hall nevertheless getting hold of the ball plays it up the line for Holt to chase the attacker doing what she can nut outnumbered is closed off the ball by Hunwicks-Rush. 

North Walsham captain, Sophie Hall

 Wittrick-Riley breaking free right side for North Walsham does well to get into the box checks inside before crossing the high ball collected by Critchell. Hanley right charges down Stratton ending the ball up top for Holt to attack, Critchell coming out of her box again to close her down top of the D does enough to put Holt off forcing her into an early strike that lacks power and accuracy. 

 Despite conceding three goals late in the 2nd half North Walsham keep up their efforts to find another goal from a throw on the right inside the Long Stratton half Holt lays the ball inside for Starling she in turn feeds a diagonal ball through the middle for Wittrick-Riley to race onto, Critchell has come committed drops to close the angle deflected the ball away, Wittrick-Riley’s momentum sees her collide with the keeper, a moment of concern but both players are okay, Critchell undoubtedly feeling it more. One more chance comes to Wittrick-Riley right to cross the ball in find Holt near post but once again Critchell is well placed to intercept the ball.

Full time Long Stratton Women 8-2 North Walsham Angels Ladies

  Long Stratton win the Group B match comfortably to claim their 1st points in the Challenge Cup. The Division One side starting the game well taking an early lead. Never what a lower division side wants however North Walsham fought back well the level the game. Long Stratton always looked a potent threat going forwards and creating openings took their chances hitting in 4 quickfire goals to leave North Walsham with a mountain to climb. A late goal giving the visitors some belief reshaped 2nd half containing Long Stratton whilst never finding the goal they needed to exert some pressure of their own. In the end a repeat of the 1st half Long Stratton finally scoring a 6th were quick to add 2 more. An 8-2 score line maybe harsh on North Walsham a young side with lots of potential  Will give Long Stratton plenty of belief going into their final group game against Sprowston Athletic.

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

 Onto this Sunday’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match. Often a difficult choice however not the case today I suspect you’ve already picked her yourself. Before that however a few notable performances to mention. Firstly for North Walsham, Rhiannon Holt was superb in attack doing well to lead the lone when called upon took her chances well. Sophie Hall and Grace Hanley too with some good challenges throughout the match. For Long Stratton, Beth Stratton was superb especially first half and for a while was neck and neck with the eventual winner. Rachel Bussey too put herself about in the middle of the park never letting North Walsham settle on the ball. The award though has to go to Sam Walker scoring a double hat-trick and assisting with the other 2 goals showing fantastic movement leading the attack throughout the 90 minutes.

A pleasure to see both sides in action today, a good match despite the final score line another new side checked off, and I’m sure I’ll be seeing both in action again soon. As always the help with the team details is much appreciated.

by Darren Gilham

Norfolk Finals Day – North Walsham Angels Ladies v Sprowston Ladies

Norfolk Ladies League Plate Final

Sunday 6th May

 The cup final action on Women’s Football East continues this Sunday with a double bill from Norfolk, later on the Ladies League Cup Final but first up an 11am kick-off for the Ladies Plate Final this season being contested by previous Plate winners, North Walsham Angels Ladies taking on Sprowston Ladies.

 The sides entering the Norfolk Ladies League Plate after being knocked out of the early rounds in the League Cup.

 North Walsham Angels Ladies were the 1st ever winners of the Norfolk Ladies League Plate competition when it was 1st introduced in the 2015/16 season, beat Red Rose 4-0 to lift the Plate. Into the Plate Final once again looking to end the season on a high. Having gotten off to a promising start in the Norfolk Women’s Division One this season had suffered from a period with a lack of games losing momentum results since have been inconsistent. Haven’t scored as many goals as last year, the Middleton sisters Luci & Hope netting 69 goals between them last season. 

 Sprowston Ladies step up to the league from U16 football and have adapted to women’s football very well, leading the table early on have kept up their in contention all season dropping to 2nd as Bungay Town Ladies overhaul them 3 points ahead with one more to play win that and even maximum points for Sprowston’s remaining 2 games will most likely not be enough with Bungay having a superior goal difference. Bungay’s last game is this coming Thursday at home to Gorleston FC Ladies, after that result Sprowston will know what they have to do. Runners-up spot in their debut season is most certainly on. Bungay slip up and who knows. On top of that were also semi-finalists in this years People’s FA Cup having been amongst the winners season before.

Road to the Final

  Both sides were knocked out of the League Cup by Stalham Town Ladies, Sprowston 1st Round then North Walsham fell to defeat in the 2nd Round. A bye for Sprowston in the 1st Round of the Plate competition. North Walsham were 4-0 away winners against fellow Division One side Long Stratton Ladies.

  It was North Walsham’s turn to progress without kicking a ball in the quarter finals awarded the away win against Costessey Sports Ladies. Sprowston were at home against Division Two title chasers Beccles Town Ladies. A comfortable 6-0 win seeing them into the last 4 of the competition.

  North Walsham were scheduled to play Kirkley & Pakefield Ladies in the semi-finals nut once again their opponents pulled out meaning North Walsham as much as they’d have rather played the game were into the final. Sprowston were taken all the way to penalties by their semi-final opponents Wymondham Ladies Reserves. Both sides getting a goal in the first half couldn’t be separated the game going to a shootout Sprowston celebrating in the finish reaching the final with a 3-2 win.

The venue for today’s Norfolk Ladies League Plate & Cup Finals aswell as the Final of the Women’s 7’s between Hellesdon Belles & Costessey Sports Ladies, once again Plantation Park, home Norwich United and Norwich City Ladies. It was again another beautiful sunny day for the Final’s got sun burnt last year, pretty sure it’ll happen this time around too, always have to burn before I’ll get a tan. Not a cloud in the sky, cool in the shady spots thankfully. The pitch looking fairly dry and firm offers plenty of width. Been a while since I’ve been to the ground, new dugouts replacing the old brick ones. 

North Walsham Angels Ladies starting XI – Jade Knight, Lauren Yarham, Gemma Newell, Hannah Sturman, Robyn Johnston, Sian Wager (C), Charlotte Darvill, Abbie Storey, Rachel Bussey, Mary-Anne Hoy & Luci Middleton. Subs – Emma Faux, Hope Middleton & Alice Wardle.

Sprowston Ladies starting XI – Megan Lightfoot, Jade Mundford, Ria Drake, Paige Barnard, Calista Tink, Chelsea Brister, Abbi Nobbs, Rebecca Russell, Abby Hutchin (C), Chelsea Pettifer & Victoria Leyer. Subs – Becky Greenslade & Jenny Trenholm.

(roll on roll off substitutes)

  It’s Sprowston to kick off the Plate Final wearing orange shirts with black across the right shoulder and sleeve, black shorts with orange and black hooped socks. North Walsham lined up opposite wearing white shirts, black shorts and black and white hooped socks. Sprowston attack down the left wing the ball played into the top of the area North Walsham defend the rebound picked up by Sprowston’s Victoria Leyer she strikes the ball form 20 yards out Jade Knight in the North Walsham goal can see it out wide across the six yard box.

   A free-kick on the halfway line for Sprowston, Calista Tink over the ball plays it long up to the left wing, Lauren Yarham defending for North Walsham prevents a cross coming into the box. Abbi Storey winning the ball in the midfield for North Walsham looks to play the ball out to the right wing the pass cut out the ball is gathered by North Walsham captain Sian Wager breaking forwards has a strike from distance her effort sent wide of goal. 

Sprowston Ladies, Calista Tink

  Ria Drake cuts the ball out on the right as North Walsham look to build an attack a throw in North Walsham work the ball towards the Sprowston box, Wager playing the ball into the middle of the D, Mary-Anne Hoy seeing the ball into her feet spins away to the left getting into a shooting position inside the area pulls the trigger, Sprowston goalkeeper, Megan Lightfoot making a great save diving to her right to get her glove on the low ball. 

 A good start to the match from North Walsham as they attack Luci Middleton getting played in behind the Sprowston defence sends her strike from 20 yards out past the advancing keeper, cheers go up from the crowd but they are premature as the ball strikes the base of the post and bounces out across the face of goal, Hoy racing in to latch onto it, a Sprowston defender gets back in the nick of time to slide in and take the ball away for a corner kick.

North Walsham Angels Ladies, Luci Middleton

 A lively start to the game North Walsham showing attacking intent, Sprowston defend the corner kick and launch a rapid counter attack Leyer going after the ball played up the line right side, Charlotte Darvill getting back on her to tackle and put the ball out for a throw. Another free-kick on halfway for Sprowston a good delivery from Tink up towards the left corner of the area the ball headed down, Rebecca Russell getting hold of it drives forwards into the box, North Walsham quick to close her down the ball cleared. 

Sprowston Ladies, Abbi Nobbs

  Abbi Nobbs with a good tackle to break up the attack as North Walsham come through the middle Johnston on for Wager. Wager coming inside from a throw in on the left inside the Sprowston half has another pop at goal from 30 yards out her strike on target drops safely into the arms of Lightfoot coming across to her right post. 

North Walsham captain, Sian Wager about to strike the ball

  GOAL! A free-kick awarded to Sprowston in a dangerous area just outside the area, as Jenny Tranholm is clipped in a coming together of legs as she looks to break through on goal feed the ball by Leyer through the middle. Russell positions the ball left side of the D half a yard outside the area, drills a low strike in past the wall evading everyone as it races into the bottom corner bouncing back out of the net as it strike the read supporting post 0-1.

Rebecca Russell’s free-kick finds its way into the bottom corner to give Sprowston the lead

 North Walsham making a change Emma Faux joining the action. Faux with an early opportunity to get the ball forwards brings it on before trying to release Hoy coming in from the left into the area, the ball claimed by Lightfoot. Hutchin with a strong run forwards on the left for Sprowston, Yarham slowing her down the ball put inside for Russell slid forwards into the box Leyer the target, Hannah Sturman cutting it out for North Walsham. 

Sprowston goalscorer, Rebecca Russell

  A bit of ping ball in the middle of the park results in the ball popping over the North Walsham defence, Leyer after in a chase towards the box Darvill on her shoulder, Reaching the top of the area Leyer shoots Knight having started to come stands tall saves with her legs as the ball comes at her quickly. Leyer played on through the middle is adjudged to bring North Walsham’s Darvill down as the pair come together as they race for the box, play pulled back even as Leyer puts the ball into the back of the net.

Sprowston work the ball on through the middle Russell on for Leyer, Pettifer to her right, Sturman winning it back for North Walsham as the 1st half moves into the final 5 minutes. Yarham getting forwards on the right collides with Lightfoot at the corner of the area as both slide in on the ball. Play stretched late on Darvill getting forwards on the left for North Walsham is tackled the ball out for a throw into the middle Sprowston counter the ball on for Russell breaking forwards, Sturman stepping out of the back line to put in the challenge. 

Sprowston’s Chelsea Pettifer with North Walsham’s Abbie Storey

Into stoppage time North Walsham on the attack, Lightfoot just about getting hold of a ball played into her area from a free-kick wide left. North Walsham regaining possession Hoy out on the left tries to get a cross in the ball cut out comes to Darvill she plays a good delivery into the area Middleton rising in the middle of the box in front of goal puts her header straight at Lightfoot the goalkeeper holding onto the ball.  

Half-time Sprowston Ladies 1-0 North Walsham Angels Ladies

  An entertaining opening 45 minutes of this season Norfolk Ladies Plate Final. North Walsham have had the better chances to score but it’s Sprowston who have take theirs to lead the game 1-0 at the break. North Walsham starting brightly Lightfoot with a smart save, the woodwork struck too. Sprowston getting the ball forwards well haven’t had many clear chances at goal, taking advantage of the set-piece awarded to them to open the scoring. Promises to be a close 2nd half.

North Walsham to kick-off the 2nd half, have Hope Middleton on the right in place of Bussey. A throw on the right fro North Walsham inside the Sprowston half Luci Middleton attempting to turn inside get into the box Paige Barnard with a good tackle to stop her. Faux bringing the ball on through the middle moving right sends it on for Hope Middleton up the line her cross in near post initially cut out Luci Middleton going to retrieve right of goal on the six yard box spins and sends a high ball back in towards goal, Barnard up to head the ball behind for the corner.

North Walsham Angels Ladies, Gemma Newell

   Sprowston with possession on the right, Newell conceding the throw in played inside to Leyer right corner outside the area sees the ball into her feet turns and shoots her effort over the goal. Leyer with a run centrally on the ball, closed down plays it on for Russell right side her shot from outside the box charged down. Johnston off for North Walsham Storey back on. Hutchin with a run inside from the left the ball sent into the box gathered by Knight. 

  Progress up the pitch on the left North Walsham get a throw in the ball helped on into the area for a moment Hope Middleton is in the clear baring down on goal, Drake getting back on her with the touch to take the ball from the striker, Lightfoot getting hold of it. Good defensive work at the other end from Yarham as the ball is played through the middle, both Hutchin and Leyer going for it for Sprowston. 

  GOAL! 20 minutes played in the 2nd half and North Walsham find the equalising goal. Storey with the assist through the middle picking the ball up and sending it through for Hope Middleton making the central run Lightfoot comes rushing out to the edge of the area Middleton shooting getting the ball past her and into the back of the empty net 1-1. 

Sprowston’s Paige Barnard with North Walsham’s Hope Middleton

  Lightfoot with a good save under pressure as she is closed down by Luci Middleton at her near post the striker looking to get onto the end of a high ball into the area from Hope Middleton top of the area the keeper coming and punching the ball off her head, then dropping down to claim it before Middleton can react. 

 GOAL! 3 minutes after losing their lead Sprowston get themselves back into the lead. Leyer with the strike as she runs into space behind the North Walsham defence as the ball is pressed in the middle, shooting from 25 yards out drives the ball across the keeper into the back of the net 2-1.

Victoria Leyer restores Sprowston Ladies lead

  Johnston is back on for North Walsham. A good tempo to the match both sides closing the ball down. Faux onto Johnston out to Hope Middleton right side, Drake challenging getting the ball back. Hutchin driving at the North Walsham defence gets inside looking to slide the ball into the area for Leyer, Yarham can let it go through to the keeper. Bussey back on for North Walsham, Becky Greenslade on for Sprowston. 

Hannah Sturman clears the ball for North Walsham Angels Ladies

  Brister does well for Sprowston at the back up against Luci Middleton trying to get a shot away as she gets into the box. Yarham intercepting at the back as Russell looks to put her in behind. PENALTY! Bussey central on for Luci Middleton to her right gets into the area tries to turn make room for a shot is clipped by Pettifer the spot kick given. Bussey to take it driven in low too close to Lightfoot who guesses right down low shifting to her right makes the save the ball looping up off her Luci Middleton quickest to react getting her foot under the ball sends it across the six yard box.

  A save up the other end moment later, Leyer with a run on the left coming into towards goal tries to slot the ball past Knight the keeper making the save. That’s it the final whistle blows a save from the penalty spot by Lightfoot in the closing minutes keeping Sprowston’s 2-1 lead in tact they they win there first piece of silverware.

Full time Sprowston Ladies 2-1 North Walsham Angels Ladies

  A narrow win for Sprowston Ladies taking their chances and holding out late on North Walsham coming close to forcing the Final into extra-time. An entertaining game two lively and well matched sides. North Walsham will feel disappointed created more chances than their opponents just weren’t converted into goals. Sprowston having an excellent season with such a young side adapting to the women’s league very well have a tremendous work-rate and an abundance of energy. Getting back on players when it looks like they have gotten away from them.  

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

  Picking the Women’s Football East – Player of the Match for this one is incredibly tough everyone put in a shift today for both sides. Abbie Storey in midfield for North Walsham making some important tackles and playing it forwards was impressive. The award however goes to Sprowston’s Paige Barnard strong in the middle of defence or coming out wide to prevent a cross. Play was turned around so quickly at times there was only time to write 16 stops… before your attention has to go down the other end of the pitch.

Sprowston Ladies 2017/18 Norfolk Ladies League Plate Winners

  Congratulation’s to Sprowston Ladies on winning this season’s Norfolk Ladies League Plate Final.

  One final down one to come. My thanks to both clubs for there help with the teams. Good to catch up with both.


Match Report – Kings Lynn Town Ladies v North Walsham Angels Ladies

This weekends football on the Supporting Women’s Football Blog came from Norfolk a top of the table clash in Division One with 2nd placed North Walsham Angels Ladies newly promoted this season travelling to play 3rd placed Kings Lynn Town Ladies who were unbeaten winning all of their league matches since an opening day defeat.

Match Report – Kings Lynn Town Ladies v North Walsham Angels Ladies

   A top of the table clash from Norfolk this Sunday a trip west along the A47 to watch the Women’s Division One encounter between 3rd placed Kings Lynn Town Ladies taking on 2nd placed North Walsham Angels Ladies.

  Both sides were formed in the 2014/15 season and have both enjoyed 2 progressive seasons since. Kings Lynn Town Ladies are now affiliated with the men’s side renamed at the start of the season having been Lynn Ladies previously playing their football in West Lynn, earning promotion to Division One in their debut season a 5th place finish in the top league in Norfolk last season. The union with Kings Lynn Town FC has seen them strengthen over the close season with a good pre-season including a 2-2 draw with a West Ham United Ladies Development side at The Walks where they will be playing their County Cup matches this season. Suffered a heavy defeat on the opening day of the season away to current Division One pace setters Thorpe United Ladies. Have recovered since going on a 5 match winning run to sit in 3rd place in the table one of those wins away from home against today’s opponents a 4-2 win at the end of September. 

  One of only two defeats in the league for North Walsham Angels Ladies so far this season since earning promotion from Division Two last season. A young side hungry for success, have started the season well. 18 points from 8 played to sit 3 points behind leaders Thorpe United Ladies the other side to have beaten them this season edging North Walsham out in a 4-3 win. Are the leagues top scorers having netted 46 goals from their opening 8 games with an average of 5.75 goals per match. Sisters Luci and Hope Middleton both scoring plenty of goals for the side.

  Both sides winning by double figure scorelines last Sunday to collect the 3 points, not expecting a 0-0 today. The venue for today’s match the Riverlane Playing Fields in Gaywood in Kings Lynn a multi-sports facility 2 football pitches plus other amenities. Alot of rain around yesterday however with a dry but overcast Sunday to follow the game was on plus an opportunity to squeeze in the last round of Xmas shopping.

  Kings Lynn Town Ladies starting XI – Cristina Viva Artacho, Vikki Budulyte, Antonia Flack, Millie Wilson, Albany Hodgson, Taylor Sarchet, Bethan Jones, Natalie Bunton, Becky Russell, Shelley Woods (C) & Josie Turner.
  subs – Emma Woods, Lisa Wilson & Oksana Imanalijeva. 

  North Walsham Angels Ladies starting XI – Cyan Fulbrook, Sian Wager (C), Rosie Filby, Bethany Childs, Hannah Roe, Alicia lacey, Lauren Yarham, Rachel Bussey, Hope Middleton, Alice Wardle & Luci Middleton.

  subs – Emily Farmer & Robyn Johnson.

(roll on roll off substitutes)

  The pitch for today’s game is fairly short, North Walsham have kick-off 1st half wearing white shirts with black shorts and black and white hooped socks with Kings Lynn lined up opposite wearing yellow shirts with blue shorts and socks. The visitors go on the attack from the off Rachel Bussey into Lauren Yarham through the middle looks to play the ball over the top through the middle of the Kings Lynn defence with Luci Middleton making the run across the centre backs to get in behind, Albany Hodgson playing at centre back for Kings Lynn gets her head on the ball to clear the threat.
   Luci Middleton on the ball down the right forces the throw deep in the Kings Lynn half the ball is cleared by Taylor Sarchet falls for North Walsham’s Alicia Lacey a summer signing from Aylsham FC Ladies sends the ball in towards the top of the area with Yarham looking to run across the D, a meaty challenge from Hodgson gets the ball away upending Yarham in the process play continues, a counter attack from Kings Lynn the ball played upfield helped on by captain Shelley Woods playing it over the top for Josie Turner to chase into the area forces North Walsham into conceding the 1st corner of the match.
  Minutes into the game and it clear it’s going to be played at a fast tempo the Kings Lynn corner comes to nothing the ball back with North Walsham is soon up the other end a chance out of nothing the ball running long into the box goalkeeper Christina Viva Artacho sliding in to gather the ball looks comfortable with Luci Middleton closing in, the ball is split loose beyond the keeper Middleton gets after it right of the goal leaning back as she tries to place the ball into an empty net doen’t get a good connection with the ball falls wide into the side netting.
  Sarchet plays the ball up the pitch for Turner out on the left making the run forwards has Woods making a run inside her plays the ball into her feet takes on the shot from the top of the box the ball racing wide across the face of goal. On the opposite flank Becky Russell comes on with the ball looking to drive into the box, North Walsham’s Bethany Childs gets across her puts the ball out for the corner. The set-piece is played long beyond the far post Turner heads the ball down towards goal, keeper Cyan Fulbrook stops it but doesn’t collect running loose inside the six yard box, Bethan Jones latches onto the ball tries to hit it goalwards, is deflected wide out to Turner still at far post sends her shot wide of the post.
Kings Lynn Town Ladies, Taylor Sarchet
  Kings Lynn continue to press forwards getting width the ball played on for Natalie Bunton on the right whips in an early cross with Turner the target in a central position inside the box looks to see the ball across her hit it on the turn, closely marked by North Walsham’s Hannah Roe the defender reads it gets her foot onto the falling ball pushes it clear of the area. Jones plays the ball on for Vikki Budulyte getting forwards from right back on the right sends the ball up the wing for Bunton driving on with the ball sends a diagonal ball in towards to near post Turner sliding in to reach it is beaten by the North Walsham defence.
  A few tempers are getting frayed out there on the field players from both sides unhappy with challenges and some afters that aren’t needed nor being picked up by the referee. Sarchet getting hold of the ball in the middle of the park for Kings Lynn plays it forwards the long pass picking out Turner on the moves through the centre 20 yards out goes to shoot early pulls the ball wide of the North Walsham goal. 
  GOAL! 12 minutes on the clock and Kings Lynn having started the game well get themselves into the lead. Sarchet and Jones get the ball up the pitch out with Woods on the left side lines up a shot from distance 30 yards out sends the ball in towards goal looping up and dropping, Fulbrook gets her gloves up to the ball but can’t keep it out as it drops over the line to make it 1-0.
  Fulbrook reacts quickly as Kings Lynn get back on the ball from the restart play it long for Bunton on the move to get into the box from the right side, the North Walsham keeper winning the race to the ball sliding in to clear with her shins. The afters are continuing still nothing is being done, the crowd is starting to get involved too. Russell pushing up on the right with the ball sends in a low cross along the six yard box, no one coming in through the middle Woods from the left is 1st to it far post a tame shot however is easily gathered by Fulbrook. 
A competitive encounter all over the park
  A good through ball by Lacey releases Hope Middleton on the left is in behind the Kings Lynn defence carries the ball on into the box looking to come inside to shoot, Budulyte gets back on her sliding in does enough to prevent Middleton shooting, retaining possession turns back out of the area moving across the D gets a shot away the ball charged down by the Kings Lynn defence. Good pressing from Luci Middleton on the right side squares the ball into the middle with Yarham quickest to the ball, turns inside hits a shot from outside the box races wide across the goal out for a goal kick.
  GOAL! 20 minutes into a busy 1st half and Kings Lynn double their lead have players forwards from a previous attack the ball is won in the middle played out to the left side Turner and Woods are out on that side the ball is fired low into the area Sarchet has it at her feet back to goal at the near post lays it back out of the area directly to Russell who has her leg pulled back ready to recieve the ball hits the shot in towards goal skiping along the ground sneaks inside the post Fulbrook diving in vain 2-0.
  North Walsham are rattled losing a bit of composure feel they aren’t getting the decisions. So to however do Kings Lynn, players on both sides needing to calm down, not getting phyiscal hands on mind, both sides just feeling something needs to be done and isn’t and the person being asked the question is the referee. Yarham is putting alot into the midfield contest ingoring a kick on the knee continues to make a run through the middle almost releases Luci Middleton in behind only for her to be stopped by the offside flag.
  GOAL! North Walsham pull a goal back 5 minutes after going 2-0 down pushing forwards the ball is sent forwards cleared back out to the middle, Lacey picks it up gets a lot of power on the ball as she drills it through the middle with Luci Middleton the target in between the Kings Lynn defence lined up along the top of the box, a defender lunges sticking out a leg to try and cut out the ball instead it deflects up off the leg into the area, Middleton breaking in behind is after it running right of goal sends her shot past the keeper into the back of the net 2-1.
North Walsham Angels Ladies
Luci Middleton
  Kings Lynn make a change, Oksana Imanalijeva coming on for Bunton on the right. Is involved in the action straight away as Kings Lynn are awarded a free kick on the right inside the North Walsham half the ball played up into the box by Hodgson is headed out of the area by Lacey, comes back to Russell outside the box on th right plays it inside to Imamalijeva inside the D stabs a 1st time shot in towards goal the ball running along the ground straight into Fulbrook who sees the ball up into her gloves.
  A throw for North Walsham deep on the right Wager playing the ball into Luci Middleton lays it back for Alice Wardle who sends an good cross into the box, Lacey arriving near post lifts a leg six yards out knocks the ball down into the ground Millie Wilson throwing herself at it takes the pace of the ball as it runs on for Vivas Artacho to save beyond. Up the other end Fulbrook saves at the near post as Woods drives in a shot from the left the ball not held by the keeper rebounds into the path of Turner, she is quickly closed down by Childs under challenge can’t get her shot on target.
Alice Wardle on the ball for
North Walsham Angels Ladies
  A double switch for Kings Lynn, Turner and Flack off, Emma Woods and Lisa Wilson on the switch sees Russell take up the central attacking role. Jones on for Shelley Woods on the left side rolls the ball on for Russell drifting that side shoots from the top of the box her low drove saved by Fulbrook diving at her near post pushing the ball behind for a corner on the left. Is a vicious ball flashed in across the six yard box bouncing at the far post Imanalijeva lunging at it can’t connect to turn it in. 
  Now anyone reading one of my match reports has probably guessed I write extensive notes, sometimes I preempt whether there is going to be a card shown write it in the notes, should/could have been 6 in the game so far and 2 of those would have equalled a red, that said no cards have been shown yet despite tempers continuing to flare and some poor challenges being shown, no doubt it has affected North Walsham more than Kings Lynn but both sides aggrieved the referee opting to have a word with the supporters instead.
  GOAL! Right no the stroke of half-time Kings Lynn get the ball up the other end and score a 3rd goal. The ball is fed up through the middle into Russell making a run to get into the box left side of the goal, has Childs in front of her with Fulbrook coming off her line a mix up the two come together fail to clear the ball runs past them, Russell after it latches onto the ball and lifts it into the empty net beyond 3-1.
Half-time Kings Lynn Town Ladies 3-1 North Walsham Angels Ladies

Plenty happening in that 1st 45 minutes on and off the ball a committed contest both sides using the short pitch to full affect the play has been fast paced the tempo high little time for anyone on the ball, everywhere on the pitch players have been quick to close down, Kings Lynn starting the better getting into the lead, both sides getting under the others skins the home side dealing with it better ending the half 3-1 in front as both teams coaches wander onto the pitch to have a word with the referee at half time.

Kings Lynn Town Ladies, Bethan Jones

A change in the sky at the start of the 2nd half the clouds breaking and the low setting sun blazing the sky amber behind one of the goals, which North Walsham with have at their backs 2nd half as they look to try and compose themselves and get back into the game. The visitors making a change at half-time Hope Middleton off, Emily Farmer on. Kings Lynn kicking off the 2nd half press forwards the ball with Russell on the right looks to play Shelley Woods in as she makes a run in behind into the box is marked well by Wager the North Walsham captain who clears the ball back out to the right the ball is played back into the top of the area Woods seeing it into her body turns to strike the ball goalwards doesn’t make a clean connection with the ball rolls safely into Fulbrook covering her near post.

  Getting the ball forwards on the right side of the pitch North Walsham win themselves a corner kick, the ball is fired in near post Yarham making a run towards the ball flicks it on falls to Wardle top of the area, smashes the ball goalwards her strike charged down the ball picked up from deep a shot is sent back in well over the goal. Early possession inside the Kings Lynn half from North Walsham, Rosie Filby winning the ball playing it into Lacey who passes it out to the left winning a corner players go forwards the ball sent in near post both Luci Middleton and Lacey attack it, Lacey with the header puts the ball behind for a goal-kick.
Kings Lynn Town Ladies, Emma Woods with
North Walsham Angels Ladies, Lauren Yarham
  Lacey gets forwards from the middle as Luci Middleton picks the ball up in the centre of the Kings Lynn half looks to pass the ball into Lacey’s path as she looks to break into the box, Wilson does well at the back for Kings Lynn getting across to intercept the ball. Wardle is brought down 30 yards from goal in a central position a free-kick for North Walsham. Roe is over the ball takes on the strike getting the ball up and over the players lined up across the top of the area is straight at Vivas Artacho who claims hold of the ball.
  GOAL! 10 minutes into the 2nd half and North Walsham’s positive start to the 2nd half sees them pull a goal back. Breaking from the back the ball is played up the park quickly into the middle out to the left the early cross played long into the box stretching the Kings Lynn defence, Lacey making the run to get into the box through the middle arrives at the penalty spot throwing herself at the ball turns it past Vivas Artacho into the back of the net 3-2.
North Walsham Angels Ladies,
Alicia Lacey
 Kings Lynn attack the ball is with Wilson on the left half way lifts the ball over the top of the North Walsham defence for Shelley Woods to chase taking the ball down the line works her way inside getting into the box evading a challenge before shooting aiming the ball in towards the near post the shot lacking power Fulbrook gas it covered near post. Russell taking the ball on out to the right side gets the pass in behind down the wing for Imanalijeva taking the ball into the corner looks to cross, Filby gets back on her to tackle put the ball out for a throw. Cleared back to the halfway line Kings Lynn are awarded a free kick, Hodgson puts the ball up into the D, Russell looking to bring the ball down can’t turn into her shot before Farmer gets it away from danger. 
   North Walsham make a change bringing Roe off and putting Hope Middleton back on as they look for an equalising goal. Lacey plays the ball up to Hope Middleton on the right side takes the ball inside evading a challenge sends the ball in towards Wardle making a far post run, Budulyte has tracked her and does well prevent her reaching the ball. Kings Lynn make a change sending Turner back on up front with Wilson coming off at the back with 20 minutes of the game left the lead still 3-2.
  A card is shown with Hope Middleton yellow carded for a push in the back. The free kick in the middle of the park comes to nothing the ball won by North Walsham played long up the left with Filby getting forwards for the visitors driving inside towards the box manages to squeeze a shot away flying past the advancing Vivas Artacho into the side netting taking a deflection on the way for a corner kick the ball cleared near post by Kings Lynn. 
  Sarchet gets hold of the ball after coming out the better from a full on 50/50 challenge taking the ball on through the middle passes the ball on for Turner making a run into the box Fulbrook comes racing off her line to close her down Turner gets the ball past her but also wide of the goal beyond. It’s mid-December the light is beginning to fade quickly the sun falling below the horizon with 10 minutes of the game left to play. Luci Middleton is left a little dizzy on the floor as she gets a heavy touch on the ball trying to head it away.
  Yarham picks up the ball in the middle plays it into Hope Middleton all of 30 yards out flicks the ball up and hits it on the turn bouncing in the box drifting away from goal Viva Artacho gathers. Launches it up field helped on one touch runs forwards into Turner breaking through the middle meeting it top of the box spins and pulls her shot away from goal. 5 minutes of the game left, Luci Middleton has dropped into the defence for North Walsham in the latter stages takes another knock as she and Woods challenge for the ball a painful blow to the jaw on landing. 
  GOAL! Into the latter stages of the game and with the play stretched North Walsham taking a few risks going forwards Kings Lynn having ridden out the pressure restore their 2 goal cushion. Counter attacking the ball played out to the right Imanalijeva and Russell link up before the ball is crossed into the box Turner making the run near side latching onto the ball and sending it across the keeper into the bottom corner 4-2.
  Into injury time and possession is with Kings Lynn Russell holds the ball up on the left side off a throw in before turning and lifting it over the top into the box for Shelley Woods her strike is straight at Fulbrook who gets her gloves around the ball. Kings Lynn with a free-kick wide on the right inside the North Walsham half Jones plays the ball long into the box both Russell then Turner in front of her can’t get a touch to turn it home the flag up however as Turner strays offside. Doesn’t matter however as the final whistle blows at Kings Lynn Town Ladies win the 3 points.
Full time Kings Lynn Town Ladies 4-2 North Walsham Angels Ladies

 A good result for Kings Lynn Town Ladies moving level on points with North Walsham with 18, have 2 matches in hand. Both 3 points of leaders Thorpe United Ladies. A strong 1st half display, dealt with North Walsham well as they pressed 2nd half after what was a difficult 1st half. Not the best game you’ll see by any stretch and it’s a pity as both sides can play better, got under each others skins today. A learning curve. Both Kings Lynn Town Ladies and North Walsham Angels Ladies are a rising force in Women’s football in Norfolk and ending 2016 well can only get better in 2017.
   My thanks to both clubs for their help with the teams always appreciated, see you in the New Year.

Plate Final Report – North Walsham Angels Ladies v Red Rose Ladies

  The 1st of 2 match reports from covered on the Supporting Women’s Football Blog this Sunday. Finals day in the Norfolk Women’s & Girls Football League (NWGFL) 4 finals played at Plantation Park the 1st kicking off at 12:30pm for the League Plate a new competition introduced this season, featuring 2 sides playing in their 1st ever final game too, North Walsham Angels Ladies v Red Rose Ladies. 

Cup Final Report – North Walsham Angels Ladies v Red Rose Ladies

  This Sunday is Finals day in the Norfolk Women & Girls Football League (NWGFL) played at Plantation Park home of Norwich United FC & Norwich City Ladies. 4 finals being played at the venue today, The Women’s League Cup and Plate Finals as well as the U15s League Cup Final and Women’s 7’s Final. Here to watch the 1st of the women’s finals the Plate Final between North Walsham Angels Ladies & Red Rose Ladies.

  The NWGFL Plate is a new competition introduced this season with the 16 sides that didn’t reach the quarter finals of the Women’s League Cup going into the 1st Round draw.

Road to the Final
   North Walsham Angels Ladies were formed 2 seasons ago and have achieved promotion from Division Two to Division One this season now have a chance to add a piece of silverware cap off a good season. Were awarded a home win against Freethorpe Ladies in the 1st Round to advance to the quarter finals to play at home again testing themselves against higher league opposition taking on Bungay Town Ladies. Hit 7 goals to win 7-3 and progress into the semi-finals where they had the luck of a home draw once again taking on fellow Division Two side Morley Ladies. A comfortable 4-0 sent them through to the final.
  Opponents Red Rose Ladies had the opposite run to the final with all of their ties away from home. Like North Walsham Angels Ladies compete in Division Two are one of the longest established women’s football sides in Norfolk based in Cawston, their women’s side has reached a final for the 1st time. A trip to the Norfolk coast in the 1st Round away to Division Three side Cromer Ladies scored 8 goals without reply to reach the quarter finals drawn against fellow Division Two side Bohemians Ladies scored another 8 goals beating them 8-2 to set up a semi-final against Stalham Town Ladies again from Division Two a closer game this time around Red Rose Ladies edged the result 2-1 to reach the final. 

  Was for a much welcome change a bright sunny and warm day at the start of May perfect weather for the finals. Plantation Park boasting a large pitch with the clubhouse and bar situated at one end leading into the ground. Pitches behind enabling more than one game to be played at once. A small seated stand along one side opposite the dug out, spectators spread out all around as referee Tracey Clayton led the 2 sides out onto the pitch.

 North Walsham Angels Ladies starting XI – Cyan Fullbrook, Sian Wager (C), Emily Farmer, Megan Champion, Bethany Childs,  Rachel Bussey, Amy Hemp, Sophie Hall, Lauren Yarham, Emma Allsopp & Luci Middleton.
 subs – Imogen Carver, Robyn Steele & Lucy Ellis.

 Red Rose Ladies starting XI – Melissa Williamson, Natasha Willmott, Sophie Tipper, Emily Hill (C), Stacey High, Ellen Hutton, Megan Skinner, Vicki Lubbock, Corinne Bishop, Lauren Hems & Sophie Lubbock.

 subs – Ana Ohde

(roll on roll off substitutes)

It’s Red Rose to get the final underway wearing red shirts, black shorts and socks with North Walsham lined up opposite wearing white shirts, black shorts and black and white hooped socks. Red Rose win a series of throws down the left side of the pitch early on the ball is sent forwards down the left channel with Sophie Lubbock coming across to support the attack wins her side a corner kick, from the left is swept in towards the near post, North Walsham’s Bethany Childs gets control of the ball and brings it out from the box.
Red Rose Ladies, Sophie Tipper
   Wide right for North Walsham, Rachel Bussey is given the ball holding it up, Emma Allsopp runs beyond her towards the area, Bussey puts the ball into her path, Red Rose’s Sophie Tipper tackles on the edge of the area, blocking Allsopp as she looks to shoot. Attacking again up the left side Lauren Yarham brings the ball on the throw is conceded comes to Luci Middleton on that side entering the box, flashes a cross along the Red Rose six yard box is just behind the Allsopp and Bussey making runs in front of goal, Bussey goes after the ball retrieving it sends the cross back in, Red Rose captain, Emily Hill intercepts and gets the ball out of her area.
North Walsham Angels Ladies captain, Sian Wager
 Red Rose have the 1st shot to test Cyan Fullbrook in the North Walsham goal coming from distance off the boot of Sophie Lubbock 25 yards out looping up and down drops short of goal favourably for Fullbrook to claim as she back towards her goal. Red Rose are keeping North Walsham pinned back in their area, Sophie Lubbock looking to take players on in particular is keeping North Walsham captain Sian Wager busy attacking on the right side. North Walsham get hold of the ball Amy Hemp in midfield onto Middleton who plays a smart ball out to the right side releasing Bussey reaching the corner of the Red Rose area pulls the trigger, smashes her shot against Tipper coming to block her the ball spinning away for a corner kick. 
   Red Rose clear the corner out of their area, North Walsham quickly regain possession the Hemp getting on the ball puts it back out to the right for Bussey into the box wide of goal cuts the ball back six yard box from the byline is behind Middleton whose touch takes her away from goal, going after the ball, has one thing on her mind turn and hit the shot on the volley, turns well, sends the shot high off target to the left of goal.  
  GOAL! 15 minutes on the clock and North Walsham get themselves into the lead, attacking in numbers the ball is with Bussey on the right side breaking into the box squares the cross into Middleton in the centre turns the ball goalwards, Red Rose goalkeeper, Melissa Williamson gets down sharply saving, the ball is spilt out to the left side of her goal, Hill tries to launch it clear, but Yarham is coming in gets hold of the ball from the attempted clearance and fires the ball back across the six yard box putting it into the back of the net 1-0. 
Lauren Yarham battling for the ball against Red Rose’s Corinne Bishop
for the ball scorer of the opening goal for North Walsham
  From a free kick on half-way Red Rose look to play in Sophie Lubbock on right side wins a free kick herself fouled by Sian Wager this time. In a dangerous position from a wide position the ball is sent into the box, Stacey High looks to hook the ball on further into the area, Fullbrook has come the bounce of the ball leaves her stranded, but before Megan Skinner can pounce on the loose ball, North Walsham’s defence gets the ball clear. 
  Allsopp with a fantastic forwards pass sends Middleton through to attack the Red Rose box on the right channel closing in on the D goes for goal a low strike aiming for the far corner, Williamson throws herself to the ground getting something on the ball to take it out wide past the far post conceding the corner kick. 
  Sophie Lubbock wins another free kick in a wide right position takes it sending the ball up to the near post to be attacked, her sister Vicki arrives to meet it jumping to head the ball it loops up into the air, Fullbrook is in the right place to see it down into her midriff. Imogen Carver has come on for North Walsham with Emily Farmer off.
  GOAL! North Walsham extend their lead as the game closes in on the half hour mark, with play ebbing and flowing between the two sides North Walsham turn the red Rose defence, the ball lifted out of midfield puts Middleton clear to run in on goal left side of the area reaching the corner meets the ball, lifting her shot up over Williamson and into the back of the net beyond. 2-0.
  Continuing to press North Walsham win a corner on the right the ball is put into the six yard box, Allsopp stoops to head the ball far side of goal trying to put the ball back across, puts it wide off target. Taking a 2-0 lead North Walsham have their tails up are looking for more, Hill calls for her side to remain calm not let their heads drop. Lauren Hems turns well as the ball is rolled into her from Natasha Willmott at the back, has Sophie Lubbock on the move on the right, plays the ball up to her the cross comes in early falling short of Skinner, Megan Champion brings the ball down and puts it up into midfield. A change for Red Rose with Skinner coming off and Ana Ohde coming on up front along side Sophie Lubbock. 
  Middleton is a constant threat leading the line for North Walsham always looking to move into space is put through on the right by Sophie Hall, racing into the box the angle is against her as she goes to put the ball goalwards Williamson gets down pushing the ball away, the ball isn’t cleared far before North Walsham the ball fired back into the area is turned away for the corner. The set-piece fired in low to the near post area Middleton comes to meet it looks to spin at hit the shot Red Rose get the bodies in the way to see it blocked.
Red Rose’s Ana Ohde with North Walsham’s Luci Middleton
  Bussey with the ball high up the pitch gets support from Yarham coming up the pitch giving her the ball as she moves inside she looks to send the ball into the area with Allsopp drifting into the centre around the penalty spot, any touch would divert the ball beyond Williamson in the centre of goal, can’t quite connect and the ball is collected by the goalkeeper. 
  A set-piece late in the 1st half for Red Rose right side just beyond the corner of the area Corinne Bishop is over the ball this time the shot comes in low with venomous pace, Fullbrook diving full stretch to her right pushes the ball away from goal, then is hurt as a Red Rose player collides with her play stopped so she can receive treatment. 

Half-time North Walsham Angels Ladies 2-0 Red Rose Ladies

  A 2-0 lead for North Walsham at the break look to be in control of the match creating chances and getting in behind, whilst defending deep limiting Red Rose’s chances at the other end, Champion and Childs intercepting a good portion of the attempted through balls and crosses. 2-0 though is a often a tricky lead, a chance to regroup during the half-time period can Red Rose get themselves back into the final.
  North Walsham get proceedings underway 2nd half. Red Rose press the ball right from the off 2nd half. Get hold of the ball and win a corner on the right side as Ohde plays the ball out to High moving into space down the wing looking to see the ball out Childs has to concede the corner. Is a great delivery from the corner a little to high for Sophie Lubbock leaping near side 10 yards out, drops for Vicki beyond a firm connection from the header drills it wide of goal. 
   Red Rose have started well 2nd half the ball is put up into Bishop moving out wide holds up with Vicki Lubbock making the run to go beyond her towards the North Walsham area the ball is laid into her path hits the shot early the ball flying towards goal has Fullbrook back peddling rapidly threatening to go over her, dips very late falling straight into her open gloves on the line. 
  Hemp makes a strong run brings the ball forwards is tackled by Hill stepping out of the back line to close her down and win the ball. Middleton has a shot from the edge of the area a low strike doesn’t carry any pace behind it allowing Williamson to get down and hold onto it. Vicki Lubbock is having more say in the middle of the park 2nd half getting onto the ball for Red Rose unleashes a shit 20 yards out a little swerve on it will probably drift wide of the top corner, Fullbrook can’t be sure throws up her gloves to palm the ball down to her right and claim before Hems racing up the left side into the area can latch onto it.
Amy Hemp on the ball for North Walsham
   Change for North Walsham, Robyn Steele coming on for Allsopp. See’s Yarham who had been playing at left back since Farmer had come off moving back into an advanced position. Hall brings the ball down the left for North Walsham plays the ball inside to Middleton coming to the left across the front of the Red Rose area, attempts to play the ball on for Carver in the centre, Willmott makes a timely step up to get her foot on the ball take it away from danger. 
  Champion fouls Vicki Lubbock in the centre of midfield inside the North Walsham half Bishop, bounces it’s way through to Hems on the left side of the North Walsham area plays it back towards Vicki Lubbock central fires the shot in coming in low Fullbrook gets down to put everything behind the save. Skinner returns to the field for Red Rose with Hutton giving way. 
  GOAL! North Walsham extend their lead, a superb solo run and goal from Middleton to score her 2nd of the match the ball rolled into her inside the Red Rose half right side she carries it forwards, takes on the player in front of her getting it past and keeping her feet as she is clipped surging on into the box closing in on goal, an acute angle scores with a clinical finish smashing the ball across the keeper and into the back of the net 3-0.
A Plate Final hat-trick for
Luci Middleton
  GOAL! One goal brings another and it’s Middleton who scores again to complete a cup final (well plate) hat-trick. Red Rose have pushed up attacking the ball is regained by North Walsham the play coming down the left the ball is sent over to the far side of the area, Williamson comes off her line to the edge of the area, Carver just gets there 1st squaring the ball back across to Middleton left of the D who has an empty goal to shoot at, keeps it simply turning the ball on target with the inside of her boot to get mobbed by her team mates  lead 4-0 with a little over 20 minutes left to play. 
   Red Rose are still looking for a goal trying to get players forwards, Hems sets Sophie Lubbock after the ball, Champion on her shoulder at the pair race into the area, Fullbrook comes out of her goal sliding in to claim the ball as Champion gets across Lubbock’s path. Yarham and Carver combine up the left side for North Walsham, the former getting free to cross the ball along the front of the Red Rose area into Middleton she helps it on for Hemp behind her, is unfortunate as she scuffs her shot rolls harmlessly through to Williamson.
  Free kick wide right half way inside the Red Rose half for North Walsham the ball lifted up to the edge of the area right side his headed across, both Carver then Yarham see shots charged down. Few players starting to suffer from cramp. Sophie Lubbock has a shot from the left side receiving the ball from a throw in lifted up to the near post, Fullbrook pulls it down and holds. Late into the game and another chance falls to Sophie Lubbock so unlucky not to pull at least one goal back bursting into the box right side of the D to get onto the through ball, shoots putting the ball across and beating the diving Fullbrook the keeper turns as the ball seemingly takes an age to get there strikes the bottom of the far post and rolls straight back into the keepers gloves. 
  Carver plays a great ball through the middle onto Middleton coming in from the left side the ball bouncing across her goes to strike it on the half volley, angling into the goal from left to right, Williamson gets a vital touch to take it wide of the post for the corner. The corner comes to nothing Red Rose attack Hems is bundled over in a dangerous position in front of the D. Vicki Lubbock over the free kick takes on the shot whipping the ball over the crossbar. 
  The final whistle blows and North Walsham Angels Ladies are the 1st side to win the Norfolk Ladies Plate Final beating Red Rose Ladies 4-0 to bring the 1st piece of silverware home to the club to cap off a promotion winning season. A goal from Lauren Yarham plus a hat-trick from Luci Middleton seeing their army of fans cheering with them in celebration. Looked the stronger side and 2 goals in each half saw them in control of the Plate Final. Red Rose never gave up and were unlucky not to get at least 1 goal back late in the game.
It’s a very shiny plate, North Walsham Angels Ladies celebrate their final win
  Congratulations to North Walsham Angels Ladies on their victory today. Thanks to both teams for their help with the team line-ups today… barely time to draw breath there’s another final about to kick-off.

Match Report – Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies v North Walsham Angels Ladies

Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies v North Walsham Angels Ladies (photo credit Steve Wood)

Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies v North Walsham Angels Ladies (photo credit Steve Wood)

The football action on the Supporting Women’s Football Blog this Sunday features a top of the table clash in Norfolk Women’s Division Two with the top two in the league gunning for  promotion both unbeaten so far this campaign, Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies v North Walsham Angels Ladies. Two sides playing in only their 2nd season each proved to be a real cracker and a fantastic advert for women’s football in the county. Click on the link below to take you to all the match action.

Kirkley & Pakefield FC Ladies v North Walsham Angels Ladies

Match Report – North Walsham Angels Ladies v Sprowston Ladies


 This Sunday’s women’s football action on the Supporting Women’s Football Blog comes from Norfolk. In Division Two a clash between 2nd and 3rd as one of the favourites to win the title, North Walsham Angels Ladies hosted Sprowston Ladies who were on a great run of league form going into this weekends game 4 straight wins which had put them to within a point of their opponents. Click on the link below to take you to the match report.

North Walsham Angels Ladies v Sprowston Ladies