Second place, and with a game in hand on leaders, and rivals, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Andy Cook’s Nottingham Forest battled to a 3-1 home win over second bottom, Brighouse Town, at the weekend.
It was the Reds’ third home win in succession, scoring ten, and conceding three, and their seventh win in nine games this season, and those goals, they’re being shared about.
Cook named the same starting eleven that saw off East Midlands rivals, Derby County, last time out, Yasmin Mosby returning to the squad and taking her place on the bench following injury, but it was to be the visitors who’d take a shock lead, early in the first half.
Forest though, they levelled proceedings as Niamh Reynolds grabbed her second of the season on the half hour; they could have led at the break as well, Mai Moncaster however saw her effort disallowed for offside.
Early in the second period, summer signing, Sophie Domingo, was proving a nuisance to the visitors, whilst Reds captain, Lyndsey Harkin, was seen to try her luck from distance, with what was deemed ‘an audacious effort from range,’ only for the Brighouse ‘keeper to tip the shot round the post.
Moncaster, who’d had a goal disallowed late in the first, would see consecutive efforts early in the second fly over the opposing bar, whilst Charlotte Greengrass would see a header come back off the bar – the visiting goal leading something of a charmed life.
Following a triple substitution just after the hour, Forest took the lead following a sequence involving one of those, Gianna Mitchell, who saw her initial effort cleared off the line, before winning back the loose ball, only to be brought down for a penalty, Charlotte Steggles stepping up to dispatch the resulting spot-kick.
In the latter stages, another of the home subs, Naomi Powell, would be seen to cause havoc before Hayley James added a late third to wrap up a 3-1 win, and notch her first of the season.
Next for Cook’s high-flying Reds, a trip to the north-east, as they head to their Head Coach’s native Teesside in the FA Women’s National League Cup (30 October), and Norton & Stockton Ancients, before returning to league action the following, away to Stoke City (6 November).
NOTTINGHAM FOREST – Emily Batty, Lyndsey Harkin, Georgia Hewitt, Charlotte Steggles (Olivia Cook, 82), Sophie Domingo (Naomi Powell, 62), Mai Moncaster, Amy West, Niamh Reynolds (Gianna Mitchell, 62), Becky Anderson (Arryana Daniels, 86), Hayley James, Charlotte Greengrrass (Yasmin Mosby, 62)
Other Nottinghamshire clubs were on cup duty, as the third qualifying round of the Vitality Women’s FA Cup with only Nottingham Trent University still in the hat, as their game, away to Oughtibridge War Memorial, was postponed.
The winners of that rearranged tie, in the First Round Proper, will host the afore-mentioned National League North high-fliers, Nottingham Forest; elsewhere in the competition there was heavy defeats on the road for Notts clubs Sherwood, and Arnold Eagles.
Sherwood, they crashed to an eight-goal defeat when at Crewe Alexandra, whilst Arnold were soundly beaten, conceding seven, at Solihull Moors.
Both Mansfield Town, and Basford United, scored, in their respective cup ties, but were ultimately beaten also, the former losing 3-1 away to Peterborough United, Ellie Marshall netting, and the latter, they were edged 2-1 at home to Sedgley & Gornal, Amber Bilous with the goal.
Meanwhile, in the Nottinghamshire Girls & Ladies League Seniors One, Mansfield Town Development were on Senior League Cup duty, winning 6-3 at home to Arnold Eagles Flyers, whilst the bottom two both picked up their first victories of the season.
Nottingham Trent University won 3-0 at home to Sports Gateway Hucknall, goals coming from Alice Summers, Lana Wearne, and Bethan Gammon, and Radcliffe Olympic won 4-2 at home to Keyworth United – Taylor Johnson scored twice for hosts alongside goals from Shannon Franklin and Katie Rogers, whilst Jenna Stocks and substitute Lily Chapman replied.
*Article provided by Peter Mann (Senior Correspondent).
*Main image @NFFCWomen Steggles scores from the spot v Brighouse.