A crowd of around five thousand took to the City Ground, Nottingham, on Sunday afternoon as Carly Davies’ Nottingham Forest welcomed Becky Langley’s high-flying Newcastle United for an FA Women’s National League Northern Premier match.
In a tight game it was to be the Lady Mags who soared back north courtesy of a lone goal win, it arriving just before the hour mark, form Newcastle’s Kacie Elson, she turning home the rebound after Elysia Boddy had hit Emily Batty’s upright on the back of a free-kick from the visitors.
It was a welcome return to Nottingham for both Langley, and her newest assistant, former Forest Head Coach, Andy Cook, the Lady Mags boss, Langley saying prior to the game: “I like going back to Nottingham (courtesy of www.nufc.co.uk)
“I worked there for a few years with the boys’ team and it is my second time there as I was working with their under-18s when they played their FA Youth Cup games at the City Ground.
“I am looking forward to going back. It’s got a nice, old feel to the stadium with the Brian Clough Stand so I am really excited to go back there and we are looking forward to playing in front of the fans there as well.”
The Reds did have their chances, Louanne Worsey seeing an early effort saved by Grace Donnelly in the visiting goal, and Charlotte Greengrass firing wide of goal during a tense, first half; Batty kept the Reds in the hunt early in the second with a couple of fine saves as the visitors also saw an effort come back off the upright from Georgia Gibson’s effort just before the goal, Holly Manders also seeing an effort saved by Donnelly in a tense encounter.
One goal settling it as the Lady Mags sit a point behind leaders Burnley, with a game in hand, whilst Forest remain in fourth place, seven points behind their opponents, following a third league defeat of the season.
Next up for Davies’ Reds, a home game with Sporting Khalsa in the Women’s FA Cup this coming Sunday (26 November) at Grange Park, before a return to league action at the start of December, and a trip to Stoke City.
NOTTINGHAM FOREST – Emily Batty, Lyndsey Harkin, Natalie Johnson, Sophie Domingo, Holly Manders, Louanne Worsey, Mollie Green, Freya Thomas, Becky Anderson, Charlotte Greengrass, Abigail Cowie (subs – Aja Aguirre, Olivia Cook, Mai Moncaster, Chloe Dixon, Ella Haughey)
It was Nottinghamshire FA County Cup weekend lower down the women’s football pyramid as the county’s sides played out the quarter-finals.
Andi Bell’s Mansfield Town side top-scored to reach this seasons’ semis, eventually easing past visiting Radcliffe Olympic 7-1, although there was only one goal in a tense, first half.
Grace Shipman would score twice for the hosts, once in each half, Chrystal Smiley also adding a brace for added measure; the home rout was completed when further goals were added by Martha Roper, Ashleigh Evans, and Millie Edwards.
MANSFIELD TOWN – Amy Price, Maia Taylor, Martha Roper, Chloe Hutsby, Monica Bowley, Eve Shaw, Grace Shipman, Alaya Price, Erin James, Libby Bartlett, Olivia Standeven (subs – Chrystal Smiley, Mathilda Evans, Mollie Edwards, Ashleigh Evans, Georgina Beckwith)
Joining them in semis will be Basford United, as they edged a five-goal thriller at home to a Retford side who led early in the first half, before being pegged by Izzy Sullivan, and Maisie Plumb efforts in the opening half hour.
The visitors equalised within five minutes of the restart, but Sullivan’s second, on the hour, saw the hosts progress with a narrow, 3-2 win.
BASFORD UNITED – Kaci Riley, Keeley Sanderson, Maisie Plumb, Phoebe Roe, Chloe Barkes, Zoe Meyrick, Kayleigh Downes, Libbi Mancienne, Georgia Gladwin, Izzy Sullivan, Laura Porritt (subs – Devonn Cousins, Alana Crawford, Keeley Butler, Anna Butcher, Katelyn McFarlane)
Meanwhile, with the Mansfield Town Development versus Arnold Eagles Flyers game postponed, the other quarter-final would see Neil Matthews’ Eagles Firsts host Keyworth United, and see some nine goals netted, seven in favour of the home side.
Natasha Leach, who else, led the way for the Eagles with another treble, whilst Holly Gibson also bagged three in what was a comfortable, 7-2 home win, Hannah Daniel with the other goal as the hosts soared into the semi-finals.
In the one game played in the East Midlands Women’s, Nottingham Trent University eased to a 5-0 home win over Beaumont Park in Division One Central to move within two of leaders Arnold Eagles, having played a game more.
Also, there was but one game played in the Notts Girls & Ladies League Seniors One, Newark Town romping to a 12-0 home win over visiting Teversal to open a four point gap atop of the division.
Although they’ve played more than three sides directly beneath them, Town eased to victory as Sophie Packer helped herself to five goals, substitute Connie Forman added a hat-trick and Jessica Hogg with a brace to keep ahead of the pack.
Not to be done there, further goals were added by the hosts through solo efforts by Tia McRae and Jessica Parker in a comfortable afternoon for the hosts.
*Article provided by Peter Mann (Senior Correspondent).
*Main image @NFFCWomen Forest were beaten by Newcastle in front of over 5,000 at the City Ground.