Good (and needed) start to the new year

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Good (and needed) start to the new year

Postby Another Northern Soul » 10 Jan 2017, 16:44

Aimee Routledge, Jodie Hunter, Catherine Hamill, Megan Maxted, Eden Pedersen, Shannon Beal, Monika Estere, Helen Wagstaff, Arianne Parnham, Demi Pringle, Harriet Jakeman, Veatriki Sarri, Simona Petkova, Carly Hoyle, Bethan Davies

Mossley Hill Ladies FC V Leeds Ladies FC 8th January 2017

Our first game back was against a side who had been improving before the Christmas break so we were going to be paying them the up most respect. After mixed fortunes in 2016 Leeds were looking forward to continuing this campaign with a renewed vigour, energy and attitude.

We were greeted in Liverpool with dull day and an unforgiving pitch but we did welcome the return of Helen Wagstaff who had concluded work in the USA and with Aimee Routledge making her first team league debut in goal, this was new line up for the New Year.

There was not a lot to write home about in the opening exchanges, however Leeds did manage a chance with a Harriet Jakeman shot from distance which was wide and high. Leeds were struggling to take command of the game and after a break from Mossley Hill on 19 minutes Leeds found themselves behind. A shot from the edge of the box looped over the top of Routledge and dropped into the back of the net. Mossley Hill 1 Leeds Ladies 0

Leeds are nothing if not resilient and 6 minutes later they drew level. Arianne Parnham crossed a ball from the right which fell to Monika Estere, who’s shot rebounded from the Mossley keeper’ and into the path of Harriet Jakeman who made no mistake and unleashed a fierce shot which hit the back of the net. Mossley Hill 1 Leeds Ladies 1

Leeds kept up their endeavour to get forward and just after the half hour mark a quality pass from Jakeman played in Arianne Parnham. Her cross was inch perfect to the feet of Demi Pringle who forced a very good save from the Mossley keeper’. As is typical with all things Leeds the pathway to half time was not a smooth one and Leeds went into the break behind again. Routledge half cleared a ball which fell to a Mossley forward and she hit home to take the lead. Half time Mossley Hill 2 Leeds Ladies 1

The girls came out from the break knowing that they could and probably should have done better. Head coach Lewis Atkinson must have had some harsh words as the intent showed in the second half was clear when 3 minutes in Leeds had equalised. The impressive Demi Pringle had a very good shot saved by the keeper’ only for substitute Simona Petkova to net the rebound. Mossley Hill 2 Leeds Ladies 2

Leeds’ midfield had this game finally under control. Jakeman and Waggi were in command and worked well with Petkova and Sarri who littered the box with shot after shot which the Mossley keeper’ dealt with superbly. On 60 minutes Leeds added to their lead with a stunning headed goal from Veatriki Sarri. A pitch perfect cross from Jakeman was the assist. Mossley Hill 2 Leeds Ladies 3

Such was Leeds’ attacking dominance they also had a penalty appeal turned down. Coach Lewis Atkinson was given his marching orders for his remonstrations and Director of football Lee Townend took charge for the remainder of the game. As I say, Leeds are resilient and they did not let this affect their game as they continued to pile forward. Sarri had multiple shots off target until finally hitting the back of the net after connecting with a Parnham cross which she coolly slotted into the goal. Mossley Hill 2 Leeds Ladies 4

The proverbial nail in the Mossley coffin came in injury time when Jakeman latched onto a half clearance and hammered the underside of the bar and across the line making the full time score Mossley Hill 2 Leeds Ladies 5

This was definitely a tale of two halves. Leeds looked a little unsettled and nervy in the first half which was overturned in the second to display their class and ability. The supporters disagreed with the coaches on the player of the match award. The supporters debated over many players including Jakeman for obvious reasons, Pedersen and Maxted who were their usual solid selves and Routledge who had a massive word with herself and put on a world class second half display. Ultimately they plumped for Helen Wagstaff who’s return has come at a timely moment and showed her superior class with her outstanding passing, defence and play making ability. Coaches player of the match went to Arianne Parnham. A youngster with a very bright future. She works hard for her team mates, gets on the score sheet with sublime goals and makes many, many chances for the forwards. Incidentally Aimee Routledge took opposition player of the match so clearly the decision in who deserved it was a tough one.

Next up is an away day to the seaside with a visit to Blackpool.
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