FC United Women kept up their 100% start to the league season with an outstanding performance to beat Mossley Hill Ladies 3-0. Anyone who saw last season’s corresponding fixture, which resulted in a narrow 1-0 win for the Reds, would probably expect that 90 minutes’ committed effort from the whole squad would be needed in order to secure a result … and that’s exactly what we got!
It was a strike by Emily Marsh almost from out of the blue that gave FC a vital early advantage and put the home side on the back foot early on. The lead was doubled after Aimee O’Keeffe was brought down in the area by Mossley Hill’s keeper Danielle Camp resulting in a penalty kick converted by Kirsty Chambers. The win was virtually sealed eleven minutes into the second half when Jordon Bailey pounced on a moment of defensive hesitancy to go past the keeper and score in the unguarded net.
The Reds were quickly on the attack and took the lead just three minutes in as Emily Marsh strode forward with the ball and, with the Mossley Hill defence standing off, let fly from well over thirty yards. Daniellle Camp, Mossley Hill’s keeper and captain, appeared to be the only one to have seen the danger but her urgings to close down the space fell on deaf ears and, despite getting a hand to the shot, she was unable to stop it heading into the top corner.
The home side looked for an early reply and FC keeper Chloe Ainsworth had to smother a shot from Amy Fisher and soon afterwards Fran Davies was on the spot to head clear as a corner kick threatened to curl directly into the net.
It proved crucial therefore that the Reds were able to knock their hosts back onto the ropes as Aimee O’Keeffe got clear into the area and, in attempting to go round the keeper, was brought down by Camp’s outstretched leg with the referee pointing immediately to the spot. Kirsty Chambers stepped up and confidently despatched the kick past her opposing captain to make it 2-0 on 17 minutes.
FC United looked to increase the lead further with Jordon Bailey sending a ball out to Aimee O’Keeffe who cut into the left side of the area for an angled shot which was blocked by Camp, who then recovered well to save again from Chambers following in on the rebound.
There was a chance for Mossley Hill to reduce the deficit as Jade Graham appeared to get onto a loose ball almost unnoticed. Fortunately Ainsworth was smartly off her line to smother the danger.
Emily Marsh then went for a repeat of her earlier opener with another effort from 30 yards or so, this time hitting the crossbar.
The Reds did however further increase the lead eleven minutes into the second half as Jordon Bailey’s pace in pursuit of a ball down the right took Camp and team-mate Catherine King by surprise. FC’s number 10 nipped in and was able to go round the keeper to score with a tight angled shot into the empty net.
There was more work for Camp as she had to be alert to stop O’Keeffe scoring with a flick off the outside of her right foot. Moments later the keeper had to dive to her left to keep out a volley from Yvette Loukes.
Maxine Smith then took a pass in her stride and teed up a volley but a deflection off a defender took the pace off the shot and made it a comfortable save for Camp. Mossley Hill left back King was then shown a yellow card for pulling back Ellie Whittle – only minutes into her FC United debut off the bench – as the Reds continued to run the opposing defence ragged.
There was no let up from FC. Kate O’Gara tried her luck from distance but found the keeper comfortably behind the ball. FC’s other sub Robyn Hartley went closer with a shot across goal after being put through on the left by Chambers.
Late on, Chloe Ainsworth saved a long range effort from Graham but it appeared little more than token resistance as FC came away with a well earned three points from a potentially difficult fixture.
Report by Phil Bradbury
FC Player of the game: Yvette Loukes – kept the opposition defence busy with a series of threatening runs down the wing and also put in several good midfield tackles.
Teams 3rd November 2019: Attendance: 55
Mossley Hill Ladies: 0 (0)
1. Danielle Camp (Capt)
2. Amy Fisher
3. Catherine King (Yellow card, 73 minutes)
4. Emma Valentine
5. Danielle Loughlin
15. Katie Bennett
12. Samantha Cawley
8. Francesca Simon
9. Jade Graham
10. Rachel Davison
11. Aimee Wood
7. Eleanor Doyle (For No10, 35 minutes)
16. Olivia Ellinson (for No15, 65 minutes)
18. Amy Garratt (for No8, 85 minutes)
FC United of Manchester Women: 3 (2)
1. Chloe Ainsworth
2. Fran Davies
3. Emily Marsh (Goal 3 minutes)
5. Chelsea Patient
17. Jess McCarrick
20. Kate O’Gara
11. Kirsty Chambers (Capt) (Goal-penalty 17 minutes)
14. Yvette Loukes
8. Maxine Smith
15. Aimee O’Keeffe
10. Jordon Bailey (Goal 56 minutes)
16. Robyn Hartley (for No15, 63 minutes)
12. Ellie Whittle (for No17, 68 minutes)
Referee: S Lawrenson
Venue: Mossley Hill Athletics Club
Official FC photography: Mark Lee
Film Footage from Neil Boothman
FC United stats first column:
Shots on target: 10...........3
Shots off target: 12..........4