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FC’s Women reach Argyle (League) Cup Semi Final after convincing victory in Bootle

FC’s Women reach Argyle (League) Cup Semi Final after convincing victory in Bootle

After reaching the Manchester Cup Final defeating West Didsbury & Chorlton 3-0 last weekend, this week, United stunned rivals Merseyrail Bootle, winning by the same score line to reach the Argyle League Cup Semi Final, keeping their treble hopes well and truly on track.

Merseyrail pipped FC to last season’s title and are doing well in the division above this campaign; but the red’s were more than a match this time around scoring two late on in the first half courtesy of Jess McCarrick and Jess Battle and sealing victory with a second half strike from Captain Kirsty Chambers.

FC kicked off and after a cagey, even opening, Kaisha Sohl drove in a speculative effort from 30 yards which Chloe Ainsworth held comfortably in the United goal. The red’s responded in kind as Chelsea Patient clipped a ball down the right for McCarrick to race onto and slide a pass into the six yard area for Jess Muirhead to clear over her own bar with Battle lurking had the defender missed her queue.

Nine minutes in and the hosts won a corner that was headed goalwards and well caught under pressure by Ainsworth launching United forward. Chambers beat the offside trap and surged into the area cutting the ball back towards Battle but Shaunie Kennedy did well to cut out the cross.

The half ebbed and flowed with Merseyrail winning a series of set plays and looking the more likely to break the deadlock as the half hour mark came and went. The last third of the first half witnessed FC turning the tide as Rebecca Foster went close from 20 yards and on 39 minutes it was United who deservedly took the lead. Merseyrail left acres of space down the FC right that was decisively exploited by a superb through ball from Fran Sullivan. McCarrick raced onto the pass unopposed and as Kennedy left her line, the FC No17 calmly stroked the ball under her and into the back of the net.

The Red’s, now in the ascendancy swarmed forward with Patient lifting the ball into the last third proving the catalyst for an intricate passage of play resulting in a well worked second goal. Foster slid the ball into the area where Sullivan helped it on to Chambers who committed the keeper and squared a ball into the six yard box where Battle was on hand to stun the hosts and fire home unopposed from close range on 41 minutes.

The second half saw United contain the Merseyrail threat to really good effect for large passages of play and as the hosts increasingly looked to press for a way back into the game they fell for the classic football counter punch as the reds scored the final and decisive third goal of the afternoon. Following a Merseyrail corner, Fran Davies cleared the lines in a controlled way playing the ball into midfield where Foster played a defence splitting pass into the path of Chambers. The Captain kept her cool to loft the ball over the advancing Kennedy on 78 minutes sparking early expectations that a semi final place was well within their grasp.

So it proved but not without Merseyrail putting in a late rally that saw them have the ball in FC’s net only to be ruled out for offside. After 5 additional minutes the ref final called time and all connected with FC United can rightly be proud of a superb effort by our Women’s Team.

Next weekend, the Women return to league action with a trip to Altrincham that starts a crucial run of games that could see them take a giant stride toward the title? Get yourself to that football ground and help the team prevail in a tricky fixture; with Altrincham being the only club to take league points off the reds so far this season.

Report by Rob Fullen
FC Player of the game: Jess McCarrick – difficult to separate any one player from the rest after such a good team performance but Jess did particularly well in a more advanced right sided role scoring the game’s crucial opener. Special mention for Chelsea Patient who with little recent game time, played a pivotal defensive role.

Teams 25th February 2018: Attendance: 103

FC United of Manchester: 3 (2)
1. Chloe Ainsworth
2. Fran Davies
3. Abbie Carrington
5. Chelsea Patient
17. Jess McCarrick (Goal 39 mins)
4. Olivia Greenhalgh
18. Cara Fields
7. Fran Sullivan
8. Rebecca Foster
11. Kirsty Chambers (Capt) (Goal 78 mins)
9. Jess Battle (Goal 41 mins)
6. Amy Vyas
10. Nicole Hatcliffe (for No18 68 mins)
12. Fliss Winters (for No17 87 mins)
13. Gemma Jackson (GK)
14. Jennifer Lomax (for No 9 83 mins)

Merseyrail Bootle LFC: 0 (0)
1. Shaunie Kennedy
12. Jade Collins
3. Lauren Williams (cautioned 45+3 mins)
4. Gemma Lancaster (Capt)
5. Kaisha Sohl
6. Jess Muirhead
17. Alice Whorton
14. Tess Littler
9. Alicia Hardacre
16. Sophie Perry
15. Rachel Atherton
8. Jess Hindley (for No17 59 mins)
10. Oleta La Cruz
11. Robyn Taylor
18. Sheree Thompson
19. Holly Parkinson (for No12 79 mins)

Referee: Anthony Hardwick
Asst Referee: James Milburn
Asst Referee: Frances Sibley
Venue: New Bucks Park, Vesty Road, Bootle, Merseyside L30 1NY
Official FC photography by Mark Lee & Samantha Coates
Film Footage & Historical Stats from Neil Boo
Social Media Updates from Mikey Partington
FCUM Radio: Ben Hughes & Paul Hinson

Match Stats by Paul Hinson from: www.liveteamstats.com
FC United stats first column:
Goals: 3.............0
Shots on target: 4.............6
Shots off target: 4.............7
Corners: 7.............8
Completed Passes: 263........260
Possession: 56%.......44%

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First Posted ~ 13:34 Mon 26 Feb 2018
News ID ~ 7797
Last Updated ~ 13:08 Sat 3 Mar 2018