ESFA Internationals, featured, Match Reports

Bob Docherty Cup match report: England v Northern Ireland

England Under 15 Schoolgirls started their Bob Docherty campaign in style, beating Northern Ireland 4-0 at Cochrane Park in Newcastle. An Emily Cassap brace, along with goals from Mia Endacott and Niamh Boothroyd saw England to a comfortable win.

England started the game the stronger of the two sides, with a half-chance falling to Emily Cadell within the first ten minutes. Some smart defending from Ireland would see them clear the danger, but England had made an encouraging start to the game. Moments later the England pressure paid off, as Endacott set off on a winding run, she found Cassap in a yard of space. Cassap took a touch before firing into the top corner from long range and England’s early pressure had paid off.

England would continue to dominate the possession as they took control of the game. After 25 minutes a corner was flashed into the box with only a touch needed to send the ball goalward. However, it evaded everyone, and Northern Ireland remained just one goal behind.

As half time approached, England broke forward once again through Endacott who was finding space out wide. As she whipped a cross in, the ball dipped and nearly found its way into the back of the net, only for it to rattle the woodwork and the deficit remained at one goal.

England went into the half-time break a goal ahead and would question how they didn’t lead by more. The second half started as the first one finished, with England pushing to double their lead. Some clever play from Isobel Young down the left looked to have created an opening for the hosts, only for her cross to flash wide of the post.

England wouldn’t have it all their own way though, as Macey Conway found herself one on one with Ashleigh Ridsdel-Harrison in the England goal. However, her tame effort was easily saved by the England stopper. Ten minutes into the second half, England found their second as Taya Pomfret found Endacott in the box. Endacott kept her composure and rounded the goalkeeper before firing home to double the England lead.

It wouldn’t take long for England to make it three. An Amelia Freeman cross was only half cleared by the defence. The ball fell to Cassap on the edge of the area, who’s left footed effort found the back of the net for her second of the afternoon.

With 20 minutes left to play, neither side managed to fashion any chances, with England happy to control the ball. As the game entered its closing stages, England turned the screw once more. This time Cassap turned provider and found Boothroyd outside of the area. Her right footed effort looped over the Northern Ireland stopper and found the back of the net.

It was England’s fourth of the afternoon and it rounded off a brilliant performance in their Bob Docherty Cup opener.

Photo credits: 353 Photography

ESFA Internationals, featured, Match Reports, Uncategorized

Centenary Shield Match Report: England v Republic of Ireland

England Under 18 Schoolboys had to settle for a point as they played out a 1-1 draw with the Republic of Ireland at the Silverlake Stadium. In what was a real game of two halves, England could count themselves unlucky to not have taken all three points, after a flurry of chances late on in the game.

Ireland started the stronger of the two sides and had the first chance of the game, after Niko Nenonen-Millar gave possession away as he tried to play the ball back to Harvey Keogh. Lennon Gill looked to take advantage; his shot that followed forced a smart save from Keogh in the England goal. The early Irish pressure continued as Charlie O’Brien’s header flashed narrowly over the crossbar.

England’s first chance came after 20 minutes. After a corner was whipped in, Ashton Fox rose higher than anyone else, only to see his header fizz just past the far post. The chance didn’t shift the momentum England’s way, as another chance fell Irelands way. After a corner was only half cleared, the ball fell kindly to Tadhg Walsh, who’s low effort went wide of the upright and the scores remained level.

As the clock ticked towards half time, England would be the happier of the two sides, should the game remain goalless. However, a minute into added time, a long ball found Gill once again. Following some neat footwork, the striker created an opening. His left footed drive beat Keogh to give Ireland a well-deserved the lead going into the break.

Both teams opted to make changes at the break, with England looking to Bailey Hall to add some firepower upfront. The second half started entirely differently to the first, with England dominating possession and Jack Bates caused Ireland a few problems from set pieces.

As the hour mark approached, England made their second change of the evening as Sam Johnson, who was only called up to the England squad last night, came on in place of Nenonen-Millar. Johnson’s impact was almost instant as he played a perfectly weighted through ball to Hall. Hall kept his cool as he found himself one on one with Reece Byrne in the Ireland goal, his left footed effort found the bottom corner and the hosts were level.

Ireland looked to hit back, as Jack Beerling gave the ball away inside his own half, Ireland played the ball into Michael Raggett. His powerful effort stung the palms of Keogh, who did well to keep the score at 1-1.

As the game entered its last 15 minutes, both sides seemed to tire as they went in search of a winner. A low ball into the box looked to fall into the path of Alfie Dean, but the forward couldn’t connect with the ball and the chance went begging. Seconds later Hall found himself with his back to goal, his resulting scuffed effort didn’t trouble Byrne in between the Irish sticks.

England would continue to pile on the pressure as Jeevan Purewal whipped a ball into the box, but again it didn’t find a white shirt. The hosts wouldn’t have it all their own way though as Gill headed a corner narrowly over the crossbar from a corner. With seconds remaining a goalmouth scramble saw the ball drop to Purewal, who’s half volley was cleared off of the line. It would prove to be the last chance of the game and the points were shared.

Watch the match highlights here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Itgs_jO8g8c

England are back in action on Thursday 14th April when they travel to Wales for their final inspiresport Centenary Shield fixture this season.

Photo credits: 353 Photography