“Good day at the office for Forest Ladies”
Sunday 24 April:
1st Team FAWPL- Blackburn Rovers LFC 0:0 Nottingham Forest LFC
Notts FA Shield Junior Girls Finals:
Under 13s – NFLFC 2:1 West Bridgford Colts Red
Under 14s- NFLFC 6:0 Gedling Southbank
Under 15s – Holy Spirit Sports Club 1:2 NFLFC
Under 16s – Gedling Southbank 1:2 NFLFC
Under 18s – Notts County 0:3 NFLFC
Forest Ladies 1st team had to pick themselves up after 3 back to back defeats in the FA Women’s Premier League at Newcastle away (1:0) and home to Bradford (0:2) and an away loss to Sporting Albion (2:0) that has cost them all chances of promotion to the Women’s Super League. A combination of key player absence, injuries, questionable officiating and ultimately tired and under par team performances - leaves Forest reflecting on what could have been. That said, the club has rallied on spirit and endeavour that enabled a calibre performance on Sunday which then decimated Blackburn’s hopes of WSL dreams.
No foul given – as Bradford climb on Andi Bell
Through on Goal but McIntosh is fouled vs Bradford – no foul given
Bell vs Cara Bickett of Blackburn
Head Coach, Steve Stennett worked with his players and tweaked a formation to play to strengths which closed down Blackburn’s attacking play. Forest had some creative play from the back, midfield and to the forward line with all the team linking well. Ejupi and Howard were creatively strong and adept with some great first touches to gift some through balls to McKechnie, Bell and McIntosh. Bell again was player marked but dominated on the pace front to break clear on several occasions – unfortunately to deliver crosses to an empty 6 yard box for Blackburn’s keeper to collect.
Howard battles on the ball
Blackburn played some good football, especially on their left side- but play was broken down with good reading skills from Forest’s Cameron and Finley. Blackburn hit the woodwork twice and were thwarted by a couple of good saves from Vanessa Kinnerley, but this was as close as they could get as other forward play was cut out with some key challenges, one notably from Kirsty Richardson with a professional sliding tackle that drew applause from the support.
Weston closes down for Forest
Forest had equal chances from all areas but failed to find the net and the 0:0 score line was a fair reflection of a great display of football from both sides.
Elsewhere for Forest Ladies though the Club took the silverware En Masse at the Nottinghamshire FA Shield Finals, played at Hucknall Rolls Royce throughout the day on Sunday.
All representative Forest Ladies teams for the Under 113s, 14s, 15s, 16s and Under 18s won their respective games giving the club a clean sweep for their age groups. All games were a great advert for junior girl’s football and some were tightly fought with games into extra time as the competitive elements inspired delight for the crowds.
Steve Stennett commented on his 1st Team game: “What a difference a week makes - as we move into the final few games of the season I could not have asked for more from the players today in a tough game against a solid, well organised Blackburn team. The players from start to finish were excellent displaying a positive and confident approach to the game where they produced a solid performance. I thought their attitude and application was outstanding and they thoroughly deserved the hard fought point.”
Club Chairperson, PJ Andrews said: “Days like this don’t come around very often. We have all been collectively and bitterly disappointed that we could not deliver on the hopes of a WSL opportunity, but we all recognize that with the resources we have had, we have still achieved on many levels. And there is still so much to play for – where pride and professionalism is concerned – plus a County Cup Final on the 4th of May. The credit this weekend though, has to go to our junior teams in the Notts FA shield finals. Whilst we always applaud the efforts – there is no denying anyone this moment of glory for all those involved in winning their finals. The managers, coaches and players are due the credit they deserve. Nottingham has a great depth of junior talent and the finals on Sunday were a testament to all teams involved – but this is a special feeling for everyone at NFLFC.”
1st Team Forest Line-Up: Kinnerley, Richardson, Cameron, Greenan, Kennaugh (c),Weston, McKechnie, Ejupi, , Bell, Howard, McIntosh
Subs: Allen, Gladwin, Kemp, Voce
Forest’s next game is at home for their last Sunday game – vs Stoke City Ladies FC – Kick Off 2pm at Basford United’s Ground – Greenwich Avenue, Basford NG6 0LD. Entrance £3, Programme £1.50 – Under 16s free!