North West Women's Regional League Divison One South match

Sunday, 25 September 2016


See report, below...


Report courtesy of Phil Taylor.

The Ladies took the trip to Ellesmere Port to face a team showing a number of changes from last season. Altrincham lined up in a 4-4-2 formation. Heather, Kye, Bliss and Louise made up the back four. Megan, Anna, Laura Dodds and Georgia were the midfield four. Kate operated up front in tandem with Laura Kelly. Substitutes were Jess, Gail and Jade.

On a sunny day, Ellesmere Port kicked off the game, which was initially a little “bitty”, with both sides guilty of a number of misplaced passes. The first real opportunity was created on four minutes when the hosts moved the ball down the left. The subsequent shot however went over the bar.

Altrincham took the lead on eight minutes, Kate provided an excellent ball to Megan whose accurate cross was met firmly by the head of Georgia. The ball seemed to be travelling toward the keeper but she was unable to prevent it crossing the line.

Sadly though. the lead was only to last four minutes. A long diagonal ball from right to left cleared the midfield and centre backs. Despite Heather’s desperate attempts to intercept it, the ball bounced into the path of the Ellesmere Port striker who lifted it into the corner of the net despite the best efforts of Bliss.

Alty immediately set about trying to restore their advantage, an adroit ball lifted into the area by Laura Dodds being collected by the Port keeper just before Laura Kelly could get a touch on it.

Immediately afterwards, Heather was forced into action scooting across to cover admirably after another long ball out of the sun had evaded the centre backs.

Good link up play down the left on the quarter hour between Georgia and Kye allowed the latter to deliver a testing cross into the area which was cleared for a corner.

The visitors were convinced that they had regained the lead on seventeen minutes. A corner was cleared by Ellesmere Port but recycled well by Alty, finding its way back to Kye on the right hand touchline. Her cross was touched home by Laura Kelly but, controversially, referee Mr Duncalf adjudged her to be offside and the goal was chalked off.

It was the hosts, though, who were to claim the lead on twenty minutes. A long ball, again coming out of the sun, was headed by Bliss but ricocheted off Louise into the path of the home striker who strode forward before clinically slotting the ball past Lizzie.

Altrincham once again went in search of what would now be an equaliser whilst Ellesmere Port seemed happy to close up shop for a while. Bliss fed Laura Kelly whose attempted through ball was well gathered by the keeper to thwart Kate.

An Altrincham corner on twenty-seven minutes found Georgia on the edge of the box but her shot was well gathered. Next, another Alty corner was cleared as far as Anna but her first time shot went well over the bar. Ellesmere Port, whilst primarily on the defensive, were still looking to get forward and on thirty-eight minutes Lizzie had to bravely dive full length to catch a cross driven across the area.

Alty continued to press the home defence who remained resolute restricting any attempts at goal to shots from distance, none of which particularly troubled the keeper.

Half Time was reached with the score Ellesmere Port Town Ladies 2 Altrincham FC Ladies 1.

Keith and the Management Team were less content than at any previous game this season. The Alty players had played into the hands of the hosts, conceding two disappointing goals and with touch and passing, for some reason, patchy at best.

It was clear that the hosts were inclined to shut up shop and try to catch Alty on the break and, also, that attempts to progress through the centre had not worked. Passing the ball and getting around the side of Ellesmere Port was identified as the way to go and the players returned to the pitch with those instructions.


Alty kicked off the second half and looked to follow the instructions they had been given.

On fifty minutes, Kye and Georgia, who linked up well all day, did so again, Kye’s cross going disappointingly behind. Georgia showed her ability, less than a minute later, with a strong run down the left. Her cross in toward Laura Kelly, however, was cut out. Anna was the next Alty player to push on. Her powerful run and shot earning a corner which, sadly, came to nothing

At this point, Jess replaced the industrious Laura Kelly. It seemed to be all Altrincham at this stage with further efforts from Kye and Jess unsuccessful.

On the hour, though, there was an excellent opportunity for the hosts to extend their lead. Lizzie played the ball out to Kye but, before she could move it on, she was robbed of possession. The ball was crossed to an unmarked player inside the six-yard box who. inexplicably, spooned her shot high over the bar.

On sixty-four minutes Louise and Megan were replaced by Gail and Kate, with Altrincham going to a back three and releasing more resources to go in search of an equaliser. Despite much huffing and puffing and almost a monopoly of possession, Altrincham were unable to puncture the Ellesmere Port defence and suffered their first defeat of the season going down 2-1.

It had not been a vintage Alty performance, a number of inaccurate passes and poor decisions combined with obdurate defending by Ellesmere Port had closed down one route to goal and it had proved impossible to work a way around this. As always commitment and determination were shown by every player but, on this particular occasion, the Manager's Player of the Match accolade went to Kye.

Thanks again are due to our loyal band of travelling supporters, again numbering around twenty, who encouraged the players from first whistle to last.

Next up for the Ladies is a home fixture this coming Sunday when we take on FC United of Manchester in a League fixture. Kick-off is scheduled for 2pm.