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FC’s Women overcome Altrincham 4-1 in a tricky mid-weeker

FC’s Women overcome Altrincham 4-1 in a tricky mid-weeker

Just two days ahead of the Manchester Women’s Cup Final, FC’s Women followed up Sunday’s 9-2 win at Crewe with a 4-1 Victory away at Altrincham on a cold Wednesday evening. Leading 1-0 at the break, courtesy of a Chelsea Flanagan strike, Altrincham pressed hard from the restart and Jess Hartopp brought the hosts level just passed the hour. United responded well; with goals from Jess Battle, Cara Fields and a late Flanagan penalty to secure all 3 points.

The hosts got the game underway and United pressed well from the start, Captain Kirsty Chambers smashing a shot over the bar early on. The home side defended resolutely holding a high line and frustratingly catching FC off side more often than not until the breakthrough mid way through the half. Olivia Greenhalgh played into the feet of Battle who flicked a clever pass to split the home defence finding Flanagan onside to let fly from the D; her shot beating the dive of Paula Alarcon-Conde on 23 minutes.

Just passed the half hour and Flanagan linked well with Battle who was denied by quick and brave keeping. Although Altrincham continued to defend very well and frustrate United’s dominance they offered little going forward in the first 45 minutes until an ex FC’er and loyal servant Beth Hayes seized on a loose ball 30 yards from Gemma Jackson’s goal and her cultured, lofted shot went narrowly wide. In a final flourish before the break a fierce cross from Chambers was fumbled by the keeper who atoned by diving on the loose ball trapping it against the post on the goal line – no technology present to prove otherwise.

After the break it was clear that Altrincham sensed they were in with a chance and coupled their resolute defending with a higher and more persistent press; moderately succeeding in disrupting United’s rhythm for a while. The approach paid off and just passed the hour good work down the right saw a useful delivery into the United area with Jess Hartopp stealing a march on the FC’s defence to volley past Jackson and level the scores.

United upped their intensity to more than match Altrincham’s endeavour and within four minutes of being pegged back, the red’s were back in front. Chelsea Patient marauded down the right from her defensive station and swept a ball into the box. Battle, onside, gambled on the keeper making a mistake and she duly obliged presenting the striker with an open goal.

In the gathering dusk United pressed their advantage and Fran Sullivan played in Cara Fields who shot from range with Alarcon-Conde fumbling once more, helping the ball into her net. With time and light fading in equal measure Flanagan earned and scored an 81st minute penalty firing low into the bottom corner to round off a satisfying performance and result.

The win sees United consolidate top spot in the league with 5 games to go and the hectic run in continues this Friday, 13th April, in defence of the Manchester Women’s Cup when the reds take on Manchester Stingers in the Final at West Didsbury & Chorlton’s ground (7.30pm KO). Two days later, Sunday 15th, they travel to play City of Liverpool (2pm KO) in the league before another midweek outing on 18th when they travel to Stockport County Blues. Get yourselves to those football grounds as all your support is very much appreciated and could make all the difference.

Report by Rob Fullen
FC Player of the game: Chelsea Patient – following up her solid display at the weekend, Chelsea has introduced a level of poise and control to her defending and made a very positive contribution on a tricky surface, even claiming an assist (for Jess Battle’s goal).

Teams 11th April 2018: Attendance: 61

FC United of Manchester: 4 (1)
1. Gemma Jackson
2. Fran Davies
3. Abbie Carrington
5. Chelsea Patient
17. Jess McCarrick
4. Olivia Greenhalgh
7. Fran Sullivan
8. Alice Forshaw
9. Jess Battle (Goal 66 mins)
10. Chelsea Flanagan (Goals 23 & 81 mins [Pen])
11. Kirsty Chambers (Capt)
14. Jennifer Lomax (for No9 75 mins)
15. Nicole Hatcliffe (for No11 55 mins)
18. Cara Fields (for No4 55 mins)
Roll on Roll Off:
On No4 for No17 83 mins
On No17 for No7 90+2 mins

Altrincham FC Ladies: 1 (0)
1. Paula Alarcon-Conde
2. Kye Brown
3. Georgia Ashton
5. Louise Edleston
6. Aimee Hopkinson
16. Bliss Molyneaux (Capt)
7. Jess Hartopp (Goal 62 mins)
8. Gail Simpson
9. Jade Hesketh
12. Megan Rowley
23. Beth Hayes
4. Kate Bryan (for No12 32 mins)
15. Nadine Spoule (for No9 30 mins)
17. Melissa Williams (for No23 67 mins)
Roll on Roll Off:
On No9 for No7 83 mins

Referee: Stephen Watson
Asst Referee: Dan Adelman
Asst Referee: N/K
Venue: Mersey Valley Sports Club, Banky Lane, Sale, M33 5SL
Official FC photography by Mark Lee
Social Media Updates from Mikey Partington
Film Footage & Historical Stats from Neil Boo
Match Stats by Paul Hinson from: www.liveteamstats.com
FC United stats first column:
Goals: 4.............1
Shots on target: 7.............3
Shots off target: 9.............4
Corners: 5.............0
Completed Passes: 339........106
Possession: 76%.......24%

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First Posted ~ 19:14 Thu 12 Apr 2018
News ID ~ 7845
Last Updated ~ 14:42 Fri 13 Apr 2018