Burnley FC Women v Norton & Stockton Ancients 

FA WNL North Division 1

The Arbories home of Padiham FC

Sunday 16th September 2018

Two early goals through player of the match Leah Embley and another from Evie Priestley were enough to gift Burnley FC Women a third win in a row and propel them to second in the league table.

The Clarets made a solid start to the encounter attacking up the slope. In the 4th minute Leah Embley received the ball in midfield and slipped past a marker to drive down the wing and cross in front of goal. A defender’s interception rebounded back to her and seeing the keeper off her line she lobbed over her and opened the scoring.

Directly from the restart the visitors raided down the Clarets left side and crossed to a centrally positioned striker who stretched out to scissor kick at goal. The ball struck the inside of the post and bounced sideways into the arms of Clarets stopper Lauren Bracewell, to the great relief of the Clarets.

Norton and Stockton were determined to get level and were quickly attacking again and testing Bracewell, but the Clarets were dealt a blow when defender Danielle Cooper limped off with an Achilles strain. With both teams finding ways through the opposition’s defensive lines, another goal was looking likely. The Clarets luck was in when Priestley picked out Embley with a pass. Embley again powered down the wing and crossed back to Priestley who guided the ball past the keeper into the net. 2-0.

The visitors were showing signs of frustration but fought back and were rewarded for their efforts when a free kick from 20 yards struck the Clarets bar and the rebound landed at the feet of a striker who powered a shot into the net from close range.

Later in the half a long ball allowed a Norton & Stockton striker to cut through on goal and from a sharp angle a shot hit the Clarets post and hence another let off.

As the game entered the second period both Evie Priestley and Sarah Greenhalgh had one on one duals with the visitor’s keeper who won the challenges on all occasions. As time passed by the visitors started to vent their frustration and the challenges became more physical. They still managed to create chances and forced Bracewell to make a diving interception from a cross and in the final minutes Bracewell also won a one on one with a visitor’s striker.

Next week Burnley FC Women face Liverpool Feds in the SSE Women’s FA Cup second qualifying round. Kick-off is 2pm at Padiham FC’s the Arbories ground.