FA Women’s National League – Premier North Division

Middlesbrough Women FC v Burnley FC Women

Billingham Town FC Stadium

Sunday 4th October 2020

Burnley FC Women fell to their second defeat at Billingham Town FC’s ground on Sunday afternoon, against Middlesbrough Women FC. With several players missing through injury and illness, the Clarets did not offer enough to leave with any points in the encounter. Middlesbrough Women dominated much of the play, whilst Burnley FC Women squandered numerous chances that could have turned the game around.

Middlesbrough started the game in the way they were to follow throughout. Simple but effective passing, maintaining possession and pressing forward when opportunity allowed. Striker, Bell, got a dangerous cross in early on, that floated through the Burnley defensive area.

Burnley FC Women’s Worthington always works hard in the central area, and this game was no different. She picked out Priestley who was able to strike at goal early on. Then, Hope fed through to Thomas who decided to try a shot from 25 yards. With plenty of pace the ball flew above the stranded home keeper and rattled her cross bar.

Middlesbrough made the first breakthrough when captain Bass received on the edge of Bracewell’s goal area and shot through a gap to score. 1-0.

Middlesbrough soon worked in another chance, setting up Young who shot straight into Bracewell’s arms. The Clarets were quick to pull a goal back, which came from a free kick passed wide to Shirtcliffe, who chipped over the home keeper to find Thomas running in to tap home. 1-1.

Thomas maintained pressure on the home side and broke through to shoot, forcing the keeper to dive and push the ball out for a corner. Then, in two other attacks Thomas was brought down by a central defender outside the area and two free kicks were awarded. Both were easily collected by the home keeper.

Middlesbrough responded to the pressure when striker, Marshall, who was well placed in Bracewell’s box shot high over the bar. For Burnley FC Women, both Greenhalgh and Hope shot late in the half, the first was straight at the keeper and the second was over the bar. The final chance fell to the home side when another cross in the box passed through unchallenged.

With the second half underway, Thomas found herself the victim of another challenge, this time by the other central defender. Frustratingly, the free kick went straight through to the keeper.

Middlesbrough scored the second when they opened the Clarets defence on the left side and Dodds slot the ball firmly into the net. 2-1.

Middlesbrough had chances to increase their tally, but Bracewell blocked the first attempt as she pulled a cross down and later, Brown shot over Bracewell’s bar.

Late in the game a free kick was awarded for another foul by a central defender on Thomas, in a forward position. Once more, the ball was driven through for the home keeper to catch. The final chance went to Middlesbrough Women’s Hutchinson, when Bass passed through, but Bracewell forced the ball to safety.

All in all, a disappointing afternoon for the Clarets. Matt Bee’s side will have work to do in training before the next outing against Hull City Ladies this Sunday.

Final Score: Middlesbrough Women 2 – 1 Burnley FC Women