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Belles

REPORT| Belles 5-0 Burton Albion

13 March 2022

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Belles continued their promotion push with a comprehensive 5-0 win over Burton Albion in the FA WNL Division One Midlands.

Andy Butler made one change to the side that saw off Leafield a week ago, with Niamh Doody coming in for Emily Cahill. 

The game was being played at the Eco-Power stadium as part of the Rovers-Belles double-header to celebrate International Women's Day and the #HerGameToo campaign.

In a frantic opening, the Belles almost took the lead. A Lindsey Tugby shot was almost turned in at the near post by Nadia Khan, and moments later a cross by Sophie Bell again found Khan, but her header was superbly tipped wide by Langstone in the Burton goal.

Both teams were playing a controlled passing game, but with Belles on the front foot and posing much more of a threat. Lauren Breen was unlucky to see her shot hit the post from the edge of the box with the keeper stranded, and Jasmine Saxton turned her marker but saw her shot fly over the bar after being played in by Niamh Doody.

Khan continued to cause problems for the away defence and on 32 minutes would play a part in the first goal. Her looping cross into the box from the right found Lauren Breen at the back post for a neat header into the corner.

The lead was doubled 10 minutes later. A well driven corner by Breen found Jess Andrew on the edge of the six yard box and she diverted her header into the bottom corner.

The Belles went 3-0 up soon after the re-start. Burton were struggling to deal with Belles' wingback play, and on 49 minutes they failed to clear a Sophie Bell cross, which ricocheted to an unmarked Khan, who made no mistake into the top corner from 12 yards.

Spurred on by a large and increasingly noisy crowd, the Belles continued to put Burton under pressure, and on 72 minutes Breen doubled her tally. Another great cross by Bell found substitute Hannah McWilliams, whose bullet header was brillantly parried at point blank range by Langstone, but who was then unlucky to see the ball fall kindly for Breen to tap home from close range.

The Belles continued to press for a fifth and they almost got it. A corner by Breen found Phoebe Sneddon, but her header went just over the bar. Another shot by Bell cutting in from the right went just wide of the post.

Andy Butler’s side wrapped up the points with four minutes to go. A wonderful pass by Sophie Scargill found Jasmine Saxton who broke into the box and slotted home for her 16th goal of the season.

The win sees the Belles keep up the pressure on Boldmere St Michaels at the top of the table, with back-to-back five-goal wins for the first time this season.


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