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Gloucestershire County Women's Challenge cup Final

Cirencester Town ladies were delighted to make the County cup final in their 1st season back.

Cirencester went into this cup final as the under dogs with Cheltenham ladies topping the league and Cheltenham being the winners of both league meetings this season. And most of Cirencester young players have came up against the young Cheltenham side in youth football and never been on the winning side.

It was classic cup final that Cirencester dug in deep to come back into the game from 2-0 down at half time from a brilliant brace from Emily Wilson.

Cirencester had to make some changes as club captain Libby Messenger was missing from this big match , due to a holiday booked before reaching the cup final, which she was very disappointed in missing her 1st game in 5 seasons.Poppy Romback took the arm band and lead the Cirencester team out. And Eleanor Hillier slotted into the middle of the park. Player manager Karen Messenger had to name herself on the bench due to missing regular player Mia Higginson who unfortunately been in and out this season due to injury.

Cheltenham started the better of the 2 teams and found themselves a goal up within 5 minutes with a well taken goal, the start Cirencester didn't want. Cirencester seemed nervous but as the game went on they grew into the game and settled down. So they started to compete With Good play on the right from Ange Bailey linking up well with Charlie Brewster and Tam Davies and Eleanor Hillier making some good runs from the middle. On the half hour mark Cheltenham striker broke through and found herself one on one with the Cirencester keeper Alex Hobbs who made a brilliant one handed save to keep her team in the game. Then a couple minutes after Alex came out brave again to collect the ball and a Cheltenham striker collided with her cutting her lip and receiving a knock to the head , so unfortunately for Alex and a blow for Cirencester she couldn't play on. Sub Karen Messenger had to pull on the keeper shirt. Then just before the whistle for half time Cheltenham striker put Cheltenham 2 up to send them in with a 2 goal cushion.

Co-manger Callum Higginson managed to focus the team at half time. Cirencester were determined to get themselves back in the game with some solid defending by the superb back 3 of Lucy Scrannage, Freya Sullivan and Poppy Romback .They got the perfect start to the 2nd half as Emily Wilson found herself in space to strike an up stoppable shot right over the top of the Cheltenham keeper. This lifted Cirencester who were getting better and better as the game went on and every player was enjoying the occasion and were up for the tough battle. With the Cirencester spectators getting behind their team this encouraged the Cirencester girls but was unsettling the Cheltenham players , who were getting frustrated and gave a away a few free kicks and saw 2 of their players picking up yellow cards. Half way through the half Emily Wilson found herself in the same position again and mirrored her 1st goal with another fantastic strike which then gave the local girls a belief they could get something out of this game. Bec Brannon was coursing problems up front for the Cheltenham defence but just couldn't find a way through. Neve Peachy and Emilie Townsend were having a great battle on the left in front of the crowd And Bo Stephens was opening up play on the right. The game was opening up as both teams were going for the win. Cirencester were dealt another blow when Tam Davies was brought down and had to limp off, again they battled on. Cheltenham thought they extended the lead again when they broke through Messenger made two blocks in goal and Cheltenham put the ball in the back of the net but the initial striker was flagged to be off side.

The last 10 minutes was end to end. With 1 minute to go Cirencester manager swooped herself out of goal to give youngster Poppy the gloves with penalties looming who use to play in goal for Swindon Town. But before the final whistle Cirencester had to defend 2 corners which they chuckled themselves at to send this exciting game to a penalty shoot out.

Cirencester were just thrilled to get this far so they would of been pleased with any result from here. Cirencester stayed calm and they seemed to soak up the pressure and the atmosphere of the evening. Bec Brannon , Emily Wilson and Charlie Brewster all slotted home their penalties for Cirencester , with Cheltenham 3rd taker missing hers , Cheltenham keeper managed to stop CIREN's 4th Poppy's Rombacks so all was level at 3-3 Cheltenham 5th taker shot hers over the bar so Freya Sullivan had to step up , which she calmly did to seal the victory for Cirencester ladies and send her team mates into celebrations with lifting and bringing home the cup.

This entry was posted on 09 April 2019 at 08:05 and is filed under Miscellaneous | Ladies Teams. You can leave a response here.

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