Match Report | Salford City Lionesses 3-3 West Women (West win 2-1 on pens) – West Didsbury & Chorlton AFC

Match Report | Salford City Lionesses 3-3 West Women (West win 2-1 on pens)

So, quarter final stage of the Manchester Women’s Cup saw us drawn away to Salford City, who play in the NWWRFL Div 1 South, from which we were promoted last season. In Gary Neville’s favourite dream, this match would have been played on a 4G pitch at Turn Moss. Thanks to the efforts of many, we were away at Partington Sports Village instead.

I know people warm to the idea of a Cupset and the Magic of the Cup, but when you’re facing an in-form team in a league below, what you could really do with is a quiet, drama free afternoon and a comfortable victory.

Did we get one?

Did we ‘eck.

Following an early free-kick for West (awarded for a foul – the first of many) being saved at the second attempt, it was Salford who took the lead. Our defence allowed two of their players far too much time in the box, and they took full advantage, West trailing 0-1 after 6 minutes.

It was another 5 minutes before West had a chance. Amy Vyas turning well in the Salford area put seeing her shot pushed out for a corner, which came to nothing. On 19 minutes Amy did a similar thing, but slightly off balance, her left footed effort drifted high and wide. This had been preceded a couple of minutes earlier by Salford almost doubling their lead. A combination of Leah in goal, and some seriously desperate defending just about managed to keep the score at 0-1.

Throughout the first half it had become noticeable just how many fouls were being committed by some of the Salford players. The referee had failed to take any action, even so much as a quick word, or a wag of a finger, and Salford took advantage of this.

In the meantime, Biff was becoming more influential for West, first seeing a shot of her own drift wide on 28 minutes, and then a fabulous through ball to Jami results in her shot bobbling just wide.

Jami was also seeing quite a bit of action, unfortunately most of it involved her being fouled as her pace and dribbling was clearly a cause for concern for Salford. After what seemed like a succession of fouls, one was finally punished and in the penalty area too! Still no caution, or even a warning, but at least it gave Shortz the chance to smash the ball high into the net from the penalty spot to get us level.

It was on 44 minutes that the referee finally spoke to a Salford player about persistent fouling, but we could only assume that her cards and book had been left in the car. Unfortunately the resulting free-kick was straight at the keeper.

Worse was to come in the second minute of added time. The Salford 7 dribbling with the ball took a slight touch from one of our players. The ball rolled away from her slightly and her subsequent right-footed lunge was over the ball and connected painfully with Ellie Caddick’s foot. A nasty challenge. If I was being charitable, I’d call it reckless. Either way, it ended Ellie’s afternoon and the referee when finally managing to show a little interest in her condition, still couldn’t bring herself to speak to the Salford player, let alone book her. A bizarre first half for the official.

With the second half underway, and Leah Dolan replacing the injured Caddy, things were a little quieter for a few minutes. Other than a free kick for West which was blazed over, there was little action to speak of. On 56 minutes there were a couple of changes for West. Abi was replaced by Alex Martin for her debut, and Vicky Kerr continued her return to action, allowing Shortz a breather for a few minutes.

A couple of minutes later, West had the lead. A lovely through ball by H found Jami who again provided the danger for the Salford defence, this time with a sweet finish of her own. 2-1 to West.

Things were quiet up until the 70th minute. The calm before the storm. At least it was goals and not fouls!.

On 70 minutes Salford grabbed an equaliser, the first shot being parried by Leah, but their 7 was first to the loose ball to fire home. 2-2.

7 minutes later and Salford regained the lead. Their 9 who had come on as a substitute a few minutes earlier had changed the game. Pace and precision led to their 7 getting in behind again and finishing well past Leah. 2-3.

Only a couple of minutes later and Shortz who was back on the pitch after her breather wasn’t picked up by the Salford defence. Amy Vyas picked her out with the pass though, defensive hands and voices raised for offside, but Shortz wasn’t. She curls the ball past the outstretched arm of the diving keeper to get West back on terms. 3-3.

Proper end to end stuff now with both keepers forced into saves, Leah making two excellent stops against the Salford 9.

Paige replaced Amy on 83 minutes and there was still time for both sides to almost grab the win. Leah making a save after the ref had missed a handball, and Paige hitting the side netting.

Full-time. 3-3. Straight to penalties. Penalties divide opinion, don’t they? Some say an exciting way to decide a match, others that it’s little more than a lottery. Which did we get? Well, the only thing I can think to call it is pants. Here’s how it went.

Shortz scores. 1-0

Leah saves! 1-0

Vicky hits the bar (just like Friday night) 1-0

Salford miss 1-0

Salford keeper saves 1-0

Salford 10 scores 1-1

Salford keeper saves 1-1

Salford 7 misses 1-1

Paige scores! 2-1

Salford 9 steps up……..LEAH SAVES!! West win 2-1 and I hope we never have penalties again.


Team: Fish (GK), Caddick (Dolan 45′), Wilman, Mason, Littler (Martin 56′), Hodges (Edmondson 72′), Mitchell, Edmondson (Kerr 56′), Woods, Livesey, Vyas (Chalmers 83’). Subs: Schilling

Attendance: 25