Manchester C 1 OOH Lincoln 1
OOH Lincoln all but confirmed the runners up spot to Liverpool with a late late show at Manchester City yesterday. A Leandra Little leap of faith headed home Carla Ward`s 82nd minute corner after the hosts had taken a 64th minute lead courtesy of Becki Grocott. The point means Leicester must win both their games and the Imps fail to get a single point in our remaining three if we are to be overtaken for second place. Though Liverpool go up as champions, top flight status is of course assured next spring after the backing of Ray Trew saw the Lincoln ladies join the elite.
Women`s Premier League Northern League.
Pos / Team /Pld / W / D / L / GD /Pts
1 Liverpool LFC 21 18 2 1 38 56
2 OOH Lincoln LFC 19 12 4 3 22 40
3 Leicester City WFC 20 10 5 5 17 35
4 Manchester City LFC 19 8 5 6 9 29
5 Leeds City Vixens LFC 21 9 2 10 -6 29
6 Newcastle United WFC 21 7 6 8 -7 27
7 Aston Villa LFC 17 6 7 4 4 25
8 Curzon Ashton LFC 19 7 4 8 -3 25
9 Preston North End WFC 21 6 5 10 2 23 10
Sheffield Wednesday WFC 22 4 6 12 -21 18
11 Derby County LFC 20 4 5 11 -21 17
12 Luton Town LFC 16 0 3 13 -34 3
This was the second of three games in six days for the LadyImps. Last Thursday saw a win at Derby (1-0) and Tuesday sees a game at Curzon Ashton as the whistle stop tour continues. The Ladies are also awaiting confirmation of both the home an away postponement against Luton. The Hatters tale has been a strange saga in itself with first finances being of concern and then last weeks Ash cloud seeing players stranded on their holidays and unable to raise a team.
Manchester employed the Italian style ‘deadbolt` and counter attack favoured by Chris Sutton against the more open, aesthetic and offensive flowing football of the LadyImps. Carla Ward almost sprung an opening after 15 minutes when she headed Barr`s cross against the foot of a post. A sweet Stacey Aisthorpe cross caressed the other post seven minutes before half time.
The Thursday game was weighing heavy on the ladies with the hosts getting more of the ball second half. A superb incisive through ball spread the LadyImps like Flora and allowed Grocki to flower as she fired past Kay Hawke one on one. Grea goal, great time to get it, could the ladies respond?
Rod Wilson went for a not so little and ever so large approach up front throwing on Leandra Little to partner Aisthorpe. The super sub duly obliged as the duo powered and flowered to ultimately dig out a deserved equaliser as Little leapt to force a towering header home with eight minutes to spare. Indeed she almost made it two from Richardson`s cut-back, but her fierce shot cannoned back off the bar and into the grateful arms of Worrall in the City goal.
Lincoln boss Rod Wilson was not too despondent at the final whistle.
“In the end a draw was a fair
result,” he said. “We looked tired and leggy towards the end after playing on Thursday. If we`d got the goal our play deserved in the first half we would have gone on to win convincingly. Although we had to make lots of changes I still think we were the better team.”
The weather also did the lady Imps football no favours in all honesty as Rod agreed.
“The heavens opened just before kick-off which made the pitch slippery and players were sliding all over the place. I don`t think we mastered the conditions the way we did at Derby.”
Wilson also had words of praise for his battling forward line.
“Leandra led the line brilliantly when she moved up front. She drove us on and might have scored another couple. She`s such a handful up there and was too much for them. Stacey`s workrate today was absolutely tremendous given she`d produced exactly the same on Thursday night. I was delighted with the commitment. We kept trying and could even have snatched a winner at the end.”
LADY IMPS (4-3-3): Hawke; Durrands (B Johns 67), Little (c), Futter, Stray; Barker, Cook, Ward; Aisthorpe, Barr (Richardson 55), Crossman (Faux 69)