Leeds Ladies FC split its squad in two last Sunday to play a first team FA Plate game against Southampton Saints at Ossett Town and a development game against Guiseley at Harrogate Railway, two games, two teams, one club as is the way of things with The Phoenix.
The first team lost the game having led twice during 90 minutes but conceding twice in extra time following some very bizarre circumstances that led to Soton’s physio being sent off for challenging the officials about an over inflated ball which was causing players injuries. Leeds captain Emma Bentley has to be substituted after heading a clearance and when Erin White complained to the referee after feeling the full force of the ball from a midfield header the coaches from both teams complained. Having checked the ball and finding it to be inflated to 16psi, 5psi over the allowed limit, the officials decided that the measurement did not reflect the above sea level allowance and therefore ignored the players, the coaches and the fans protestations.
The game as a spectacle at this point was ruined and the emphasis became one of self preservation for the players who continued to kick out the over inflated ball at every opportunity which is a shame as this was supposed to be a competitive game.
The highlight turned out to be Carey ‘Kez’ Huegetts challenge to the fans to chase and copy the linesman, which they duly obliged as demonstrated on our YouTube channel. I am pleased to say the linesman did enjoy it too.
Despite much of the possession and a host of missed chances Leeds Ladies lost the game 2-4 and attention now moves to this coming Sunday and a County Cup game against Tingley Reserves at Knaresborough, 2pm Kick off.
Our development team enjoyed their first win of the season playing some very good football against Guiseley at Harrogate Railway. Guiseley must be sick of seeing Leeds Ladies FC following our first team win away only ten days previously. Goals from Rachel Ackroyd and Sophie Varley sealed a deserved 2-1 victory. Assistant coach Lee Townend was impressed by the effort and quality of his team with dominant performances by Bridie Hannon and a quality goal line clearance by Emily Owens standing out amongst a team full of great individual performances.
On Friday 10th Leeds Ladies FC Supporters Club held a fund raising event at Beeston Hill Sports and Social Club raffling off the Inbetweeners replica car and auctioning LUFC and Leeds Ladies merchandise and memorabilia. The event raised £1300 to help fund the girls season, our thanks got to Brendan, Martin and Spooky for all the effort they put into making it such a success.
Watch out for low flying phoenixes as our very own ‘Phyllis’ is due to make her debut at a home game very soon, the kids will love her, the opposition will fear her and I am told Lucas the Kopcat is after her phone number – We all love Leeds 😉
Reporter – Gary Cooper Photography– Alex Knight