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MATCH REPORT: Town Blast Through Boldmere St Michaels in League Cup

Report by Cameron Felton

Seventh heaven for Town as they turn on the style against Boldmere St Michaels in the Women’s National League Cup Determining Round.

PHOTO: JESS HORNBY

Huddersfield Town Women turned on the style as they dispatched National League Division 1 Midlands side Boldmere St Michaels, looking to right the wrongs of last week after the disappointing 4-0 defeat away at Burnley last weekend.
Brooke Marsden and Britt Sanderson grabbing braces, with Ria Montgomery, Kate Mallin and Lucy Sowerby also finding the back of the net for Steve Appleton’s side.

Town started the first period strong with Marsden coming closest in the opening five with her shot being blocked by the Boldmere defence, but the deadlock was soon broken in the sixth as Montgomery’s amazing run wasn’t dealt with and she put the ball past Daisy Jenkins in the Boldmere goal.

PHOTO: JESS HORNBY

11 minutes later Boldmere were on terms after Macy Fox found enough space in Town’s box to finish past Becky Flaherty in the town goal, from then on Town really started piling the pressure on, Sanderson firing just wide from outside the box not long after.

Town retook the lead after 18 minutes, Marsden getting the first of her double after tapping in from close range.
The division one side nearly hit back straight away but their shot fizzed over Flaherty’s goal and Boldmere were made to pay. Five minutes later, Town stretched further in front after a deflected ball forward fell at the feet of Sanderson and she fired into the back of the net for her first of the game.

The half-way mark of the period passed, and Town could’ve extended their lead, Marsden getting on the end of a fantastic cross and forced Boldmere keeper Jenkins into a save, moments later Sowerby nearly snuck one into the far-right top corner, her venomous shot hitting the back of a Boldmere defender and cannoning back off the underside of the bar.

PHOTO: JESS HORNBY

Two minutes later it was Boldmere’s turn to hit the bar, after some brilliant interception play, the ball is played forward and luckily for town bounces off the bar and they’re able to clear any danger.

Still more drama in the 1st period as Town so nearly had a fourth as a bouncing ball wasn’t dealt with by the Boldmere defence and bounces over the ‘keeper but a defender manages to get back and clear off the line.

The second period started just as dramatic as the first finished, Town hitting the bar again after getting round the keeper and getting a shot away and moments later Georgia Marshall comes close with her header.

Sanderson got her second of the game two minutes later as Boldmere hesitated on the ball and a wayward pass fell straight at Sanderson’s feet and she placed it past Jenkins in the visitor’s goal.

PHOTO: JESS HORNBY

Mallin was straight into the action after coming off the bench as she gets down the line to deliver a brilliant ball into Sowerby, the latter unable to convert from close range. Moments later Mallin extended town’s lead after a brilliant ball over the top is matched with a brilliantly timed run and kept her composure whilst bearing down goal and coolly stroked the ball into the far-left corner, well out the reach of Jenkins outstretched arms.

The action didn’t stop there as town were running rampant and three minutes later made it six as Sowerby’s effort hits the post but rebounds to an acceptant Marsden, who tapped home for Towns sixth and her second.

10 minutes before the end Annie Highway got a goal back for the visitors but Sowerby finally found the net for Town after an afternoon of frustration for the forward. Boldmere giving a freekick away just over 18 yards out, slightly left of centre and the Town forward did no more than smash the ball towards goal and watching her shot cannon off the inside of the post and nestle in the opposite corner without bouncing. An impressive goal to finish and impressive performance off the Terriers and booking their place in the next round of the league cup.

PHOTO: JESS HORNBY

Manager Steve Appleton speaking after the game:

I think on occasions we looked comfortable in the game, but you can’t switch off, Boldmere scored two goals, second ones a really good finish probably not much we could’ve done about that one but the first goals a bit sloppy on our point of view

After last weekend’s disappointing defeat at Burnley, Appleton said his team have been a bit inconsistent but was much happier after this afternoon’s emphatic win in front of the terriers fans at the Stafflex,

“You’ve got to be happy, were in the next round of the cup, we’ve scored seven goals and some of our football was superb and Boldmere came here to cause an upset so we had to be professional with what we did and we know the players reacted in the right way”

Town are next in action against Wolverhampton Wanderers on Sunday 26th September with a 2pm kick-off time here at the Stafflex Arena

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MATCH PREVIEW: Burnley Away

Huddersfield Town Women travel away to Burnley for their fifth league game in the FAWNL.

This will be Town’s fourth away game in five as they look to maintain their unbeaten start to the season. However Burnley were the only team to take all three points from Town last season in a 2-1 win. This is something manager Steve Appleton is aware of:

“Whether you win, lose or draw against Burnley, it’s always a tough game, so that’s exactly what we’re preparing for on Sunday.

Burnley are a strong side defensively and can break quickly in possession and we’ll have to play well to get a result, but these are the challenges you look forward to every week at this level and we have to be ready for the best version of Burnley at the weekend.”

The Lancashire side sit 9th in the league on just three points. They opened the season with a 4-0 win against Sheffield FC before a 4-1 loss to Nottingham, a 2-0 loss to Fylde and last week a 2-1 loss to Derby County.

Meanwhile Huddersfield are 5th in the table following two wins and two draws. Manager, Steve commented on this run:

“I think our performances have improved with each game, so we are gaining momentum every week, so the key thing now is to continue to build it.

We’re still settling in to our style of play and the team has changed each week, so it’s still a period of transition really, but that said, there’s no reason why we shouldn’t look for consistency as the season progresses.”

Kick off is from 2pm Sunday, with match updates via Twitter @HTAFCWomen.

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MATCH PREVIEW: Loughborough Away

Huddersfield head to Loughborough this Sunday in their fourth league game of the season. The Terriers have been on an unbeaten start in the league following two draws and the win last Sunday.

The university team merged with Loughborough Foxes to become Loughborough Lightning and play their home games at the Loughborough University Stadium. This was one team Huddersfield didn’t face last season due to COVID disrupting the fixture calender, however the season before saw the Terriers victorious against the Midlands side including a competitive game in the Women’s FA Cup.

Jess Hornby

Loughborough come into this game unbeaten too following a 2-2 draw at home to Hull and a dominant 3-0 win against Sheffield FC. Town manager, Steve Appleton says his team are prepared:

I expect every game to be tough and Loughborough will be no exception, it’s another away game for us, but the squad will arrive on Sunday ready for the battle.

I expect them to be well prepared, focused and ready to produce a performance worthy of taking the three points.

Jess Hornby

This game also brings an end to the August fixture list with the season starting on the 15th. Steve reflected on the start to his time as Huddersfield manager:

It’s been quite hectic, with four games coming within the first two weeks of the season, but saying that, I’ve loved every second, the players and staff have made it easy for me to settle into the job and we’re working well together.

Kick off is from 2pm Sunday, with match updates via Twitter @HTAFCWomen.

By Oliver Eaton

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Alison Bamforth becomes new HTWFC Chair

Huddersfield Town Women are delighted to announce that Alison Bamforth has been appointed as new Chair.

Alison was appointed as Chair at the recent HTWFC Committee AGM by her fellow Committee members and took up the position before the start of the 2021/22 season. Former Chair David Mallin will continue his involvement with the club in a Secretary role. Whereas Tess Fawcett will continue as Club Treasurer.

On her appointment as Chair, Alison said:

“I am honoured and proud to be appointed to represent Huddersfield Town Women as Chair. To be given the opportunity to continue the great work of the committee as a whole, and David [Mallin] in particular after his 12 years in the role of Chair is a privilege and honour.”

“I have been involved with HTWFC for almost 4 years since moving back to the area; first as a volunteer coach and recently as a member of the committee. I am passionate about football in general, and women’s football in particular, and look forward to contributing to the club’s continued success.”

“It is fantastic to be able to welcome fans back to the Stafflex Arena; please do come and say hello! If you’re intrested in volunteering with the club or sponsoring us, please get in contact with me: chair@htwfc.co.uk”

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MATCH REPORT: Town Women Held at Home Against Brighouse Town on Wednesday Night at the Stafflex Arena

Huddersfield Town Women played out a thrilling game of football against local rivals Brighouse Town with early chances, both teams having the fair share of possession during the 90 minutes. The first half was intriguing to say the least as both teams enjoyed attacking, free flowing football under the lights with a packed house watching on.

In the 14th minute mark the visitors were to create their first real chance in the opening period out of both teams, the ball delivered into the box but snatched at, as it slowly crept into the goalkeepers gloves.

As the contest took its cause under the lights, a good tackle by Paige Crossman was aplauded by the fans with groans following the referees verdict of a thrown in for the visitors. Brighouse themselves continued to threaten piling on their own pressure, up for the fight as they used the wings numerous times to try and exploit the Terriers. A real battle was on our hands from attack to defence as both managers looked on from the touchline.

There were some mistakes made by the Terriers backline but these went unpunished, the Terriers would then go into the break finishing the first half the strongest after winning two corners in quick succession.

Moments later there were cries of a back pass as the Brighouse keeper was adjudged to have breached the ball back into her gloves. Becky Flaherty was highly reponsible in making the biggest impact in the first period making a game defining save just on the brink of half time, saving from the spot wonderfully after Georgia Marshall fouled in the penalty area. This meant both teams went into the break all square with all to do in the second half.

Town put together their first opportunity of the second period straight away fired up from the dressing room, Kate Mallin weaving in and out trying to find the corner, just after Becky Flaherty made another great save this time in a one on one situation. The goalkeeper consistent as ever as she continued to cover nicely running out and getting to the ball first after a Brighouse counter attack in the 57th minute.

Something was to give and this became a reality with 18 minutes to go on the clock. Britt Sanderson converting from close range after the corner kick was delivered in. She was there to poke home. With Steve Appleton going to reinforcements to try and keep hold of the lead or even double it. The visitors looked for a late goal and got their wish as Town were left heartbroken in the last stages the contest ending 1-1.

Steve Appleton, Town manager was left disappointed after his team conceded late on. “It is disappointing it was a very good performance by the girls, I thought we were the better team throughout the game. A bit of a soft penalty which Becky saved again and then the late goal and it’s the only few occasions where I feel they have laid a glove on us. But at this level of football you switch off and teams will take advantage and unfortunately that’s what happened there.”

Appleton is aware his team has a great deal of quality. “I can’t argue with the effort and commitment of the players, they have absolutely everything tonight including a really good performance all round and in the heat of a Derby game to sort of play with the intelligence, the attitude was superb.”

On the goalkeeping option with Bethan Davies available and Becky Flaherty performing well once again. Appleton said, “The goalkeeping situation is a huge part but is isn’t a problem for me personally, it’s fantastic to have such quality in both keepers, the situation is good one.”

With the game out the way at home the Terriers will face Loughborough away this Sunday. Steve Appleton will need to gather his troops ahead of another big game in the league campaign.

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MATCH PREVIEW: Town Women take on Brighouse Town in the FAWNL at the Stafflex Arena on Wednesday evening

Town Women host local rivals Brighouse Town in their third game of the season at home in front of fans on Wednesday evening. The fixture is a late 7.45pm kick off with many fans from both sides expected through the gates to witness the action. 

Jessica Hornby

Despite being in separate leagues last season, both teams met in a thrilling 1-1 draw that saw the Terriers victorious during the penalty shootout. If this Women’s FA Cup match was anything to go by, then Wednesday is set to be another tight contest. Brighouse have also shown that they have an attacking threat with 7 goals scored in 2 games.

Previously Huddersfield made it their first win of the season as they beat Middlesbrough 3-1 at Billingham Town Football Club on Sunday. Ria Montgomery opened the scoring, a long range strike chopped over the keeper, her first official goal for Town in the 14th minute. Laura Elford made it two 4 minutes later with Katie Stanley finishing the game off in style 5 minutes before half time smashing the ball into the back of the net from close range.

Jessica Hornby

Interim Manager Steve Appleton gave his take on the feeling around the club at this stage.

“I feel very fortunate to be able to work with such a talented group of players and be part of a club with great staff with the ambition to be successful.”

On his knowledge of the opposition having been involved in the Women’s Football pyramid for some time, Appleton said: 

“I’ve been previously involved at Stoke Women and Liverpool Feds over a number of seasons and have continually followed the league wherever I’ve been coaching. I’ve come up against a lot of teams and players in our league, so I can prepare for games with some knowledge of our opponents as well as putting together a game plan for ourselves.”

The Town Manager admits the occasion is massive with a homecoming for his side. Appleton is committed in keeping momentum going from the successful season last year. 

“You can’t get better than a home debut, under the lights against a local rival, I’m really looking forward to it and hopefully we’ll get a good crowd behind us, support good the team.”

“It’s about maintaining a degree of continuity, the club was in a great position when I took over, so the plan is to build on that, we’ve made some great additions to our squad, we’ll try to make some small adjustments to our playing style, but we’re trying to make the transition from pre pandemic to now, as seamless as possible.”

He is relieved to see fans back in the football world and understands what the nature of the game means to so many around the world.

“It’s been so long since anyone has been able to watch football, so just having our supporters there will be a massive boost to everyone and from a personal standpoint, I’m looking forward to meeting with as many as I can.”

“I’ve learnt very quickly how much this game means to the players and from my experience of being involved in local derby’s, I’m expecting nothing less than a full blooded affair, with both teams giving their all for the 3 points. Last seasons FA Cup game won’t count for anything on the day, it’s all about Wednesday night and I couldn’t be happier to be a part of it.”

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MATCH REPORT: Town Devs Comprehensively defeat Leicester City

Town Devs run riot at Leicester City in a 7-2 score line at Leicester City Training Ground on Sunday afternoon, in a ruthless game of football from the Terriers perspective.

A thrilling victory winning by a margin of 5 goals as the Terriers broke immensely, outpacing and outrunning the opposition. The first half brought various chances with Zoe Laughton getting an early opportunity following a corner. The corner fell to Alice Linsell whose shot fell straight into the hands of the keeper.

A cloudy Leicester turned wet as the contest was fairly steady in the opening stages with both sides seeing plenty of possession. Falone Sumaili broke the deadlock in the 11th minute as she continued to thrive in a Terriers shirt getting the visitors underway. Shortly after Macy Ellis was offered the chance to double the lead, her shot straight at the ‘keeper who punched the ball out for a corner.

Sumaili would go again in the game utilising her fierce pace, doubling her goal tally after a misplaced pass by Leicester City allowed her to go round the corner slotting the ball beyond the reach of the ‘keeper. Just three minutes after scoring she nearly had her hatrick with just 19 minutes on the clock chipping the goalkeeper but to her luck the ball rattled the crossbar.

Zoe Laughton also proved to be a handful for the Foxes as she also hit the bar after her free kick from just outside the box. The set piece hit the wall but her rebound shot slammed the bar. The Terriers weren’t to sit back as they continued to attack at the top of the pitch making it three in quick succession as Macy Ellis grabbed her first of the afternoon.

As well as, Laughton finding her groove to grab an assist, she also registered a goal for the second game running, scoring a header from outside the 18 years box. As the whistle blew for half time Town were in control heading into the break four goals better off than their opposition, looking for more in the second period to Leicester’s disappointment which was clear to see.

Town continued to pile on the pressure searching for more goals but Leicester did pull one back two minutes into the second half. The Terriers did however suffer a set back, the first negative of the afternoon as the captain pulled up, the manager forced into a change with Sharone Buckle substituted. Leicester would not lie down trying to regain control getting another but Town were also hungry for more goals. Gibrill-Keating was on hand to find the back of the net with a pass in after a keeper spillage from a corner taken by Tara Duce.

But just as the game neared the end Macy Ellis got her brace after a brilliant one two with Duce and completed her hatrick just eight minutes before full time, Duce once again drove the ball forward, the number 16 on hand to run around the ‘keeper and pass the ball at ease into the back of the net.

Mo Mouelhi was beaming in his smile at full time. “We worked hard for the past two weeks and put a lot into practice in training, tried to improve in the points we picked from previous games. We came in ready to this game. The score line was reflective of how dominant we were. I’m very pleased with all the players in what they put in so happy for this custody and happy for the players aswell.”

Mouelhi is aware his team have a great deal of quality. “Going forward we have pace and energy that’s what made the difference today and we played smart football around their defenders to create a great deal of chances. The finishing was high quality. I think watching our midfielders this is the best game I’ve seen them playing even though we made a few errors, they dominated the game. This is what fed Falone and Macy and to be fair for both of them the finishing was exceptional.”

With the friendly game out of the way the Terriers will face Stoke City at home next Sunday before the first league game against Liverpool Feds on September 5. Mo Mouelhi continues to marshall his troops with all eyes on the start of the season.

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MATCH REPORT: First win secured: Town Win 3-1 in Middlesbrough

Huddersfield Town Women were in pursuit of their first win of the season, as they faced a daring Middlesbrough Women team. Several chances fell for both teams during the 90 minutes, with defences being tested to the max.

During the early minutes of the game, Katie Stanley rose above the Boro’ defence as she took the ball from a defender and tried a shot, which was caught by the keeper near her right post.

Whilst bringing the ball forward, a brilliantly executed run by Mallin reached the opposition box but her shot was deflected out for a corner. The Terriers worked the ball out from the corner, eventually reaching Ria Montgomery, who disguised a cross into a perfect chip that lobbed the keeper and gave Ria her first goal for Town.

Plenty of chances fell in quick succession for Town, as Stanley received the ball on the left wing and dribbled magnificently from the half-way line up into the box before aiming a low cross to Elford who struck the ball into the back of the net, giving Town a two goal advantage at Middlesbrough.

After conceding, Boro responded quickly and managed to pull back a goal from a neat finish by Jess Foster, taking advantage of Town’s defence. Middlesbrough started to ease into the match and became a threat on the attack, testing Flaherty between the sticks. Another chance came for Boro, but once again Flaherty denied an equaliser with a fantastic save from close range.

Just before half-time, Stanley received the ball and converted from close range, giving Town their third goal in the first half, an excellent performance so far in the game.

Town continued to attack fiercely during the second half. Mallin took the defender on and beat her to have a slight chance at chipping the keeper, but sadly, the ball fell out of play before she could capitalise. Both sides made changes whilst entering the final 30 minutes.

Becky Flaherty was immense in goal, showing off her excellent reflexes with a close range save. Another effort was denied by her, keeping Town with a two-goal advantage late on in the game. Both sides tested each other in the second half, but only a few chances were big in comparison to the first half.

The full time whistle blew marking Huddersfield’s first win of the season. But now focus has to be adjusted onto their next game against Brighouse, which will be an exciting local rivalry in which The Terriers are looking to claim the bragging rights.

Manager, Steve Appleton post-match said:  

“[I’m] really happy with the win, a good three points. We’ve had two tricky away games and have come away with four points. So I am happy about that.”

“We showed three good parts to our game. We showed quality at times which created the opportunities and goals. We dug in and worked hard when we didn’t have the ball when Middlesbrough were on top. It’s a good three points and we’re happy.

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MATCH REPORT: Town Women Start the League Campaign with a Well-Earned Point

Huddersfield Town Women were challenged with a very physical but competitive game at the Pro Direct Stadium on the weekend as both teams were in pursuit of the cutting edge to break the deadlock. The first half brought very few chances with a edgy, scrappy game, both teams trying to find a way through each others’ defences.

A cloudy Nottingham turned very warm, the game taking a controversial turn in the 23rd minute, confusion from the linesman on whether there was a foul in the build up, a free kick given to the hosts with the ball smashed away, no pressure was applied to Town as they stayed robust at the back. 

Although the opposition did have a good spell in the first half, Town were much more potent in the second period but just before half time they had their best chances of the first half with cries of a corner as Lauren Griffiths played in a well weighted ball for Kate Mallin. Her pull back on the right deflecting behind for a corner with Mallin later playing through Laura Elford on the right but her shot hitting the side netting. Town were growing into the game nicely.

As half time arose both teams headed in level at Eastwood with the game level at the break, Town looking for that vital goal to put them in front. The Terriers started the second period much brighter, an effort by Elford on the right hand side placed wide of the right hand post as she tried to find the corner, more intent shown in the early stages of the second phase by the visitors. 

Town continued to pile on the pressure searching for the opening goal. Ria Montgomery giving us a moment to saviour with her fantastic dribbling as she worked away into a dangerous area on the right hand side. Dribbling in and out nicely, but the ball was taken from her feet just as she was about to find a supporting player. 

But it would be Bethan Davies to steal the headlines, making herself a hero in the dying ends of the contest saving from the spot after Forest were awarded a penalty. This was to be the last action in the East Midlands as both teams eventually had to settle for a point in the Women’s North League North. 

Steve Appleton, Town manager was content with his teams hard fought performance. “We kept a clean sheet, we didn’t lose the game, we could have quite easily lost it, especially giving the penalty away at the end, Bethan made a great save which kept us in the game so not our best but we take the point into the next game.”

Appleton is aware of how his team started both halves of the game. “We changed a couple of things in the second half, we came into the game a little bit more, but still we can do better and I’m sure we will in games to come. These are early stages, we move onto next week now.”

Bethan Davies also spoke to club media following her crucial save. “Important to get the penalty save in the last few minutes, fortunate to get away with the point I think it wasn’t our best performance today but first game of the season so got a lot of positives to take forward. My number one aim from the game is to get a clean sheet and again doing it in that way was a really good feeling so I’m really pleased going forward.” 

With the first league game out the way, the second league game at Middlesbrough follows for the Terriers on the coming Sunday with Steve Appleton looking for 3 points to kick start his teams season.

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MATCH REPORT: Routine Win for Town in Penultimate Pre-Season Fixture.

Huddersfield Town Women beat Greater Manchester side Stockport County by 2 goals to nil this past Sunday with goals from Laura Elford and Paige Crossman.

Town Celebrate After Scoring A Goal
CREDIT: JESSICA HORNBY

Following the news that broke Saturday morning about Jordan Wimpenny’s departure, this was the first game that saw Steve Appleton in charge. The Terriers came into this game following a competitive draw against Championship side Blackburn Rovers. The game started with both teams tending to cancel each other out around the midfield areas, although there were some positive spells for both teams as they attacked throughout the first half.

Paige Crossman Scores For Huddersfield
CREDIT: JESSICA HORNBY

Bethan Davies was forced into a fantastic save when a Stockport player broke into the box. Town’s Laura Elford opened the scoring after the half hour mark from a ball that looked like a cross, which found itself lobbing the goalkeeper from a wide position. Town nearly doubled their lead when a goalmouth scramble saw the ball crashing against the bar and off the line. Just before the half time whistle Macy Ellis had a golden opportunity to score her first ever senior Huddersfield goal when she side-stepped the keeper only for her shot to be cleared off the line.

The second half started just as the above rain cloud decided to burst. Like the first half, most possession was fought within the midfield areas with small glimpses of counter-attacks that failed to challenge either goalkeeper. New signing Ria Montgomery’s introduction to the game saw more attacking threat being utilised on the wide areas as Town were awarded a series of corners. One of these set-pieces allowed Town to double their lead when Paige Crossman headed into the back of the net. The rest of the half saw Town enjoy more attacking threat but failed to test the goalkeeper.

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