Leamington Lions Ladies 0-21 Wolves Women
Haynes (7’, 51’, 57’, 60’, 64’, 68’, 75’), Dicken (10’, 22’, 90’), Grimshaw O.G (13’), Palmer (20’, 30’), J. Cross (37’, 80’, 83’, 86’, 87’), Bramford (54’, 55’), Walker (66’).
Wolves progressed into the third round of the Birmingham County Cup with an incredible statement victory over lower-league Leamington.
Billie Haynes notched seven, Jade Cross bagged five, Dicken slammed home three whilst an own goal and efforts from Jamila Palmer (two), Sophie Bramford (two) and Lowri Walker completed the set as Wolves hit a remarkable twenty-one.
The visitors began the half with grit between their teeth as they ensured complacency didn’t get in the way of progressing through into the next round; with the task of facing lower-league opposition on Sunday afternoon.
A fine long-range strike from Haynes got McNamara’s side up and running after seven minutes, and they didn’t look back from there.
Dicken soon added a second as she weaved her way through the Leamington backline, whilst Haynes turned provider for the third as her cross was fumbled by the opposition goalkeeper and turned in.
Palmer netted a first-half brace either side of Dicken’s second, the former with the simplest of finishes as she tapped home a parried effort from close-range before walking the ball in for her double.
It was only a matter of time before Jade Cross got in on the act – her 24th of the campaign as she fired home past Grimshaw to get her first of the afternoon.
Wolves continued their dominance in the second period, with Billie Haynes especially benefitting from a tactical tweak. Playing in a more advanced role than she did in the second, she went on to score six of the next nine goals as Wolves broke through Leamington at will.
Bramford hit two whilst substitute Walker also netted during that sequence as the visitors were desperate to score as many as possible.
Wolves smelt blood and when J Cross entered the frame after originally being substituted off, she helped herself to a further four goals in the final ten minutes to boost her remarkable season tally.
Cross’ fifth helped the girls to their 20th of the afternoon, a landmark achievement which was greeted with large cheers from the Wolves bench.
There was even time for a 21st as Dicken helped herself to her hat-trick moments before the full-time whistle as she put the gloss on a famous afternoon in Wolves Women history.
MOMENT OF THE MATCH
Goal number 20 was the highlight of the match. Wolves grabbed the ball immediately with every goal scored in the second period as they chased the impressive landmark, and they delivered when Cross scrambled the ball home to achieve the fantastic feat.
Manager Dan McNamara was delighted to progress into the next round of the competition in emphatic style, however admitted it wasn’t a score line he particularly enjoyed.
He said: “I thought we were brilliant today – really clinical, however it’s a difficult sort of score line for me to assess. I don’t think we should be having those sorts of score lines in women’s football to be honest.
“We tried to get out of it what we could, we knew minutes were important ahead of next week’s big game at Stoke.
“Credit to Leamington, they didn’t stop when a lot of teams would have. They kept going, right till the end.
“We played some great stuff as you would expect us to coming down here. It was one of those days, pleased with the result, pleased we’re into the next round but that shouldn’t really be happening.”
On his side’s ambitions in this year’s County Cup he added:
“Of course, we want to go as far as possible. It’s the County Cup, whoever goes on to lift the trophy will be the best team in the county and we think we’re more than capable of going deep in the competition.
“There are some good teams in the competition but it’s definitely a trophy we’re chasing this year, alongside the league which is our main priority.”
Next up for Wolves Women is another cup fixture, this time away to Stoke City in the National League Cup, 2pm kick-off on 24th November. We then return to Castlecroft on 1st December to continue our FA Cup journey as we face Fylde in the second round of the competition, 1pm kick-off.
24/11/19: Stoke City (A)
01/12/19: Fylde (H)
08/12/19: Birmingham & West Midlands (A)
15/12/19: Long Eaton United (H)
12/01/20: Lincoln City (A)
WOLVES: Conod; Bruton, Buck, Widdal; Holmes, Haynes, Dicken, Wilson, Bramford; J. Cross, Palmer.
Substitutes: Jones, S. Jennings, Anslow, Glover, Walker
LEAMINGTON: Grimshaw, Clarke, Williams, Abbott, Chapman, Mountford, Stevenson, Hassle, Braun, Doan, Pyne.
Substitutes: Whiltshire, Whinmill, Heer, Brazier.
By George Coombes