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Women's Football News
F.A.Women's Cup - Road to the Final
Our northern tie pits a Northumberland County League club against opponents from the North East Regional League.
North Shields Juniors Girls Section was formed in 2002 (by a very old friend Neil Wedderburn), after identifying a need for structured coaching for girls in the area. The club began its drive to be one of the first in the area to achieve the coveted FA Charter Standard, forging a strong partnership with John Spence Community Sports College. The following year, the club fielded its first competitive squad at Under-12 age group, with several of that squad still at the club - although all can't be present as they are at universities ranging from Leeds through to Georgia in the USA!
After several years and quite a bit of success, the club eventually fielded its first Senior side in 08-09, made up ostensibly of 16-year-olds, and finished a credible fifth in a league of 12. Over the following years, although having several very talented players, sustained consistency has escaped the team with last season's fourth place being their best finish.
However this season has seen several changes with Rob Meldrum joining the coaching team to complement Steven Thrussell and manager Gordon Kipling. Rob has previously been involved with Gosforth Bohemians and the very successful Percy Main Ladies.
Last season saw the graduation of Steven's team from junior football and several of this squad are now First Team regulars - allaying any of Gordon's fears about protecting them from the senior game within seconds of their first training session! Several experienced players have also been recruited including a couple of "old lasses" returning from neighbours Whitley Bay.
North Shields have started the new season quite impressively and are unbeaten in the league, playing some excellent football.
A final massive thanks go to the club's new sponsors, Dougal and Railton, who have kindly sponsored their new strips, which the girls will be proudly wearing on Sunday.
Birtley Town were formed in 2004 as Pelton Newfield Ladies FC by Richie Brown and Mark Lumsden following a breakaway from Lumley Ladies.
The team played in the Durham County League until winning the league title and promotion to the North East Regional League Division One North in 2008, when they became Birtley Town Ladies FC in order to provide the girls with better on and off the field facilities. In the same year, five of the girls represented England CYP Under-16s.
However after missing out on promotion to the Premier Division by three points in 2009, the club lost a lot of its players due to the girls leaving for university.
This season, they are still competing in Division One North and are still managed by Richie Brown, assisted by player coach Holly Scott. From the club's formation in 2004, Lyndsey Brown and Chelsea Easton are still playing for the club while Georgia Telford, Kate Stephenson and Stacey Bonney have returned to the club after spells away. Birtley currently sit in mid-table having won two and lost two of their opening league games.
The match takes place at the Darren Persson Stadium and North Shields' good start to the season ensures that a fine match is in prospect.
North Shields (from): Abii Walker, Amber Phelps, Charlotte Rowley, Claire Laughton, Danielle Parker, Danielle Hooker, Danielle Clasper, Emma Burt, Jess Jenkinson, Jordan Kipling, Karen Wright, Kristie Fenwick, Laura Cannon, Laura Fairley, Lauren Brown, Laurel Davidson, Lauren Kavanagh, Rachel Martin, Rachel McGhie, Rachel Mitchell, Rebecca Ripley, Robyn Brown, Sarah Bennett, Sarah Taylor, Shaunna Thrussell, Stacey Naples.
Birtley Town (from): Holly Scott, Chelsea Easton, Lyndsey Brown, Georgia Telford, Rachel Simpson, Lydia Pegman, Dani Black, Leah Ramsbottom, Kate Stephenson, Sarah Forrester, Stacey Bonney, Sophie Johnson, Michaela McHugh, Brooke Wilkinson, Alice McGee, Sue Thorpe, Natalie Beswick, Nicola Beswick, Anne Unsworth.
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