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Women's Football News
Blyth Town Lions are celebrating wining the Northumberland County Women's League at the first attempt after successfully rising through the ranks of junior football.
The team, which is managed and coached by Clive Robertson and Keith Watson, is made up of players aged from 16 to 19-year-olds from Northumberland and Tyneside and all have a passion for the game and the will to be the best they possible can be, and go as far as they can within the ladies game. Laura Gunn is the team's captain and striker Hannah Smith has scored an impressive 53 goals so far this season.
The new season was a new challenge but with the same aim, to progress to the next league. The girls kicked off, after a successful pre-season, with a very positive attitude and a view to win the league as quickly as possible.
The girls soon realised that it would be far more physical, however it did not stop them winning the first nine games up to Christmas with 64 goals scored and only 2 against. The team play attractive passing and moving football with good work ethics and this stood them in good stead as they sat on top of the league.
The title deciders would happen towards the end of the season, but first the Lions were drawn against Newcastle United Reserves team in the Northumberland County Cup quarter final. This would be the greatest test of the season as this team sit four leagues above in the Women's FA Premier Reserves League.
This did not deter the Lions who, on a very blustery day, pushed Newcastle into extra time and then penalties where they were unfortunately eliminated. The Lions certainly deserved more out of the game and had the better chances. Lesson learnt and it proved to the girls how far they had come in a very short time.
The League, Cup and Northumberland Futsal cup were all still to play for. The Futsal Cup was first and after five weeks of competition, the Lions faced a final against Newcastle East End Ladies. This ended with a 5-1 win for the Lions and progression to the Regional Finals in Leeds in June 2014.
Three games through January and February with closest rivals Newcastle East End and Ashington were to be the key games of the season. East End were dispatched, which left an away game against Ashington who sat in second place. This would certainly be a tough game as Blyth had beaten Ashington the previous week at home in the League Cup, and knew they would come out fighting.
A very physical game was played out in front of BBC cameras, who were there as part of Kate Adie's documentary based on her book about women on the home front during the First World War. This was a great profile for the girls, and a 3-1 win for Blyth ensured the league was won in style. Cue celebrations!
Part two of the treble complete, sandwiched with a semi final cup win against Newcastle East End, ensured the girls are in pole position to win three trophies in their first season.
Two League games, one cup final and a Futsal regional final remain as well as a trip to Spain where the girls will be taking part in the Costa Blanca Cup in April. Potentially this could be a great season and the girls are already looking forward to competing in the North East Regional League Northern Division next season.
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