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Women's Football News
Durham Women 1 (Hardy 81) Watford 2 (Wilson 9,45)
A frantic last ten minutes at New Ferens Park saw Durham give Watford a run for their money despite losing 2-1 to the away side.
Two goals from Jo Wilson gave Watford an early lead but Yasmine Hardy scored late on, which then saw Durham push for an equaliser before Watford saw out the game for their first victory of the season.
The opening stages of the match saw the game open evenly with both sides having plenty of possession of the ball and attacking on goal. Durham were playing strongly and they took a killer blow just before the ten minute mark when Ellie Christon's back pass allowed Wilson through unmarked to make the score 1-0.
Despite going a goal behind, Durham continued to apply pressure and were playing lovely pieces of football that saw Beth Hepple making the most of space down the left to power forward and win her side a corner.
This was an open game and Watford had a chance to double their advantage in the 22nd minute when Sarah Wiltshire darted round both Jen King and Lauren Jordinson before Danielle Hill comfortably made the save.
Fantastic play from King saw her keep possession of the ball in the defensive and the defender sent the ball down the left flank for Durham to attack and apply pressure on the Watford defence. Durham had their best chance of equalising just before the half hour mark when Zoe Ness' long range effort was spilled by Lauren Davey and almost allowed Stacy Crooks an effort on goal but she reacted quickly to gather the ball.
The Wildcats were playing some of their best football so far this season but they were dealt a killer blow on the stroke of half time as Wilson got her second of the game when Wiltshire squared the ball across the box to the striker who made no mistake.
Durham were forced into a substitution before the second half started after captain Caroline Dixon was injured at the end of the first half, she was replaced by Rosie Young.
The home side started brightly with Stacy Crooks threading the ball through to Ness whose cross back into the box hit the side netting. Durham continued to string a number of chances together and the introduction of Young provided a spark for the Wildcats.
It was end-to-end action between the two sides and Wilson nearly had her hat-trick in the 55th minute when she was sent through on goal only for Hill to stand up tall and get her left foot out to save the striker's shot.
The best chance of the second half fell to Ness when Crooks had been pushed out wide to the left before fooling the Watford defence to cut back inside and cross into the box. It was met by the Scotland Under-19 international whose first time shot narrowly went over the bar.
The Wildcats were rewarded for their hard work in the 81st minute after a strong period of pressure from the home side. Watford failed to clear the ball from the penalty area and it was Ness who headed the ball out to substitute Yasmine Hardy whose powerful right footed shot sailed into the back of the net.
The final few minutes of the game saw Durham franticly try to grab an equaliser with a corner but Watford held out to take all three points.
Durham Women: Danielle Hill, Ellie Christon, Lauren Jordinson, Jen King, Becky Hanratty (sub Victoria Linsley 74mins), Caroline Dixon (sub Rosie Young 45mins), Beth Jennings, Stacy Crooks (sub Yasmine Hardy 80mins), Zoe Ness, Beth Hepple, Jess Round.
Watford: Lauren Davey, Chloe Gunn, Ellie Butterwick, Bonnie Horwood, Renee Hector, Josie Green, Sarah Wiltshire, Kate Natkiel, Jo Wilson (sub Magda Mosengo 84mins), Cally Rowell, Emma Beckett.
(Report by www.fawsl.com)
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