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Blues and Lady Pies draw blank
 Women's Football News 20 Apr 2015
Blues and Lady Pies draw blank - 20 Apr 2015 - Women's Football NewsBirmingham City 0 Notts County 0
Both sides are still looking for their first league win of the season after battling out a stalemate in a feisty affair at the Autotech Stadium. 
Carly Telford's late penalty save from Remi Allen proved to be the main point of a match in which defences dominated and the two teams largely cancelled each other out, although the injury-hit Blues created more chances in the latter stages of the game.
County made the quicker start with Alex Greenwood shooting wide following a corner and Ellen White bringing out a save from Rebecca Spencer after intercepting a pass out of defence.
Birmingham were missing several key players from their starting line up and took a while to settle but did go close when Jess Carter whipped in a good cross from the left but Melissa Lawley could only direct her header wide at full stretch.
The flow of play was not being helped as both sides committed a series of fouls in what was becoming an increasingly niggly game. It was no surprise that the next two main opportunities both came from free kicks, first for County after Rachel Williams had been brought down by Kerys Harrop just outside the area. Greenwood stepped up and her low shot brought out a good diving save from Spencer.
At the other end, Jo Potter lifted a free kick well over the bar from a similar range and another kick was not fully cleared by the County defence and Harrop volleyed over.
Birmingham were dealt another injury blow at the start of the second half when Alex Windell limped off to be replaced by Emily Simpkins and just before the hour mark, Greenwood was forced off following a clumsy challenge from Coral-Jade Haines.
Spencer made a smothering save as Dunia Susi threatened to break through, before the game finally exploded into life in the last twenty minutes.
Danielle Buet had a long range shot held by Spencer, with Birmingham hitting back and creating the best move of the game so far, Potter exchanging passes with Emily Westwood before her low shot was saved by Telford.
Things began to open up at last and Simpkins' pass played in Haines who burst into the area but the young striker drove her shot over the bar.
With ten minutes left, Birmingham were handed a great opportunity to win the game. Allen was brought down in the area by Fern Whelan's challenge and the home side were awarded a penalty. Allen picked herself up to take the kick but Telford dived to her left to pull off an excellent save and keep her side on level terms.
Susi drove a shot wide at the other end whilst another Blues attack saw an overlapping Simpkins get into the area, where her deflected shot hit the side netting. There was a scare for the home side late on when an O'Sullivan centre was not held by Spencer under pressure but Carter was well placed to clear and the stalemate remained until the final whistle. 
Birmingham City: Rebecca Spencer, Alex Windell (sub Emily Simpkins 47mins), Jess Carter, Meaghan Sargeant, Aoife Mannion, Kerys Harrop, Melissa Lawley, Remi Allen, Emily Westwood, Coral-Jade Haines, Jo Potter. Subs not used: Sophie Baggaley, Charlie Wellings, Abbey Leigh Stringer, Cristina Torkildsen.

Notts County: Carly Telford, Sophie Walton, Amy Turner, Danielle Buet, Alex Greenwood (sub Fern Whelan 59mins), Laura Bassett, Leanne Crichton, Rachel Williams (sub Fiona O'Sullivan 53mins), Ellen White, Dunia Susi, Aileen Whelan (sub Jess Clarke 53mins). Subs not used: Juliana Draycott, Sophie Bradley, Laura-Jayne O'Neill.


(top) Alex Greenwood shields the ball from Melissa Lawley
(middle) Carly Telford and Sophie Walton keep Coral-Jade Haines at bay
(bottom) Jess Carter makes an important clearance

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