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Enfield Town 2 Norwich City 3
Norwich City took three vital FAWPL South East Division One points with a fine 3-2 away win over Enfield Town.
In an exciting and well contested match, City trailed twice in the first half with Aimee Durrant levelling both times before she set up the winning goal shortly after the break. Norwich then had to withstand considerable pressure from the home team before celebrating just their third league win of the season.
The match started in dramatic fashion with Enfield opening the scoring in the first minute; Holly Brandon got clear on the right and pulled the ball back for Katherine Long to finish past Eilish Brogan. The home side continued to threaten, especially from corners, with Millie Daviss preventing an Enfield second on nine minutes with a clearance off the line.
Norwich had their first opportunity on 20 minutes when Durrant crossed inches ahead of Charlotte Broad on the far post but the equaliser came on 27 minutes after a sustained spell of attacking. Jodie Drake played a lovely through ball for Durrant to run on to and nod past Kerrie Marlborough.
Play became end-to-end as the half developed. Long had been denied by Brogan's save just before the leveller, whilst Natasha Snelling hit a lofted effort inches over at the other end. Two very similar goals marked the end of the first period. First, Sheryce Smith put Enfield ahead with a fine free kick from wide on the left whilst Durrant levelled for City from a similar distance, though from the opposite side.
Norwich, now with the strong breeze behind them, started the second half on the front foot and it was the dangerous Durrant with a run down the right and low cross who set up Brydie Siryj to convert for her first goal for City on her debut. Norwich continued to dominate and Siryj nearly added a fourth, placing a shot wide from close range.
Enfield made changes and started to exert more pressure in search of an equaliser. However, despite some dangerous crosses and set pieces, the visiting defence held firm and Brogan dealt confidently with efforts from distance. One final block from the excellent Sacha Diston in central defence and a catch from a free kick by Brogan saw Norwich claim the spoils after a very good team display.
Enfield remain in eighth place with 19 points whilst Norwich still have a lot to do to escape eleventh place, but with games in hand on teams above and the confidence gained from a fine performance in this match, they will hope to climb the table in the final months of the season.
Kerrie Marlborough, Sheryce Slater, Cally Browne, Danielle Smith, Claire Ford, Holly Brandon, Daisy Jenkins, Nuala McKevitt, Katherine Long, Lisa Kline, Regan Coleman. Subs: Sophie Gardiner, Andrea Vivas, Kelly Cooper, Beth Demery.
Eilish Brogan, Millie Daviss, Eliza McDonald, Grace Parker, Sasha Diston, Emily Moerkerk, Aimee Durrant, Jodie Drake, Charlotte Broad, Natasha Snelling, Brydie Siryj. Subs: Paige Shorten, Summer Ward, Chelsea Garrett, Hayley Turner.
(Report by Patrick Higgins)
Photos by www.jamesprickett.co.uk:
(top) A grounded Natasha Snelling is up against Nuala McKevitt and Regan Coleman
(middle) Claire Ford slides in to tackle Brydie Siryj
(bottom) Andrea Vivas under pressure from Grace Parker
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