Sunday 21st December v Prestatyn Ladies (a)
Sunday 11th January v Pwllheli (a)
The Airfield, Chester Road
Broughton, Flintshire, CH4 0DR
v NORTHOP HALL 21ST OCTOBER
Airbus hold strong in 4-2 win over Northop Hall.
The afternoon really was a game of two halves as Northop Hall almost fought back to take something from an incredibly even match.
This was a match that tested the strength and character of the Airbus Ladies to show just how far they have come mentally in the last six months.
Arrowsmith opted for a 4-5-1 formation with Parry starting again after her strong performance against Denbigh in the friendly the week before. More than half the team changed from the week previous as many of the squad came back, making themselves available.
Airbus Ladies started off the stronger dominating the midfield and giving the Northop players no time on the ball. The away side were creating chances going forward with Smith and Hyndman working well down the flanks. Lees caused problems up front feeding off the balls coming from midfield. With Parry playing in a more defensive role it gave Williams and Goodall the opportunity to press further forward to support the lone striker.
Lees and Hyndman both had early chances but saw them comfortably saved by the goalkeeper. The home side were struggling to get out of their half and were creating very little. The away side got the first breakthrough as Williams and Lees played a neat one-two and Williams scored low and hard into the right hand corner. It was the least the Wingmakers deserved after making the stronger start.
The home side did not let going a goal down faze them and began to cause moments of pressure. The back four were equal to everything with Miles and Dolman working well to ensure nothing got past them. Friend was once again little more than a spectator as she was never tested in the first half.
Substitutions were being made by both teams leading to a few stilted periods of play but for the most it was a fluid game running smoothly throughout. It was Lees who doubled the lead half an hour into the game. The midfield all contributed as the ball was played from one side of the pitch to the other with Williams getting the assist as she played the ball through for Lees to finish off.
The away team remained in control without being able to add to the score line before half time.
The second half was a complete role reversal as Airbus changed their formation early on to 4-4-2 and lost control of their dominance in the midfield area. The pressure was coming at the Wingmakers in droves as Northop piled players forward in an effort to get a goal back.
When the goal did come it was a case of hit and hope by the midfielder. From 30 yards out she fired the ball goal ward and it seemed to lift as flew towards the goal. Gloves was left with no chance, even a keeper of six feet would have succumbed to watching the ball fly in.
It was a wakeup call for the away side as Northop continued to gain momentum and possession. It was now the Wingmakers who were on the back foot as the home midfield guided the ball from one wing to the other with patience and tolerance.
The Airbus defence were clearing everything that came upon them but the ball continued to come straight back at them with force.
It was against the run of play that Airbus gave themselves some clear air between them and the opposition. Parry played the ideal ball out to Hyndman on the wing, who took her player on and travelled into the area before striking the ball into the back of the net from a tight angle. The goal came at the perfect time for the Wingmakers and briefly allowed them to begin to gain control.
Northop had no intention of letting the game get beyond their grasp and continued to press forward at every chance. The match became very open as the midfield became a game of ping pong with the ball bouncing back between both sides.
Airbus calmed the play down and seemed to have settled for a 3-1 win but Northop Hall were having none of it. A quick break after Airbus had attacked saw the goalkeeper hit a long ball down Northop’s left wing. The winger got the flick on with the striker running on to pushing the ball past Miles and sweeping a dangerous ball into the area. Scammell’s positioning was all wrong and the striker stuck her foot out to connect for a simply volley to make it 3-2.
With the final ten minutes approaching the game was on tenterhooks as neither side looked like keeping the ball out of the back of their net. Northop kept pressing and pressing as the right wing was overloaded with quick nippy players. Arrowsmith dropped five players to the back in a final bid to ensure the win. The play was not pretty but Airbus were doing the job which was required of them and they ensured it was them that was walking away with the win only moments later.
Williams played a delicate chip over the top for Goodall who brought the ball down before seeing her effort saved, the goalkeeper, however, could only parry the ball and Hyndman followed in for an easy tap in to secure her second of the game and a great victory for the Wingmakers.
It was a sweet victory for the away side as they had to dig deep to grind out the win as they all refused to give up at any point. It was a fantastic feeling for them to walk off knowing they had never thought about giving up.
Airbus: Friend, Twohig, Scammell, Miles, Dolman, Smith, Goodall, Parry, Williams, Hyndman and Lees. Subs: Fuller, Shute, Prytherch and Thornton.