Words: Ben Dakin; Picture: John Shirras
CHORLEY’S FA Cup adventures will continue for another round after the Magpies returned from Shropshire with an impressive 4-0 victory over The New Saints.
On paper it was a fairly even contest – the home team sitting mid-table in the Midlands section of the FAWNL Division One.
It took a good ten minutes before either side managed to settle into any kind of rhythm, and it was Chorley who found their feet first, with Lisa Topping making her presence known in the home side’s box.
On 14 minutes Chorley’s Beth Donoghue ran down the left and put in a great cross, TNS can’t say they weren’t warned as just two minutes earlier she had done exactly the same, but this time Rebecca Kemp was there to hit the ball home.
With Hannah Brindle driving forward from left back and linking up with Donoghue, the number nine’s runs down the left and into the penalty area were to be a recurring theme throughout the game.
It was this combination which led to the Chorley’s second goal five minutes before half time. Donoghue received a beautifully weighted pass from Brindle and took it all the way, slotting it past the keeper with ease.
Chorley had all the opportunities in the first half, including a 30 yard thunderbolt from skipper Walker which rattled the crossbar. The only time keeper Rachel Darbyshire was called into action was from a solitary corner the home side won late in the half.
The coach’s team talk had the desired effect on the home side as they came out looking to cut the deficit and came close early on with Darbyshire having to pull off a double save to keep her clean sheet. But, just as TNS looked like grabbing a foothold in the game, Chorley got their third. Donoghue again unlocking the defence on the left. This time her cross was met by sub Ellie Mills whose volley beat the keeper to her left.
The home side seemed unable to mark Donoghue, and after beating a high offside, she found herself on her own 30 yards out, with just the keeper to beat. This was easily done, bringing her personal tally to two goals and two assists for the game.
Despite a match winning display by the forward, it was a solid team performance with every player looking sharp and hungry. There’s something about cup games that bring the best out of Chorley.
Chorley: Darbyshire; Fenton (Mills, 46′), Brindle, Searson, Topping (Wood, 75′), Kemp, Vella, Donoghue, Rotheram (Doak, 75′), Worth, Walker (c).
HT 0-2 / FT 0-4
Goals: Kemp (14’), Donoghue (39’, 80’), Mills (65’)
Next up: Accrington visit Victory Park in the LFA Challenge Cup quarter-finals on Sunday; £3 adults, £1 concessions & FREE u-12s/season ticket holders.