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Match Reports


28 January 2024

Match Reports


28 January 2024

Barnsley FC Women dug in deep to produce a well-deserved 1-0 win against South Shields, courtesy of a late winner from Victoria Chincharo.

Barnsley displayed their attacking intent right from the opening minute, with an early through ball from Jodie Gregory finding its way through to strike-partner, Kirstie Nicholls, with her shot outside the box forcing South Shields 'keeper Scarlett Gowans to come out to deny the opportunity. Four minutes later, defender Melissa Turton-Burrell played a ball over the top which found Gregory once more in the box, although she was unable to cleanly strike the ball from this one and the 'keeper promptly collected the effort.

With Barnsley clearly the more impressive outfit in the opening minutes, the visitors began to display some attacking threat as the game approached the quarter of an hour mark. In the seventh minute, a South Shields free kick was played into the right side of the box, with midfielder Annece Legg put under pressure by a settled and solid Reds defensive line, and aiming her effort wide. Six minutes later, South Shields midfielder Elliott-Wood delivered a drilled shot from distance, with Reds' stopper, Ashleigh Ridsdel-Harrison, aiming to secure her sixth clean sheet of the season, jumping up to collect the ball, without ever really being threatened by the opportunity. And in the 20th minute, South Shields were awarded a corner kick which was hotly contested by Ridsdel-Harrison after it was adjudged that she had kicked the ball out of play. A resulting shot from the corner kick hit the post, before Barnsley captain Charley Evans produced an excellent defensive clearance to deal with any further threat.

With such a strong defensive display backing early attacking promise, it was only a matter of time before Barnsley would seize the opportunity to get through on goal. And it was after 27 minutes that Nicholls received the ball from Eliza Holland, before playing it into Kim Brown. She rounded one defender, and fired home, although her effort was denied by the flag, as it was deemed that Nicholls had been offside when she had touched the ball.

The Reds responded to this denial by displaying a continual attacking threat for the remainder of the half. In the 33rd minute, a well worked pass from midfield found Nicholls, whose subsequent shot went into the direct reaches of the goalkeeper as she followed through with the chance, resulting in a temporary stoppage in play.  Two minutes later, an incisive pass to the right flank by Brown found Holland, with an excellent cross being cleared for a corner kick. Nicholls saw her effort from the subsequent set piece headed off target.

The Reds had two more opportunities to break the deadlock before the first half drew to a close. In the 37th minute, a Brown effort from the edge of the box was hit just over the bar. And six minutes later, Holland produced a mesmerising run into the box, with her cross forcing a save from the opposition shotstopper, and ensuring that Barnsley went into the break goalless, but looking better placed to open the scoring in the next 45.


As the second half began, Gregory immediately produced a great attacking move into the box, before being brought down in a defensive battle. It was adjudged that there had been no foul play in the run up to this and play resumed. Four minutes later, Nicholls had a chance to break the deadlock when she produced a right footed shot from twenty yards out, forcing the South Shields 'keeper to use her feet to keep the effort at bay. A minute later, Ridsdel-Harrison again turned hero, responding to South Shields midfielder Elliott-Wood's free kick effort with a great lunging save before catching the ball.

In the 54th minute, a Holland cross found the feet of Gregory, who was only able to aim wide of the mark. The subsequent goal kick saw South Shields forward Sophie Greener through on goal, with an excellent last-ditch tackle from Victoria Chincharo keeping the scores level. And four minutes later, substitute Betty Cheetham responded well to a Nic Shaw cross, but her headed effort could not be directed goalwards.

The Reds continued to hold firm and were continually resilient against the South Shields forward line, with Turton-Burrell warranting particular mention for her 66th minute challenge on substitute Taylor acting as the last line of defence against a potential opposition opener. And this resilience paid dividends with an excellent attacking display in the last 20 minutes of the game. After 71 minutes, a cross from the right flank by Shaw forced a diving save from the South Shields 'keeper, with Chincharo's rebound being cleared off the line.

In the 73rd minute, Gregory produced a bursting run from the left flank, rifling a shot from just inside the box which rattled the crossbar. And nine minutes later, excellent footwork from Chincharo allowed her to pass once more to Gregory, whose shot from twenty yards out forced a trying save from the opposition stopper.

All of this served as a precursor to what served to be the pivotal moment of the match, in the 87th minute. A well-worked cross into the box resulted in an attacking melee, with Chincharo popping up at the back post to nod home a well-deserved winner, prompting scenes of feverish celebration. Barnsley then held firm for the remainder of the contest, to ensure their 10th win of the season, and another week on top of the NERWFL Premier Division table.


Barnsley: Ridsdel-Harrison, Rigby, Evans, Turton-Burrell, Wilson-Roberts, Shaw, Chincharo, Brown, Holland, Nicholls, Gregory

Subs: Cheetham, Kelly, Tieyah, Lunn, Marsh

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