York School Girls u14s ESFA Cup vs Wirral

… and into the ESFA Champions Cup

  • Date:      6 October 2023
  • Kick off:  7:30pm
  • Venue:    Selby Town stadium
  • Versus:   Wirral School Girls U14s
  • Referee:  Ben Anderson


Thank you Selby Town FC (and Scott) for arranging the venue (at such short notice). 

Very welcoming, great hospitality.   

A great place to play and wonderful experience for the girls!

They even decorated the changing rooms in the right York and District colours:


Squad news:

A tough week for the girls this week with both illness and injury taking their toll:

  • Injuries to Grace – get well soon!  Molly just returning from few weeks out was easing back into play.
  • Illness however was throughout the squad: Erin was ill and unable to play; Sophie and Leila had been off school during the week

So an under-par ‘fitness-wise’ team took to the pitch with Lucy in goal; and Izzy drafted in at right-back for the first half.

An early photo-call with our kit sponsor Air Supply Ltd gave the girls a good chance to feel the grass under their feet and and acclimatise to the stadium.

A long journey for the Wirral team saw a later kick-off time of 7:30pm  Wirral won the toss and elected to play into the breeze from the south.

In a thrilling first half of football, York and District Schools faced off against Wirral Schools in a highly anticipated matchup. The game was marked by exciting play from both sides, but it was ultimately clear that York and District had a slight edge.

First half:

York started the game with Lucy guarding goal, while Izzy took the right back role alongside Aria, Sophie, and Holly. The first few minutes showcased the attacking prowess of York as they swiftly switched the ball from the left to the right, earning themselves an early corner. Poppy took a quick shot from Rhiannan’s corner, but Wirral’s keeper made a solid save, denying York the opening goal.

The following minutes were characterised by end-to-end action, with both teams displaying their skills, yet neither could break the deadlock. In defence Aria and Sophie’s strength and determination to win the ball were supported by Izzy and Holly working hard in their defensive wing positions to prevent any time or space for Wirral – and to push forward in attack. Even a well practiced slide tackle or two were in evidence!

Eleanor attempted a long-range shot for York, narrowly missing the target. In response, Wirral launched a counterattack, resulting in a wide shot.

Rhiannan on the right for York was showing great promise, and Eleanor breaking into attack from midfield had another close attempt, just over the bar. Wirral’s counter-attacks were equally effective, with Lucy making an important diving save for York.

The 15-minute mark saw York on the attack again, with Poppy displaying her magical footwork to set up another chance for Rhiannan. However, Wirral managed to withstand the pressure, and a quick attack down York’s inside right led to Wirral’s opening goal. It was a lovely shot that left Lucy with no chance, giving Wirral a 1-0 lead (21mins).

York’s defence, tightened up and showed resilience despite the Wirral attack’s speed and tenacity. They worked cohesively to keep any further score.

The second quarter saw Wirral maintaining pressure on York’s defence, with several corners, but York’s backline defended admirably. Leila and Abbie worked tirelessly to relieve the pressure and regain and retain possession. Katherine became a huge presence winning balls and setting up attack after attack both down the left hand side with Lacey – but also switching play to Rhiannan.

Holly made a crucial intervention – headed clearance – to break up a Wirral’s attack, giving Poppy and Hattie to work an opportunity to break away the length of the pitch, but the Wirral keeper made a comfortable save. Sophie also made a sliding interception from a dangerous pass from Wirral’s right flank.

As the half progressed, York started to look more likely to equalize, with Hattie and Abbey making key contributions. Katherine joined the attack from midfield, working hard and looking sharp.

At halftime, the score stood at 0-1 in favour of the visitors.

Second half

In the second half, Izzy took over in goal for York, and Molly coming on to take the right back position – immediately looking assured and solid as the Wirral attack continued. The second half had started with great intensity from both sides, and Poppy took an early shot just missing the target.

The game became more evenly balanced, with both teams pressing hard for a breakthrough.

York’s high press though caused particular problems for Wirral, leading to an unfortunate own goal. A back pass to the Wirral keeper deflected off her boot and spun into the net, levelling the score at 1-1.   Come on York!

As the game entered its final quarter, both teams displayed sharp play. Tension built in the stands as the match reached its climax. Sophie and Aria made a crucial interventions to thwart attacks from Wirral.

Izzy made a fantastic fingertip save to deny York’s right-sided shot, pushing it behind for a corner. The corner was well defended and collected by Holly, who initiated another attack down the left.

The game opened up as players’ legs tired, but Wirral, without any substitutes, had to work hard to withstand York’s pressure. Poppy delivered a superb ball over the top, leading to a break down the right wing for Lacey, a neat ball back into Poppy saw a high shot but narrowly missed the target.

With a change to three at the back for York, the pressure was relentless, but Wirral’s keeper was equal to the task. A sharp shot on the turn from Hattie was sent straight into the keeper’s arms.

The game ended in a 1-1 draw, with both teams showing great determination and skill. It was a hard-fought match, with York creating numerous chances, and Wirral proving dangerous on the break. The crowd witnessed an exciting encounter that highlighted the talent of both teams.


Despite their impressive performance (and at times domination of the game), York was unable to convert their numerous chances into goals. The girls’ determination and strength couldn’t quite tip the balance in their favour to secure the win. The match ultimately ended in a 1-1 draw, a testament to the resilience and skill of both teams.

In summary, (and despite a number of injuries and illnesses this week) the girls listened attentively to their coaches’ instructions, played well in defence, were full of running and desire in midfield and were sharp and dangerous in attack. They demonstrated a good work rate, creating many opportunities but couldn’t break the deadlock to clinch the victory.

It was a hard-fought and exciting game that left fans applauding the efforts of both teams.  Well done girls!

Coaches comments:

  • What a wonderful venue for the girls to play in!
  • Lots to build on and still working out best positions and formation
  • The girls not only listened to what the coaches had to say – but put it into practise on the pitch.
  • We showed great pace in attack.
  • Can’t wait for the next one!

Next game:

Away match at Barnsley – Dorothy Hyman Stadium, Cudworth. S72 8LH

Whatthreewords: address

20 October

  • 6.15pm meet up for 7pm kick off

Surface:  astro/grass

Thanks again to our other team sponsors:

York squad:

Thank you girls! a good result and great team performance …

Lucy Izzy Sophie Aria Erin Holly Molly Lacey Dasha Leila Eleanor Abbie Poppy Rhiannon Hattie Grace Katherine


*** Volunteers required for the next match report please? Any budding sports journalists? ***

WhatsApp: David Anderson or email:  anderson.david@btinternet.com