Norwich City Women (2) – QPR FC Women (2)

FA Women’s National League Division One (South-East)

Team: Melling, Curr, Searle, Owen, Blodgett, Lewin, Cohen, Hill, Stanley, Ward-Chambers, Petit

Subs: McCrea, Carolan, Hennessy, Nygaard-Parsons, Webster

Attendance: 5,941

On an overcast afternoon at Carrow Road, the sun eventually broke through.

Emily Hill provided the first attempt at goal, but the Rangers No.8’s shot from 20 yards evaded the target.

A minute or so later, Rachel Lawrence was set up by Ellie Smith, but the Canaries No.24’s strike was comfortably held by Nicole Melling.

At the other end, Courtnay Ward-Chambers fired just wide of the target.

Rangers took the lead after 17 minutes when Grace Stanley superbly curled the ball past Sarah Quantrill.

Six minutes or so later, the home side fashioned a shot across the face of the goal before going behind.

The Norwich equaliser came around the half-hour mark. The R’s keeper’s clearance found Rachel Lawrence 40 yards out and, looking up, she lobbed the ball into the empty net.

The Canaries took the lead in controversial circumstances. Nicole Melling’s brave close-range save left her injured in the process, but no foul was given, and the ball was eventually scrambled in by Ellie Smith!

Despite prolonged protests by the QPR players, the goal stood.

The R’s picked up their game again and Emily Hill’s header was cleared off the line following Kasha Petit’s corner.

With half-time looming, Rangers levelled the match. With the Norwich players seemingly standing still, Grace Stanley, on the half-volley, planted the ball into the back of the net.

After four added minutes, at half-time, it remained all-square.

Three minutes into the second-half, Eloise Morran sliced her effort just wide of the upright.

On 50 minutes, Grace Stanley set-up Courtnay Ward-Chambers who proceeded to shoot just past the post.

This was followed by Emilia Nygaard-Parsons replacing Zoe Cohen.

Ellie Smith was booked after fouling Grace Stanley, 35 yards out, as the R’s striker had headed for goal.

The next Rangers change came after 56 minutes when Laura Hennessy came on for Izzy Owen.

The Canaries came close to taking the lead when, following a scramble in the box, a Lauren Tomlinson effort was blocked on the line by Ellie Searle.

In the 68th minute, after Rangers had given the ball away, Natasha Snelling raced through to get one-on-one with Nicole Melling, which resulted in the R’s keeper making a very good save.

On 81 minutes, Steve Quashie brought on Ailish Carolan and Renai McCrea at the expense of Kasha Petit and Alice Curr respectively.

The final change was made four minutes later when Frankie Webster replaced Courtnay Ward-Chambers.

It was the away side who almost snatched the lead when Hope Strauss cleared the ball off the line after Ellie Searle had rounded the keeper.

Substitute Holly Kennard had the ball in the net for the home side in the 89th minute, but it was ruled offside.

Three minutes into the five-added, as a corner was about to be taken, Frankie Webster and Alice Parker were both booked after some pushing and shoving in the box.

Steve Quashie’s side then travelled to the Bedfont Sports Club to take on Actonians.

Steve Russell

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