Wigan win

Women's County League Trophy: Burnley Belvedere 1-1 Wigan Athletic Development (0-3 pen)

Dramatic late equaliser forces penalty shootout

Burnley Belvedere 1-1 Wigan Athletic Development
(Wigan win 3-0 on penalties)
Women’s County League Cup: Trophy final
Sunday 8th March
The County Ground, Lancashire FA HQ
Goalscorers: Evans (73), Ditchfield (90)

Wigan Athletic Development were victorious in the Women’s County League cup competition for the second consecutive season after their penalty triumph in today’s Trophy final.

In a hard-fought encounter, the Latics struck first late in the second half through Charlotte Evans.

But a late, late equaliser for Burnley Belvedere through captain Kirsty Ditchfield took the game to penalties.

Unfortunately for Belvedere, they missed all of their spot-kicks as Wigan scored theirs to clinch the Trophy.

It was a cagey affair with very few clear-cut chances, particularly during the first half.

Both sides launched several attacks but just couldn’t break each other down in that final third.

For the most part, Belvedere and Wigan could only manage shots off-target.

This included two good opportunities for the Latics, as Alex Cullen fired a free-kick over the bar, before Chelsea Bloor couldn’t get her shot on target following some good build-up play.

It was Belvedere who looked the more fired-up side after the break, as they had a few good chances on goal.

Chann Lingard’s thumping strike from just outside the area fell just wide, before Wigan ‘keeper Nicole Cassier had to be alert to save a well-hit effort by April Smith.

Cassier then drew pressure after racing off her line to clear ahead of Belvedere’s Louise Martin; her kick fell to Key Webb who directed a shot at goal but, thankfully for Wigan, Cassier was able to make the catch.

At the other end, after Evans and Faye Byrne saw close-range efforts blocked by green shirts, Wigan broke the deadlock.

A great attacking move saw Ellie Cleary race down the right into the box and put across a smooth low ball, which Evans was well-placed to steer home.

Belvedere should have been level immediately afterwards as Lingard did exceptionally well to round Cassier but, with the goal gaping in front of her, could only watch on in agony as her shot rolled just wide.

They did manage to find the net before full-time, though, as Ditchfield popped up on the right of the box in the final minute to fire home and send the Belvedere following into raptures.

Yet the penalty shoot-out did not go to plan for the home side, as two of their spot-kicks flew over the bar and the final one rattled the crossbar.

Wigan delivered from the spot to seal their Trophy victory and take home the silverware for the second year running.

Burnley Belvedere: Lord, Webb, Smith, J Walsh, Hart, McGuire, Cocker, Ditchfield, Jolly, Lingard, Martin
Substitutes: Kirby, Burrows, Bridge, K Walsh, Almond

Wigan Athletic Development: Cassier, Johnson, Burke, Collins, Bloor, Byrne, Jones, Cullen, Brown, Atherton, Lane
Substitutes: Butcher, Cleary, Williams, Evans, Graham