Workington Reds Ladies 1 – 2 Penrith Ladies

There was no fairytale end to an era as Workington Reds played their final match before rebranding as Workington Town Ladies.

They have found Penrith difficult opponents this season, losing to the Blues twice in the League and on another occasion in the Women’s FA Cup, conceding five goals in each of those matches.

It was a much closer contest in the Women’s Cumberland Cup Final played at Borough Park before a 400 crowd, but Reds were second best again.

An anxious Workington fell a goal behind in the eleventh minute and never really recovered. And, although they scored the goal of the match fifteen minutes from time, it was not enough to loosen Penrith’s grip on the game.

Holly Redmond was dispossessed on the edge of the area after being closed down by Jodie English and, although the latter’s shot lacked power, the ball bounced over the diving Laura Miller and into the net, giving Penrith a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.

Reds responded well and created opportunities for Bea Barbour and Hayley Bracken but neither shot troubled Hope Lawson in the Penrith goal.

A good run from Bracken down the right carved out another chance but Sarah Smith’s shot rattled the crossbar before the ball was hacked to safety.

Penrith finished the half strongly and Miller kept out an Abbie Forster header at the expense of a corner.

Player of the match, Carly Green, then saw a well struck shot from just inside the area rebound off the Reds crossbar before the ball was eventually cleared.

Eight minutes after the restart, Reds went further behind after conceding a penalty. Sophie Birkett was adjudged to have pushed English and the referee had no hesitation pointing to the spot. Green doubled the Blues advantage after converting the subsequent penalty.

Bracken’s chipped effort from distance was gathered by Lawson then Helen Wagstaff was narrowly wide as Reds tried to find a way back into the game.

That lifeline came in the seventy-sixth minute when Barber picked up the ball on the edge of the area. She rounded the ‘keeper and rolled the ball into the net to reduce the arrears with a well taken goal.

But it was Penrith who came closest to scoring a fourth of the evening. Forster hit a shot which had goal written all over it until Miller pulled off a magnificent reflex save, finger-tipping the ball over the bar.

There were no further opportunities and Penrith managed the closing stages well to emerge deserved winners.

CFA chair, Adam Pattison, presented the cup to injured skipper, Kim McCormick and Green before the champagne corks popped.

Workington Reds Ladies: Miller, Birkett, Foster, Redmond, Campbell, Donaldson, Wagstaff, Barber, Bracken, McGrady, Williams. Substitutes – Kemp, Hooper, Smith S, Ridgewell and Ivison.

Penrith Ladies: Lawson, Mason, Grisedale, Smith C, Dudson, Wharton, Robinson, Green, Forster, Harkness-Grant, English. Substitutes – McCormick, Gallacher, Nelson, Campbell and Fawkes.

Referee: Craig Bennison

Bookings: Bracken (Workington), Green (Penrith)

Attendance: 396

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