Hatters Fall Short As Chester-Le-Street Inflict First Home Loss In 12 MonthsStockport County 0-2 Chester-Le-Street
After a month of pre-season, a newly-promoted County team were finally able to get their season underway with a home tie against last season’s third place side, Chester Le Street Town. The visitors made the long trip down from the North East to Stockport Sports Village to play a Hatters team in fine form. The girls in blue having won all but one of their pre-season fixtures.
A number of changes were enforced for County, most notably Sophie John in midfield, as the Hatters set-up in a slightly different shape. Chloe Williams started in goal, with Wilson, Hayes, Hancock and Carrington as the back line. Gill Munro, Chaneece Reeves, Hanifa Douglas, Beth Scholey and Masa Butler made up the midfield while Chloe Mapp lead the line up top.
The Hatters started on the back foot, with Town pressing high up the pitch and reducing any space for County to break. The early pressure led to some nervy spells at the back, with the visitors eventually breaking through as a result of a defensive mixup between Williams and Hayes, Havery making no mistake and tucking it home from close range.
County looked stronger after the goal, pushing up the pitch down the wings with pace as Wilson, Butler and Carrington cause problems for the opposition full-backs but nothing came of it, as County couldn’t pull one back before the break.
HT | COUNTY 0-1 CHESTER-LE-STREET
County started the second half as they started the first, on the back foot. The opposition continued to press high, making it difficult for the Hatters to make any impact on the Town goal.
The visitors the doubled their lead from a corner as Williams made two excellent saves before the ball fell to Katie Ellison who put the ball in the back of the net.
The game seemed to fall away from County after the second goal, not helped by injuries to Chloe Mapp and Hanna Wilson which resulted in them playing shortened games – the introduction of Elle Charnley added some spark up top but it was too little too late for a County side playing their first game in the National League in four years.
The dying seconds of the game saw County’s Masa Butler see red for an altercation in the Chester-Le-Street penalty box, ruling her out of the next three fixtures for the girls in blue.
STOCKPORT COUNTY 0-2 CHESTER-LE-STREET
Stockport Sports Village
POTM: Abbie Carrington