League cup holders Harrogate Railway Ladies started their defence of the cup today at home against League one table toppers Gledhow with a deserved 3-0 win.
It was obvious within 6 minutes that Gledhow were intent on playing a high line and go for the off side trap, this proved effective as Railway were constantly caught out with every break they made in the first 15 minutes. Gledhow managed to get forward themselves on six occasions in the first half hour but were not good enough to beat rails back four of, Ali Purvis, Jenny Huddleston, Kat Purvis and Sandra Clarke who all had a great game.
It was on the 34th minute when player of the match, Rachel McDonald put a perfect pass through for Nicola Hadley to beat the offside trap and go one on one with the keeper and she coolly slotted the ball past her into the bottom corner, 1-0. Railway seemed to have the offside game worked out by now and 4 minutes later, yet again Rachel found the pass to allow Emma Elliot around the back and drive in a fine strike to make it 2-0.
The second half should have been a rout for Railway with 2 early subs made it gave a new formation to Rails team and instantly Jodi Hodgson set up 3 great opportunities for Rails forwards who seemed to then go completely blank in front of goal. After 60 minutes played Railway should have been 5 or 6 up but it just wouldn’t go in, Gledhow kept on the offside game and did create 2 or 3 shots on rails goal but as they got tired the mistakes crept in and on the 75th minute Dee Swales on the right managed to beat the trap and finished her run with a strike from 22 yards out, 3-0.
Railway were not as good today as in the last three weeks up front but a win they got, and so on they go to the next round, well-done to them all.
Next week the Railway Ladies are away to Brighouse in the league and this is a must win game if they are to keep there title chances up.