Maidstone United Women (H) - 10th September 2023
By David Hansen
Margate Women return to Hartsdown Park on Sunday to start their campaign in the Vitality FA Cup against Maidstone in what's sure to be an exciting cup tie, with the winner taking their place in the 2nd qualifying round against either Glebe or Bromleians.
Focusing on the now however, Margate will be looking to build on their performance from last week's opening league game against Sittingbourne which ended in an entertaining 3-3 draw at the Jarman Solicitor Stadium, where goals from Paige Godden, Holly Enright and Esme Kew-Stroud managed to get the ‘Gate their first point of the season.
The squad now having their first 90 minutes under their belt, more focus can now be onto the performance and with the cup coming to Hartsdown Park putting on a good display in front of our home fans will be important as well as advancing to the next round.
Maidstone come into this game off a defeat, as they lost 4-0 at the Gallagher Stadium to fellow SECWFL Premier Division team London Road, meaning they will be out to redeem themselves in the cup and put their season back on track.
Kick off for the game is at 3pm and entrance to the ground will be available from the player’s gate next to the turnstiles.
Adults - £2
Concessions & U18’s - £1
U11’s - FREE
Women Storm Into Next Round of FA Cup
By David Hansen
Sunday afternoon saw the return of the FA cup to Hartsdown Park as Steph Meek and her squad managed to run out as 6-0 winners against Maidstone United under some seriously hot conditions for both teams to contend with.
It was a quiet start for both teams as they got used to the blistering heat, making creating chances early being very difficult. However, Margate took the lead in the 18th minute as a bombing run by Fleur Charman gave her the opportunity to get a ball into the area and the poor defender could only loop her clearance into the back of the net to give the ‘Gate the lead.
Margate began to get on top of the game following the 1st goal as winger Rebecca Niblett was able to deliver a low and fast cross to the feet of Esme Kew-Stroud whose powerful shot cannoned of the bar and Maidstone were able to clear their lines.
The only other significant chance of the half fell to Margate, as a very delicious looking corner found the head of skipper Nicole Adams, but she couldn’t direct the ball on target and double the ‘Gate advantage just before the end of the half.
The 2nd half started well for the ‘Gate as Niblett who was causing all sorts of problems down the right got a cross into the area and found the foot of Kew-Stroud who made no mistake this time in front of goal as she was able to pick out the far corner to double the hosts advantage on the hour mark.
With the team heading towards the 2nd qualifying round, Maidstone started to drop off and Margate would be able to add a 3rd goal as a massive Adams throw in evaded everyone, but Niblett was able to make contact with the ball and send it into the corner of the net, all but settling the tie in the 74th minute.
Margate weren’t happy with just 3 as they smelt blood. Godden was able to get herself on the scoresheet after an initial wonderful save from the Maidstone keeper, fell back to the feet of Godden who was able to tap it into an undefended net to make it 4-0 only 2 minutes after the 3rd goal.
A special mention to the Maidstone keeper who made a cracking save to deny substitute Abbie Luby’ fabulous strike on the volley as the keeper was at full stretch to send the ball away for a corner.
The resulting corner from Niblett was only cleared towards the edge of the penalty area and substitute Holly Enright made sweet connection with the ball sending into the top left corner past the outstretched Maidstone keeper to make it 5 in the 83rd minute.
Heading into added time Enright had time to double her tally for the day as she rose highest at the back post from another Niblett corner which seems to becoming a trend, to nod home from close range to finalise the scoreline for the day as the whistle went for full time, securing Margate’ passage into the 2nd qualifying round.
With a good turn out on the day the whole squad clapped the fans and the appreciation between team and fans was brilliant to see. Margate will now play Bromleians in the 2nd qualifying round as they managed to beat Glebe 5-0 away from home.
The ‘Gate will next be in action back In the SECWFL premier division where they will take on Woodcombe at Hartsdown park on the 17th of September with kick off scheduled for 3:00pm.
Wood, King, Kemp, Coltham-Lai, Charman, Adams ©, Kew-Stroud, Greetham, Speller, Niblett, Godden.
Mann, Scales, Ashby, Luby, Enright
Own Goal x1
Adams © x1