On Saturday 18 February, Bootham Ladies’ Futsal Club – York played Loughborough for the second time in a month. The home side were looking to repeat their victory from the away game, and they were also looking to complete their second league double of the season and extend their winning run to 3 games.

Before the game Coach Chris presented captain Ellie Whittaker with her 50th appearance medal and Elena Rago with her 100th medal – both take their places on the clubs honours board.

Click here to see the Role of Honours board.

For the first time this season Coach Chris had virtually a full squad to pick from, and gave debuts to Nikki Brown and Lucy Grehan-Bradley, with recalls for Denva Coupland and Rowan Treagus.

Starting Line-Up: Ellie Whittaker (c), Katie Samson, Kimberly Samson, Charlotte Broad, Rowan Treagus.

Substitutes: Eleanor Walker, Suzy Collins, Nikki Brown, Lucy Grehan-Bradley, Colombe Mabboux-Fort, Elena Rago, Denva Coupland.

Bootham got off to the perfect start when Charlotte Broad back heeled the ball into the Loughborough net from close range. It got even better when Kimberly Samson scored from close range after a brilliant moving involving the whole side. Loughborough are a quality side and drew level with two goals, in what was turning out to be a classic with chances at both ends. Just before the break Nikki Brown smashed the ball into the roof of the net from close range to give the host a slender half time lead.

Half Time – Bootham Ladies’ Futsal Club – 3Loughborough Students Futsal Club Women – 2

Click here to see the images from the game.

The second half started with Bootham really pushing for the next goal, but Loughborough equalised early on and the game was tied once more. Rowan Treagus, who was having no luck in front of goal due mainly to the excellent Loughborough keeper, finally got her goal after poking home from close range. Once again Loughborough came back to level and both sides had chances to win the game in the final seconds, with Bootham having a shot cleared off the Loughborough line in the last 10 seconds!

Full Time – Bootham Ladies’ Futsal Club – 4 Loughborough Students Futsal Club Women – 4

Click here to watch the match highlights here.

Click here to watch the first half.

Click here to watch the second.

Player Of The Match – Nikki Brown – What a debut! From the moment she came on court she really did look right at home. Her aggression and forward runs caused the Loughborough defence all sorts of problems, and she capped it with a stunning strike. She still admits to not really knowing the game but she will be a superb signing when she gets up to full speed. Top performance and totally deserved!

In conversation after the game, captain Ellie Whittaker said, ‘That was an unreal effort from the ladies and one of the most intense games I’ve been a part of! At the start of the season, if you’d have said we’d take 4 points off Loughborough, we would have snapped your hand off. The fact we’re annoyed at not having all 6 shows how far we’ve come and how effectively we’ve strengthened and developed as a squad. The last 3 weeks have been so ridiculously good, and there’s such a good feeling amongst the girls. I am so excited to see what we can do next. Also a massive thank you to everyone who came to support, we hope you enjoyed it and we look forward to seeing you at the next game!’

In conversation, Coach Chris also said, ‘What an advert that was for ladies futsal – end to end, chances, fantastic saves from both goalkeepers, frame of the goal being hit, and both sides had amazing chances to win it in the last few seconds. We had 30 shots on target and honestly, we felt we should have won the game. The Loughborough goalkeeper was outstanding today, she made so many top quality saves, Rowan can’t believe she doesn’t have a hat full! That said, Katie also made several vital saves to keep the Loughborough players out.’

He went on to say, ‘I have said for weeks that if we put the best group of players on court, we can cause anyone problems and today just proved that. I was pleased at how well Nikki and Lucy fitted in, once up to speed both will be seriously good additions to the squad. When this group of players get used to each other, sort out some of the tactical parts of the game, they are going to be something special. We know we have a long way to go, but today was a big step along that journey. Over the last 3 games we have made people sit up and take notice on Bootham Futsal Club.’

He finished by saying, ‘A huge thank you to everyone who came and supported us today. If you missed it, you really did miss out. We have two more league games at home this season, and we would love more people to come along and support us. The sport is growing fast and we need the people of York to come and help us promote the message that York has a ladies futsal team.’

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