Newcastle Women drew a club record 22,134 spectators as they defeated Alnwick Town Ladies 4-0 in a fourth-tier match
In their first-ever encounter at St. James’ Park on Sunday, the Newcastle United Women’s team drew a club record of 22,134 supporters as they defeated Alnwick Town Ladies 4-0 in a fourth-tier FA Women’s National League Division One match. The crowd shattered the previous club record for a women’s game, which was set in January when 2,754 spectators watched them lose 1-0 to Ipswich Town Women in the Women’s FA Cup.
Amanda Staveley, a Newcastle part-owner, was in attendance to offer her support for the women’s squad, who nearly missed promotion after only losing two games all season. They have one game left in the season, but they will finish second to Liverpool Feds. The Lady Magpies got off to a quick start, with Kacie Elson driving down the left flank and crossing for Katie Barker, whose close-range shot sailed just over the crossbar.
Becky Langley’s team kept up the pressure early on, with Georgia Gibson dragging a long-range effort wide before Katy Stark saves another. As the first half progressed, Newcastle Women continued to look for an early goal, but Alnwick Town resisted the Lady Magpies’ efforts. The visitors countered through Melody Brooks, but Grace Donnelly held out the Alnwick left effort. back’s Katie Barker thought she had scored the opening goal for Newcastle Women at St. James’ Park moments later, but the linesman ruled it out for offside.
After a challenge between Elson and Stark, the Newcastle Women No.9 did get on the scoresheet after 28 minutes, pouncing on a loose ball in the box and neatly finishing into an empty net. Alnwick appeared to respond quickly, but Ellen Packham recovered brilliantly to make a wonderful last-ditch block when Michelle Stewart ran through on goal. After Elson was fouled in the box, the hosts increased their lead two minutes later, with captain Brooke Cochrane converting her penalty into the bottom corner.
Stewart was allowed in behind for the visitors as halftime approached, but the striker was unable to locate the target. On the stroke of halftime, Langley’s team almost added a third goal, but Stark was able to parry behind after Erin Nelson slipped past two players and delivered a dangerous cross. Langley’s team started the second half in the same enthralling fashion as the first, kicking towards the Gallowgate end. Gibson made it 3-0 only seconds after the restart, beating three defenders with ease and hitting low into the bottom corner.
Langley’s team would not rest on their laurels, and at the hour mark, Nelson was fouled in the box, resulting in another penalty. Despite having to retake the penalty the first time, Beth Guy made no mistakes the second time to give the Lady Magpies a four-goal advantage. The Lady Magpies looked for a fifth goal as the second half continued, but when Lauren Robson was found by Nelson’s cross-field play, she dragged her left-footed shot wide of the post.
Substitute Rosie Missen almost made it 5-0 with just five minutes remaining, but her looping header clipped the crossbar. In the final moments, Langley’s team kept the pressure on the visitors’ defense and were able to secure a professional and historic victory. Barcelona beat VfL Wolfsburg 5-1 in the first leg of their Women’s Champions League semi-final at Camp Nou last month, attracting a record 91,648 fans for a women’s match