Penalty heroics help Whites into FA Cup 2nd Round.
Vitality Women’s FA Cup First Round Proper
Leeds United Women 1 (Brown 87’ pen)
Brighouse Town 1 (Harris 78’)
Leeds United win 1-0 on penalties
Leeds: Simpson (GK), Hindle, Hamill, Bradley-Aukland, Smart (C), Whitham, Danby, Smith, Ellis (Bass 95’), Woodruff, Brown: Unused subs: Handy (GK), Robson, Underdown, Price.
Brighouse Town: Flaherty (GK), Bamforth (Watson 60’), Greene, Legge (C), Dean, Cass, Greene, Kemp, Williams (Harris 55’), Sowerby, Wilcock (Clayton 109’).
Venue: So-Trak Stadium (Tadcaster Albion AFC)
Referee: Rob Mitchell
Booked: Wilcock (Brighouse)
Leeds United Women advanced in the FA Cup in the most dramatic fashion, knocking out higher-league Brighouse Town on penalties.
Carrie Simpson was the Whites hero in the shoot-out, saving three penalties, with Rebekah Bass the only player to find the back of the net from the spot, meaning Leeds edged the shoot-out 1-0.
A close-fought game was expected and that is exactly what followed, a fiery and scrappy start saw both sides struggle to get a hold of the game in the early stages.
Brighouse had the first chance when Lauryn Wilcock latched onto a long ball and rounded Simpson, but Cath Hamill got back on the line to block her shot and keep the score 0-0.
That scare seemed to spark Leeds into action as the Whites went on to dominate the first half. Hamill was involved again at the other end but saw her header cleared off the line.
Macey Ellis then saw her dangerous cross claimed by Becky Flaherty, before the Brighouse keeper had to be alert again to save from Danielle Whitham minutes later.
The Whites should have been in front before half time, Ellis and Olivia Smart both had glorious openings but blazed over.
HALF TIME: Leeds United Women 0-0 Brighouse Town
The visitors came out brightly after half time and had the first chance of the second half as Drew Greene shot wide on the turn.
Leeds were causing Brighouse problems from set pieces and had two glorious chances to take the lead. First, a free header for Sophie Bradley-Aukland and then a half-volley from Abbie Brown, both blazed over from six yards out.
It was the visitors who took the lead 11 minutes from time when substitute Ella Harris’ cross from the right found it’s way into the back of the net.
The Whites showed great character to respond though and were awarded a penalty when Brown had her shot blocked by a Brighouse hand. Brown stepped up herself, keeping her cool to send the keeper the wrong way and send the tie to extra time.
Both sides pushed for a winner in extra time but neither could find that telling moment of quality, meaning the tie would have to be decided on penalties.
Leeds keeper Simpson was the hero against her former side, saving three spot kicks. Bass the only Leeds player to convert but that was enough for a 1-0 win thanks to Simpson’s heroics.
The Whites will find out their 2nd Round opponents on Monday 14th November at 12:30pm.
FULL TIME: Leeds United Women (1) 1-0 (0) Brighouse Town