Image: Rugby Borough WFC

Rugby Borough WFC triumph over Wolves to clinch Birmingham FA County Challenge Cup

On Tuesday 14 May, Rugby Borough Women’s Football Club claimed victory in the Birmingham FA Women’s County Challenge Cup. Ebony Wiseman wore the captain’s armband at the Pirelli Stadium where the squad faced Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Lee Burch, the head coach of Rugby Borough, said post-match that the squad were “an hour late with a coach journey from hell”. This, however, did not deter the team; in just ten minutes, Lily Greenslade scored the first goal for Rugby giving them an early lead. Greenslade’s goal was followed by a classy shot from Lucy Whipp who ensured that Borough had a 2-0 lead by the break.

However, Wolves came back into the second half fighting; at 49 minutes they scored from outside of the 18-yard box with Lee Burch describing the goal scored by Tammi George as a “screamer”.

Later, at 84 minutes, a penalty was awarded to Wolves. Anna Morphet slotted the ball into the net, bringing the score level and sending the game to extra time.

Rugby Borough kept pushing and scored just three minutes after the Wolves penalty. Nicky Potts and Greenslade claimed a goal each meaning that the score sat at 4-3.

Unfortunately for Rugby, Wolves went on to equalise once more with Jade Cross getting the final all-important touch following a dangerous free kick launched into Borough’s box. The game was going to go to penalties.

Fans had witnessed eight goals, which is a testament to the quality of women’s football in the Midlands

Fans had witnessed eight goals, which is a testament to the quality of women’s football in the Midlands; clearly both squads were determined, resilient, and skilled.

A tense penalty shootout kept the crowd engaged. Rugby Borough scored every one of their penalties and Erin Foley, the side’s goalkeeper, remained calm. A missed penalty from Wolves and save from Foley meant that the penalty scoreline finished 4-3 to Rugby Borough, leading them to take home the trophy.

When asked about his emotions, Lee Burch said that he felt “joy for the group and everyone involved with [the club] this season”.

Lily Greenslade, whose brace earned her the Player of the Match award, said that the strong performance during the penalty shootout was down to the fact that the squad trains penalties “every week”.

Commenting on the game as a whole, Greenslade expressed how proud she is of her team, and when asked about the coach journey and comeback goals from Wolves she said: “I think when things go against you it makes you even more determined to push on and get the results.” Burch reiterated this message saying: “When things are thrown at us, we bounce back.”

“We’re the champions of Birmingham. What more would you want.”

Georgia Robert, a player for Rugby Borough WFC

Burch also spoke on the season as a whole stating that: “It’s been a great year and that [it’s] a great way to cap things off, a very Rugby Borough way to cap things off.”

The University of Warwick Women’s Football Club were in the stands for this match and supported their partner Rugby Borough. On Instagram they said: “We are super proud of our partners and we cannot wait to strengthen our relationship with their club in the future.”

The members of the university club were also pictured posing with Georgia Robert, a player in Rugby Borough’s squad who is currently featuring on BBC Three’s television show I kissed a girl. Robert summarised the emotions of the squad in two simple sentences. She said: “We’re the champions of Birmingham. What more would you want.”


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