Back to winning ways for the Dragons as they confirm their future in the Southern Premier League

It was going to be hard to match the atmosphere and attendance of last week due to it being Mother’s Day and the rugby on in the Capital, but that didn’t stop the loyal supporters turning up for our match against Plymouth Argyle.

With no local football clubs available to be mascots for the day, it was a great chance to allow those regular younger supporters the opportunity to walk out with their heroes as the familiar Cardiff anthem of Yma O’ Hyd echoed from the PA system.

The game started well for Cardiff with a combination of Jessie Taylor and Tianna Teisar asserting their presence on the right wing with Tianna running at the Plymouth defence at every opportunity she got.

Libby Piggott then joined in the duo as they seemingly identified the left of Plymouth as a weakness as the three of them combined once again before Piggott’s ball into the box was dealt with by the Argyle keeper.

Plymouth had a chance to create an opportunity of their own but their free kick came to nothing and it was back with Tianna Teisar who was weaving her way through the Plymouth team like a knife through butter. The Plymouth players were struggling to cope with Tianna and it was after the 3rd foul the ref awarded a free kick in her favour.

The chances continued for the Dragons as Aadland got in on the action but her shot straight at Lily Felgate failed to trouble her. Plymouth had their opportunities at this point too, but like us, they couldn’t finish their chances.

It was on 36 minutes when we finally got the ball in the back of the net, Jessie Taylor with a great ball in from the right which was put on a plate for Ruby Scahill to slot home for the Dragons.

The Dragons had one more half chance before half time, again coming from Ruby Scahill, and the deficit also woke Plymouth up as they pushed forward too but the efforts were matched by the solid back line of Thierry-Jo Gauvain and Caitlin Williams.

The second half started and neither side created any noteworthy chances early on, the first chance of the half falling to Scahill who shot straight into Felgate’s arms.

This started the fire in the Dragons belly as they were determined to add to their one goal cushion and just on the hour Ingrid Aadland had a shot which was blocked before Lloyd had a shot which went straight across the face of goal.

Manager Fern Burrage-Male sensed a second goal was closing in but the one goal advantage left us in a dangerous position so she introduced debutant Lily Billingham, Emily Richards and Amy Long who came on for Aadland, Teisar and Taylor.

Lily Billingham made an instant impact running down the left wing charging at the Plymouth defence, giving them another headache as she whipped the ball in to Emily Richards whose shot failed to trouble the Plymouth keeper. The Plymouth attack were straight at us at the other end trying to snatch a draw from the game and Ellie Sara tried her luck to chip O’Sullivan but the shot was over the bar.

The last 10 minutes were end to end, the Dragons had further chances to score with another mazy run by Lily Billingham which was straight across the front of the goal, then Charlotte Whitmore charged at the Dragons defence who cleared out for a corner, which resulted in a nervy few minutes as this followed by two further corners from the Pilgrims.

On 90+3 minutes, Ellie Sara equalised, a great pass from the Plymouth midfield cleared Ellie Sara who rounded O’Sullivan and tapped the ball into an empty net.

The supporters in the crowd could’ve felt deflated and let down coming away from the game with a draw but as the Dragons kicked off from the re-start their resident drummer drummed into action and spurred on the supporters to cheer on the team for one last push.

It was there in the dying moments that the Dragons were adamant not to give up and pushing forward, Emily Poole was fouled just over the halfway line. Up stepped Chloe Lloyd, our dead ball specialist, she whipped the ball towards the box, but it fell short and was collected by Tia Asker who was on the edge on the D, she took control of the ball, turned and shot to the keeper’s bottom left squeezing in past the inside of the post, putting the Dragons back in front! The crowd were rewarded for their efforts and as Plymouth kicked off from the restart the referee blew the final whistle. It finished 2-1 to the Dragons and secured survival in the Southern Premier League for next season as we embark on our new journey as Gwalia United.

Line Ups:

Cardiff City LFC

  1. Laura O’Sullivan, 2. Libby Piggott, 4. Emily Poole, 8. Chloe Lloyd, 11. Jessie Taylor (68’ 22. Amy Long), 15. Ingrid Aadland (63’ 5. Lily Billingham), 17. Tianna Teisar (63’ 10. Emily Richards), 18. Caitlin Williams, 19. Thierry-Jo Gauvain, 21. Ruby Scahill (77’ 3. Tia Asker), 23. Cerys Jones

Plymouth Argyle WFC

  1. Lily Felgate, 2. Katie Dickson, 5. Giota Papaioannou, 6. Lucy Hack, 7. Charlotte Whitmore, 8. Imy Crawford, 9. Ellie Sara, 15. Georgie Knott, 18. Taya Pomfret, 19. Erin O’Shea (61’ 13. Grace Smith), 20. Fern Orchard

Goals: Ruby Scahill (37) / Ellie Sara (90+3) / Tia Asker (90+5)

Venue: Newport Stadium, Newport, NP19 4PT

Attendance: 90

Player of the match: Emily Poole