Burnley FC Women had to come from behind twice to secure their place in the draw for the next round of the SSE Women’s FA Cup, with a 3-2 victory over fellow National League Northern Division One side Liverpool Marshalls Feds.
The visitors were looking to avenge their recent 3-0 league defeat to the Lady Clarets while the home side were hoping to emulate last season’s history-making run when they reached the third round.
The game started with both sides struggling to make their mark on proceedings, and with genuine chances hard to come by.
The home side’s closest chance of an early lead would see Georgia Payton fire across the face of goal from a tight angle, while the visitors were able to apply some pressure from set pieces.
The Merseysiders broke the deadlock at the midway point of the half when Abby Pope supplied the pull back from Carla Lee’s defence-splitting pass and Laura Bartup converted with confidence.
It provided an immediate wake-up call to the Clarets and they levelled a minute later.
Sarah Greenhalgh did well down the left to put in a cross and, after Leah Embley’s chance was blocked, Linny Craig made no mistake, hammering the ball into the top corner from close range.
Lee was just off-target after Pope, Jen Rogers and Bartup combined to create the opening while Rogers cleared the bar soon after from Demi Gregory’s corner just before the interval.
The second half got off to the worst start possible for the home team as they fell behind within two minutes of the restart.
Rosie Kinvig forced a save from Lauren Bracewell following a swift counter attack and, after the away side had won back possession, Bartup netted her second of the tie when picking out the bottom corner from 25 yards out.
Again the Clarets had to respond but it was the visitors who almost extended their lead as the game opened up.
Bracewell showed good hands to keep hold of attempts from Gregory and Rogers while the latter was just off target from Kinvig’s assist.
Rogers then fired over the bar from a set-piece but gave Bracewell more to do moments later as the goalkeeper dropped to her post to save.
However, Burnley weathered the storm and restored parity with 20 minutes remaining.
The referee played the advantage following an infringement in midfield, allowing Greenhalgh to put the opposition on the back foot before unleashing a wonderful dipping strike from outside the area that beat the keeper and dropped under the crossbar.
With the sides level once again Liverpool Feds almost took the lead for a third time only for a tame headed chance to be gathered by Bracewell.
The home side took the lead for the first time in the 74th minute.
Despite several robust challenges substitute Lizzy Hamer was able to steal the ball from the Feds defence before wriggling into space to fire a shot into the bottom corner.
That secured Burnley’s passage in to the next round where they will take on Brighouse Town LFC at the Yorkshire Payments Stadium on Sunday, October 7th.