York City Ladies have their final home league game of the season when entertaining Wallsend BC Ladies at Haxby Road this afternoon (kick-off 2.00pm).
An improved recent sequence of five victories from six games in all competitions has certainly helped the Minsterbelles while steering towards safety and the preservation of their current North East Regional Premier League status.
However, their progress was comprehensively checked by a 3-0 defeat at a confident Hartlepool United last time out, although the visitors were still a threat despite remaining unrewarded at Victoria Park.
That fixture was particularly significant for the progressive north-east hosts as it witnessed their first-ever game at Hartlepool United FC’s stadium.
Photo: Ian Parker
Belles midfielder Nikki Brown in recent action against Wakefield
For their part the Belles will be seeking revenge this weekend for a slender defeat when fielding an extremely depleted squad at Wallsend back in October.
On that occasion, Rebecca George scored the only goal direct from a 35-yard free-kick past stand-in City goalkeeper Megan Bramham, to maintain the visitors’ difficult start to the campaign.
Wallsend’s early season optimism has, though, since been deflated by a number of injuries, which have in turn resulted in a series of heavy recent defeats, including both Norton & Stockton Ancients and Durham Cestria blasting fifteen goals past them.
Nevertheless the Tynesiders at least responded with defiance while themselves crashing ten goals without reply against bottom-of-the-table Wakefield last weekend. That was actually a first league success for them since accounting for Castleford White Rose 5-4 in late January.
There’s a single league meeting elsewhere on Sunday afternoon with third-placed Hartlepool hosting Farsley Celtic; although the biggest remaining game of the season is scheduled to occur around forty-eight hours later as leaders Norton & Stockton take on second-placed Durham.
Photos by kind permission of Ian Parker