Match Report & Photos
U16 Girls Shield Final 2023 Birr Town vs Templevilla FC in Clara Friday 26th May
As a result of a cracking semi final over two legs against Portlaoise, we deserved our place in the final. Templevilla FC stood in our way. We were acutely aware of the task in hand as evidenced by their strong defence throughout the game.
We were aware of the big occasion as the referee lead the two teams out onto the field. The conditions on the night were perfect for a game of soccer. There was a good crowd of supporters from both sides which added to the occasion.
To start the game off our two captains, Stephanie and Ava went in for the coin toss. After that the girls put on their game faces and never succumbed to any nerves throughout the whole game.
We got on the scoresheet early, after about three mins into the first half when Katelyn used her strength and skill to get into the box and blasted past the keeper into the corner of the net.
After the goal it was a war of attrition. Templevilla were physically stronger than us for most of the game but our five woman midfield of Kayla, Nadine, Ali, Katelyn and Cara, worked extremely hard getting up and down the pitch to keep out Templevilla. Our defence of Stephanie, Aleesha, Ceola and Mahe proved to be strong all game and with our brilliant shot-stopper Aoibhinn kept Templevilla at bay. In the first half Laia got special attention from Templevilla which created space for other players to come into their own. The first half ended 1-0.
The second half saw no change initially in personnel. We had to show faith in the girls who were giving it 110%. Birr for the first 15 mins of the second half looked to be the better team but we knew Templevilla would come at us. Templevilla had a good spell for about ten mins when we decided to make a change in midfield. We replaced Nadine with Lacey after the former had ran herself into the ground. Birr then regained control of the game and were rewarded with their second goal with ten mins left, which after a through ball from Lacey, was despatched by Cara. Birr Town deserved to be 2-0 up. We had a lengthy break when a player from each side was being treated for injury. Templevilla made a few changes and went more direct and did cause us problems at the back. Again great defending, goalkeeping and some help from the crossbar managed to keep them out.
The game finished to the cheers of the girls and their supporters. The woman of the match goes to our two centre halfs, Aleesha and Ceola.
These girls deserved to get something from this season and the shield was testament to their hard work and dedication throughout the season. The management team of Keith and Lisa will be sad to pass the reigns on to someone else next season but will look forward to being a spectator on the sideline next year.
Birr Town FC would like to wish Laia the very best of luck as she returns home to Barcelona on Sunday. She has a scholarship in America to look forward to next year and we are sure she will do well there. She showed the team the way and they are more than capable of continuing at that level next season.
Finally, I just want to thank our sponsors Nolan’s Bar for providing food and refreshments in the clubhouse after our game yesterday. It is much appreciated