Tractor Girls thumped in first match of 2019

Town winger Sophie Welton during Ipswich Town FC Women 5-0 defeat at home to Actonians Picture: ROSS

Town winger Sophie Welton during Ipswich Town FC Women 5-0 defeat at home to Actonians Picture: ROSS HALLS - Credit: Archant

Women’s National League Division 1 South East Ipswich Town 0 Actonians 5 Ipswich Town Women kicked off their 2019 calendar year with heavy 5-0 defeat to Actonians at The Goldstar Ground, Felixstowe on Sunday, writes Kieren Standley.

Town forward Natasha Thomas battles for the ball Picture: ROSS HALLS

Town forward Natasha Thomas battles for the ball Picture: ROSS HALLS - Credit: Archant

A hat-trick from last season’s league golden boot winner Alessandra Barreca and a brace from forward Carla Williams saw the West Londoners to a convincing victory on a very bad day at the office for Town.

The visitors took the lead after eight minutes as Williams seized on a soft header from Town defender Harriet Petley and lifted the ball over the head of the stranded debutant Blues ‘keeper Danni Clarke.

Ipswich failed to create much in the first-half, with the best chance for the Blues going begging as Cassie Craddock released Natasha Thomas but after beating two players, her driven cross evaded Toni-Anne Wayne in the six-yard box.

Town defender Harriet Petley on the ball Picture: ROSS HALLS

Town defender Harriet Petley on the ball Picture: ROSS HALLS - Credit: Archant

Actonians doubled their advantage soon after the hour mark as Williams once again seized on a loose ball outside the Town area before catching out Clarke with another lobbed effort.

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The Blues began to become frustrated, with departing midfielder Natalie Richardson having the only attempts on goal but like many other Town efforts, they failed to test Paige Horsnell in the visitors net.

Town forward Toni-Anne Wayne goes forward in the second half Picture: ROSS HALLS

Town forward Toni-Anne Wayne goes forward in the second half Picture: ROSS HALLS - Credit: Archant

The West Londoners were soon out of sight as Flo Cage was caught in possession and Barreca was alert to get into space to receive the ball before punishing the Blues with a cool strike into the far corner.

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The reigning golden boot winner was at it again just minutes later as she was played in behind the Town defence and calmly slotted underneath the helpless Clarke.

The final blow was delivered in added time as Barreca claimed the match ball. Cage was pressured into a soft headed clearance and the Actonians star wrestled with the Blues defender before breaking free of her marker and beating Clarke at her near post.

Town midfielder Cassie Craddock wins the ball Picture: ROSS HALLS

Town midfielder Cassie Craddock wins the ball Picture: ROSS HALLS - Credit: Archant

The result sees Town remain seventh in the table. The Tractor Girls return to action at home to Cambridge United this Sunday.

Town captain Natalie Richardson in action during her final game for the Blues Picture: ROSS HALLS

Town captain Natalie Richardson in action during her final game for the Blues Picture: ROSS HALLS - Credit: Archant

Town captain Natalie Richardson in actionPicture: ROSS HALLS

Town captain Natalie Richardson in actionPicture: ROSS HALLS - Credit: Archant

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