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Reserves target cup success

29 February 2020

Nottingham Forest Reserves hope to win their first silverware of the season on Sunday as they take on Crystal Palace Development in the FA Women’s National League Reserve Cup Final at Eastwood CFC.

The Reds are yet to a lose a game across all competitions this season so far as they have been in excellent form since their first game back in September. 

Forest reached the final of the competition in dramatic fashion as they beat Huddersfield Town development 5-4 on penalty kicks in early February. Claire Goater had put The Reds ahead on the 10th minute but the side were pegged back as The Terriers went 2-1 up at half-time. Charlotte Steggles draw the game level on the 50th minute to see the tie through to extra-time but Huddersfield re-gained their lead to go 3-2 ahead. But Annabel McKechnie found the back of the net on the 122nd minute as the scoring was tied up at 3-3 and the game headed to penalties. All five Reds found the back of the net from the spot to book their well-deserved place in the cup final. 

The side have been no strangers to goals this season as four Reds have already hit double figures this campaign. Georgia Gladwin sits top of the goal scoring charts with 13 goals in 13 games and McKechnie follows close behind with 12 goals in 11 games. Goater and Steggles have also found the back of the 10 times across all competitions this season so far and all of them will be looking to further their tallies on Sunday. 

Looking ahead to the game reserve-team assistant manager, Aston Dyer, shared his thoughts. 

He said: “It’s going to be a massive game.

“We’ve not seen much of Crystal Palace and only seen their results which have been strong but regardless we’ve just been preparing the same all week.” 

As Crystal Palace ply their trade in a different league to The Reds both sides have not met this season and Dyer explains that all focus and preparations have been on his Forest side. 

“We’ll focus on what we do which is how we prepare for every game,” he explained.

“First and foremost, we worry about what we’re going to do on the pitch and we do that at training every week.” 

This will be the side’s first cup final of the season as the team also sealed their place in the Nottinghamshire County Cup final and Dyer shares how is side are shaping up ahead of the big clash. 

He said: “I know it’s a cup game and I know individuals will feel different ways but the preparation has been key for us to ensure everyone’s feeling ready for it.” 

The final is being held at Forest’s home ground, Eastwood CFC, and Dyer knows that a strong Forest faithful turnout will help his side. 

He said: “To get a big crowd down on Sunday would be brilliant. 

“All the support this season from the fans and to all the staff at the club has been fantastic so if we can get everyone down on Sunday it would help push us even more.”

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