We’re all feeling down, so let the women cheer us up. Sunderland Women’s Football Club have secured their Premier League title, grabbing the three points needed to be sure in a difficult match at Millwall.
The girls, who also reached the FA Women’s Cup fifth round to go out with a fighting display (men playing for SAFC please note) against Arsenal, came from behind to win 3-2 with goals from Natalie Gutteridge, Kelly MacDougall and Abby Holmes.
Everyone associated with the club deserves great credit to have done so well, especially after being excluded from the so-called Super League.
Salut! Sunderland salutes their achievement, but hopes they will understand that we won’t be truly happy until the men have come to their senses and chalked up some wins in the Premier proper.
Here are edited highlights of Bruce Unwin’s report in the Northern Echo:
” … Needing only three points from their final three games to land their first major national crown, the Lady Black Cats were a goal up through Natalie Gutteridge’s second minute header.
The Lionesses roared back at Beckenham to lead 2-1 by half-time with goals by Lindsey Morgan and Emma Beckett.
But as time lapsed the Wearside women dug deep and levelled through a 40-yard effort from Kelly MacDougall with little more than quarter of an hour remaining … before full-back Abby Holmes sneaked the winner with another headed goal, two minutes from full-time.
Delighted manager Mick Mulhern said the achievement only underlined the frustration at Sunderland being excluded from the FA’s first Women’s Super League.
Sunderland, fifth-placed finshers in the last full National Division season, were the highest ranked applicants to be excluded from the founding summer league, starting next week.
Mulhern’s team recently beat one of the chosen eight, Lincoln, in the FA Cup and only lost to all-conquering Arsenal, 3-2 after extra-time, in the quarter-final.”
Bravo, Sunderland Lasses.
And I am delighted to say that when I went to safc.com fearing the worst, I found they had indeed acknowledged the women’s success.