Newcastle United vs Stockport County: Magpies ground out tough first home victory

Newcastle United came through a tough first home game of the season against Stockport County thanks to goals from Lauren Robson and Georgia Gibson.

Robson pulled out a magical striker just after the hour mark finding the top right corner.

Gibson sealed all three points as she headed home a loose ball from close range with less than 10 minutes to go.

It was a lowkey start to the first half at Kingston Park that saw very few chances created from either side, although Newcastle United did dominate the ball.

The ever lively Katie Barker was causing the Stockport backline problems despite not making much of an impact in the final until the half-hour mark.

A first half with little quality

Barker managed to find some space in behind and fired an effort towards the far post, only for it to drag narrowly wide.

Just before half time, it was some route one football that almost opened up Stockport as Barker raced through before cutting inside and seeing her effort headed away which appeared to be goal bound.

Less than five minutes into the second half and Newcastle squandered a glorious chance to take the lead as Kacie Elson was played through the middle only to bend an effort narrowly over the bar.

Newcastle came out much better in the second as Barker picked up a pocket of space on the edge of the area but her effort was uncontrolled and went wide of the far post.

Once again, Newcastle let Stockport off the hook as a lofted free kick wasn’t cleared by the visitors but Jess Spark’s effort lopped aimlessly over the bar from 12-yards out.

A huge double save from Charlie Bolland which saw her make a great diving save to save from Robson, before returning to her feet and denying Gibson with a trailing leg.

Robson’s stunner breaks the deadlock

As the ball found its way back to Robson on the right-hand side of the penalty area, the winger whipped a fantastic striker into the far right corner leaving Bolland no chance at all.

Robson pulled that finish out of nothing as the game was drifting into a very frustrating one for the Magpies and Becky Langley.

With just 15 minutes left to play, Chloe Howard appeared to lose the flight of the ball which allowed Barker to race in behind, only to be tugged back by the defender and thus, was given her marching orders.

There was a heart-in-mouth moment as the 80th minute approached when Spark missed the ball and allowed Jess Battle to race in, only for her heavy touch to lead to nothing.

Newcastle doubled their lead with less than eight minutes to go when Georgia Gibson headed home from close range.

The midfielder reacted quickest as Beth Guy’s thumping header crashed back off the crossbar and Gibson was there to pounce on the loose ball.

It won’t have been a totally pleasant watch for Langley at Kingston Park, but a clean sheet and two goals ensure they maintain their 100% record this season.

Newcastle United will know that they perhaps came through this game luckily unscathed after performing poorly in the first half, however, a lot of credit must go to Stockport who frustrated their hosts all afternoon.

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