Successful first European tour for St Albans City Youth U13 Girls' North
- Credit: STACYFC
A first European trip for a girls' team of St Albans City Youth proves an experience to remember.
The U13 North headed to the other side of the North Sea eight years ago for an Easter tour of the Netherlands.
Staying at De Eemhof Centre Parcs and playing in the Almere Cup the girls started their adventure with a game against Hillerod Damen, a well-organised Danish side.
It ended in a 1-0 defeat despite the best efforts of keeper Ellen Fox and a fast-paced Dutch team, ASC WW, proved too strong as they ran out 3-0 winners.
Their final group game pitted them against another Dutch outfit, this one AS'80 but by now the North had found their feet and their roared to a 2-0 win.
Olivia Barnes and Evie Wilkinson had played superbly all day but it was Charlotte Boyle's persistence from a Shauna Smith cross that opened the scoring and she got the second as well, this time after superb approach play from Louisa Ellis and Isabelle Poole.
The day one efforts earned them a place in the Challenge Cup on day two, starting with a match-up against the hosts, AFC Waterwijk.
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City took the lead early through Emily Schofield, Nicola Gosling getting the assist, and were soon two ahead as Danielle Tyler raced on to an excellent pass from Boyle and fired home.
The second half followed a similar pattern, Tyler getting her second from a Romy Kelleher pass and Smith rounding off a 4-0 win with Schofield's assistance.
That put them in the cup final with AS'80 once again the opponents.
It proved to be a much more even contest with AS hitting the post and Fox making a superb stop, all in the first period.
But after the break The U13 North got their noses in front and recorded a 2-0 win to lift the trophy.
Some speedy wing play from Rose Noden and impressive calmness and control in defence from Alice Tello soon gave them a platform for Tyler to reach a loose ball in the box first and slam into the roof of the net.
Skipper Mary Leach got the assist for the final goal, a wonderful solo effort from Schofield, and Romy Kelleher was named player of the tournament for her superb effort at left wing-back.