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Nottingham Forest 2-2 PNEWFC

30 March 2016

North End let slip two winning positions in a 2-2 draw in Nottingham but added to their points tally in their race for the FA Women’s Premier League title.

Natasha Flint opened the scoring on her return to the club after her departure from Notts County two weeks ago, but Megan Howard cancelled out the early goal soon after.

PNE went in 2-1 up at the break after Charlotte Farrell headed in on 38 minutes for her eighth goal of the season before Natasha Meade’s looping free kick found its way over Dan Brown.

There was just the one change to the starting line-up for PNE with Katie Brusell replaced by Laura Walker in the middle of midfield.

Luke Swindlehurst’s side started the brightest in the early stages as they dominated the ball in the Forest half. Beth Stanfield’s back post header from an in-swinging corner kick landed inches wide of the post, before Flint’s one-two with Yasmine Swarbrick opened up room on the edge of the penalty box, but Flint dragged her shot wide.

Flint did eventually score only eight minutes later from a very intelligent piece of play. Her determination to track down the defence paid off as she won the ball back before turning and finishing in style at the goalkeeper’s front post.

Forest hit back soon after, Howard was teed off on 30 minutes by Marian McIntosh on the edge of the penalty area before unleashing a deadly shot past Dan Brown.

However, it was not long until PNE were back in front again. Jenna Carroll’s free kick from just inside the home side’s half found its way into the Forest penalty area and it was Farrell that rose the highest above Vanessa Kinnerley, as she headed in from close range.

North End were looking good for their lead at half time as they looked determined to correct their 2-0 defeat in the FA Cup only one month earlier.

The home side came out of the blocks quickly in the second half though as captain, Kelly Kennaugh, had an early attempt on goal cleared off the line by Hannah Forster.

Meade eventually found a way back into the game as her threatening free kick was aided by the high winds, Brown came to collect the ball but instead the ball looped over the ever-present shot stopper and nestled in the back of the net.

Brown’s goal was under threat again as Meade unleashed a shot on target as she tried to find a winner for Forest, but Brown did well to tip the ball onto the bar and over.

Farrell attempted a speculative effort from just outside the Forest penalty area with a first time shot but the ball soared high over the bar for PNE’s last chance of the match.

Forest almost grabbed a late winner as another Kennaugh header was destined for the top corner of the goal, but Brown reacted quickly and pulled off a spectacular save to deny all three points going to Forest.

Nottingham Forest starting line-up: Kinnerley, Fuglar, Greenan (Kemp 45), Ejupi, Kennaugh, Cameron, McKechnie, Meade (White 78), Bell, Howard, Mcintosh

Unused subs: Richardson, Betteridge, Copeland

PNE starting line-up: Brown, Stanfield (N. Forster 80), Forshaw, Farrell, Carroll, H. Forster, Walker, Young, Makin, Flint, Swarbrick

Unused subs: Riley

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