Newcomers shine in friendly win for Rotherham United Women

Jessie Broadhurst makes no mistake from the spot. Photos: Teri Bailey.Jessie Broadhurst makes no mistake from the spot. Photos: Teri Bailey.
Jessie Broadhurst makes no mistake from the spot. Photos: Teri Bailey.
THREE new signings were in the goals for Rotherham United Women as they began pre-season in style.


Jessie Broadhurst bagged a brace - including a coolly-slotted penalty - in a 6-1 win at Retford FC, while strike partner Milly Colford - another summer recruit - finished a flowing move with a classy lob to open her own account in red and white.

There was also a debut goal for winger Demi Weekes, who weaved her way through the home defence to apply the cherry on top of a comfortable victory.

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Rotherham had been pegged back briefly when Broadhurst's early opener was cancelled out, Retford's Izzy Thorpe poaching the rebound from close range as the Millers ball-watched after a shot hit the bar and looped back into play.

Keeper Beth Baxter will be disappointed with that blot on her clean sheet but otherwise enjoyed a happier afternoon against The Rail, beating away several shots, confidently claiming crosses and leaping to her right to prevent a certain own goal after Lucie Tinker unwittingly diverted a searching cross.

The sides weren't level for long after the equaliser as the ever-willing right-wing running of Halima Essa proved profitable on 12 minutes, her cross sneaking in at the near post.

Both sides continued to press, with Broadhurst frustrated once and Colford denied twice, before the latter met an Essa cross first-time and lofted it past the despairing dive of Chloe Rose.

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Madison Wilson, driving through from midfield, vainly tried her luck from 30 yards but the best chance for a fourth before the break fell to Broadhurst, whose shot went high and wide.

The Millers, with Jess Jones and Lottie Tattam on for Milly and Wilson, started the second half strongly and quickly put the game beyond Retford.

Sidni Simmons, freshly switched from the right to left back, was overjoyed when her free-kick from long range evaded the keeper's dive, before Broadhurst finished clinically from the spot following what looked a harsh handball call.

The striker could have bagged a hat-trick after tapping in, but the offside flag intervened.

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On 55 minutes, Weekes joined the party with a cool 12-yard finish - and was close to a second moments later.

Tattam weighed into the action, forcing two smart saves from Rose, while another effort from Weekes was tipped onto the bar.

Retford weren't without their chances, with Baxter twice called into action to keep them out, but the Millers defence, marshalled by skipper Lori-Anne Tart, was otherwise untroubled.

Abbie Staples (above), who began at left back before joining the composed Lauren Brogan after the interval in a dominant central midfield duo, was named player of the match after an all-action display.

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The Millers were back in pre-season training this week ahead of their next friendly against Altofts Ladies on Sunday. 

Kick-off at Sheffield Hallam University Sports Park in Brinsworth is at 2pm.

Millers: Beth Baxter, Sidni Simmons, Lori-Anne Tart, Lucie Tinker, Abbie Staples, Lauren Brogan, Madison Wilson, Halima Essa, Demi Weekes, Milly Colford, Jessie Broadhurst. Subs: Jess Jones (for Wilson), Lottie Tattam (for Colford).

Retford: Chloe Rose, Itohan Emovan, Katie Stainsby, Em North, Hannah Robertson, Ellie Sims, Emma Gray, Georgia Lewis, Chantelle Johnson, Izzy Thorpe, Emma Broome. Subs: Jess Walker, Bianca Wilson, Kayla Nelson.

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