BRADFORD City Women secured seventh place in the FA Women’s National League Division One following a dramatic 4-3 win at Alnwick on the final day of the season.

As had been the theme in recent weeks City pushed and probed and troubled the opposition in the first half. Only on a couple of occasions did the hosts break through the siege and themselves galloped downhill towards Kirkham’s goal, but with little success.


Instead it was Bradford who had the most of the chances. A powerful Charlotte Stuart header from a Hope Knight corner opened the scoring, before the City number seven turned provider, finding Emma Elliot with a brilliant through ball up hill, for the forward to slot home, for her second since rejoining the club.

This capped a half full of half chances, with Knight and Stuart going close, alongside an unlucky Stube whose strike cannoned off the crossbar.

The second half started much the same. Stuart, Knight and Beck all had efforts that were thwarted, with the pick of Stark's saves coming from a great Stuart drive. All before Stuart secured her second, curling a set back into the far post from the edge of the area – this marked her 19th of a remarkable campaign for the centre back.


Markey, Knapton, Shepherd, Gill and Jakeman all entered the fray over the next 10 minutes, as City manager Chris Hames ringed the changes.

Alnwick pulled one back after a fierce drive smashed the underside of the crossbar, before going in off Kirkham. Then a mix-up gave the hosts a penalty, but standing big, Kirkham won the battle of wills diving left and turning the strike away.

Knight added gloss to the scoreline, allaying some fears of a fightback, by adding a fourth. Stuart cut through the back line, Knight received it and drilled it low in to the far corner. The forward's 11th goal since joining the club in January.

Mistakes first allowed Alnwick to pull another back – a cut back to Williams gave her an open goal to slide in to, and then gave the hosts another chance from the spot. A different taker couldn’t change the outcome however, this time Kirkham dived right, using her legs to turn the effort over the bar – a quite remarkable save.

Moments later, though, between yet more chances for City to extend their lead, Alnwick did pull another back to make for a slightly nervier closing minute than had been expected just 10 minutes prior.


The game was seen out, with the win moving City two places higher and securing a seventh place finish.

Hames said: “We had a job to do, we needed to work towards our targets and build towards next season.

“It was also nice to try see out what has been a long, hectic, stressful but enjoyable season in the right way. We did that.

"Yes, we had a bit of a mad moment in the second half, but it doesn’t take away from what we did do, what we have achieved this season and it was a good fun day.

"To get seventh is a good season, particularly where we were in December and what we had to catch up on.

“We’ve overtaken four teams in the process and have plenty of positives to build on.”