New South Shields Ladies head coach Ben Garrity has spoken about his first days in charge and his plans moving forward as the team prepares for an FA Cup trip to Morecambe this weekend.
The ladies recorded their first league victory of the season last weekend with an impressive 3-2 win at Farsley Celtic, which was Garrity’s first game in charge.
Garrity said: “First and foremost, we are gutted to see Scott leave us so early in the season, but sometimes these things happen in football and can’t be helped.
“We (as a team) are all thankful and grateful for everything Scott did in his time here.
“Personally, I am really looking forward to the challenge of taking over South Shields Ladies.
“Having been Scott’s assistant helps me in my new role as I’ve already developed a relationship with the players and should already have their respect from my time as assistant.
“We had a really good, productive first training session last week and our first win of the season last Sunday so we are all in very good spirits.
“It’s great to see the lasses with smiles on their faces and enjoying their football, which is the way it should be.”
Building on the recent victory at Farsley Celtic is the priority for the new boss, and the focus now shifts onto the Ladies’ FA Cup tie against Morecambe on Sunday, as Garrity looks to improve the squad game-upon-game and further improve the harmony among the group.
He added: “My plans going forward are to work hard on and off the pitch, to help improve the squad and help us get up the league to the position where we deserve to be.
“We’re all looking forward to our FA Cup tie against Morecambe this Sunday, and hopefully we can come back up to Shields in the hat for the next round.”
South Shields Ladies were well beaten by an impressive York City side as the visitors ran out 5-1 winners on Sunday.
The result left the Mariners still searching for their first points of the season in the North East Regional Women’s League, having lost all three of their games so far.
They faced a difficult task at Harton Welfare against York, who ended the day top of the table with 10 points from four games, and are expected to challenge for the title.
Shields will therefore hope to use Sunday’s game as a learning curve as they look to build their way into the campaign.
Scott Curtis’ side created the first opportunity as Isla Maggs tried her luck from distance, but the effort comfortably cleared the bar.
The visitors came close to opening the scoring minutes later as a shot from close range was dragged wide, but they did take the lead moments afterwards.
An inviting cross found the unmarked Sophie Tinson, and she headed past Scarlett Gowans and into the top corner.
Shields almost responded immediately as Caitlin Bates whipped the ball into the penalty area and Eve Gatens’ volley went just wide.
York scored the crucial second goal, though, as a floated corner made its way to the edge of the penalty area and a low shot from Milly Ash sneaked into the far post.
Bates came close to halving the deficit when she poked the ball beyond the goalkeeper, but the effort was cleared off the line.
It was then Gatens’ turn to come close, but her well-struck effort from distance was straight at the goalkeeper.
Only moments after the restart, York made it three. Another cross into the box caused unrest, and the ball was prodded home from close range by Holly Findlay.
York made it four midway through the second half when a well-hit free-kick by Tinson struck the inside of the post and bounced into the net.
The visitors had an opportunity to add a fifth as an incisive break saw Tinson go through on goal, but Gowans made an excellent save.
Shields were then awarded a penalty. Gatens made space and was about to pull the trigger before being brought down. She then confidently fired the spot kick into the bottom corner.
Gatens came close to adding a second, but was beaten to the ball in the nick of time by the goalkeeper as she intercepted a square pass from Bates.
Any lingering Shields hopes were extinguished, though, when York scored their fifth through Rebecca Fevers, who lifted the ball into an empty net after a miscued clearance.
Mariners head coach Scott Curtis said: “It was disappointing to lose in the fashion that we did, because it was important to build on last week, when we beat Chester-le-Street United in the FA Cup.
“We just need to make sure we respond to this and learn from our mistakes.”
Image: Craig McNair.
South Shields left it late against Chester-le-Street United as the Mariners ran out 3-2 winners in the second qualifying round of the Women’s FA Cup.
For the third consecutive Sunday, the Mariners were involved in a 3-2 scoreline but they were on the right end of it this time thanks to two goals in the final nine minutes.
Isla Maggs had given Scott Curtis’ side an early lead but they looked like they were heading out of the competition when the visitors turned things around to go 2-1 ahead at Harton Welfare.
Late strikes from Caitlin Bates and Natalie May clinched the tie for Shields, though, as they edged out their plucky opponents.
The Mariners had enjoyed an impressive opening to the game, having created their first chance with less than a minute on the clock. Bates tried her luck from the edge of the area but the goalkeeper made a comfortable save.
A golden opportunity to open the scoring followed soon after as Eve Gatens did brilliantly to put Becki McMahon through on goal, and she forced a double save from the goalkeeper.
Shields found the goal they had been threatening in the 11th minute when a ball across the box by Bates caused confusion and Maggs was in the right place to tap home.
However, Chester-le-Street hit back immediately. A whipped cross sneaked into the far post, just as it looked to be heading wide.
The home side looked for a swift response as McMahon found herself through on goal again. The goalkeeper made a fantastic save, before Bates’ effort was cleared off the line.
It was Chester-le-Street who took the lead soon afterwards. In similar fashion to the first goal, another cross found its way into the far post.
The Mariners almost pulled the game level as Bates played the ball back to Maggs inside the area, but her strike was just wide.
Chester-le-Street nearly doubled their lead midway through the second half. Scarlett Gowans produced a parried save but breathed a sigh of relief when the rebound was lobbed over the bar.
Gatens then had a great chance to level the scores for Shields. Bates floated in a great corner, but the goalkeeper somehow kept Gatens’ effort out from point-blank range.
The Mariners found the equaliser shortly afterwards as a great run and pass from McMahon found Bates in the area, and she turned and fired a low left-footed strike into the bottom corner.
In the dying embers of the game, Shields found a winner. After Gatens’ effort was stopped on the line, the ball sat up kindly for May, who volleyed from the edge of the area and found the top corner.
After the game, match-winner May said: “It’s a really nice feeling.
“Scott has been telling me to get forward and shoot more often, so to see that go in was great.
“We weren’t at our best but we dug in and got the result in the end, so we need to build on this.
“The important thing is that we are through to the next round.”