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Girls Football Academy reach English Schools National Final

Barking Abbey Girls' Football Academy have reached their first English Schools National Final with a 2-1 win away to current holders John Madejski School.

The game played on Wednesday 8th February started well for Abbey when Anais Reynolds found herself 1v1 with the goal keeper forcing her to save from point blank. With Abbey being knocked out by the same opposition at this stage last season they were determined to go one better and Anele Komani showed that determination when she out jumped the goal keeper to head in a Imogen Bennett cross to make it 1-0. John Madejski continued to be a constant threat with goal keeper Rose Hemans making a crucial block following a goal bound effort from a corner. 

Abbey came out from the break refreshed but had to contend with a tactical re-shuffle from the hosts. The home team started to become a constant threat but before they could capitalize on their growing possession a strong run from Klesha Darroux brought her 1v1 with the goal keeper who managed to save the first effort only to see Anais Reynolds to tap in at close range to make it 2-0. John Madesjki rallied and shortly after clawed a goal back after a long distance effort caught out Hemans in the Abbey goal. This made for an interesting 20 or so minutes but Abbey continued to apply the pressure whenever possible and they could have seen themselves go 3-1 up only for the crossbar to prevent Kaydee Kings corner from going in. John Madesjki threw everything they could at the away side but the Barking Abbey defense captained by Aysha Bentick stood strong and after the final whistle blew there were scenes of celebrations. 

"Today is a landmark day for the girls football academy. Having fallen to the same team at this stage last year we were determined to go one better. To have to not only play away, but to have to play and beat the holders was a difficult task and to do it in the manner that we did was a real testament to our young players who fought so very hard for this result."
Sharon Brownlie - Barking Abbey Head of Girls' Football

Barking Abbey Girls' Academy will now play Durham Sixth Form in the final  at Notts County FC on Wednesday 22nd March. The Girls' Academy are still recruiting for September 2017, please contact Sharon Brownlie on 0208 270 6891 or email

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