Crunch time for City Ladies

Norwich City Ladies drew 1-1 with derby rivals Ipswich on Sunday and now face two crucial games against Enfield.

The back-to-back games will play a vital part in the Canaries' bid to finish second in the SE Combination and win the right to a play-off to the National League.

City co-manager Emma Fletcher said: 'We have two massive games coming up. We still have the upper hand on the teams below us but having to play Enfield twice in two weeks and needing to get at least four points from the two games is vital.

'If we cancel each other out then there are teams snapping at our heels, waiting to take second place.'

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Norwich City Ladies 1, Ipswich Ladies 1

Norwich went a goal behind to Ipswich in the first half following a free-kick on the edge of the area, but equalised in the second half through Charlotte Branch to get a point.

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Fletcher said a draw was a fair result in tough circumstances.

'We knew today would be tough. Like the previous week we found ourselves with out another regular centre-half before even kicking a ball.

'However, full credit to Danielle Manthorpe and Anna Larkins for stepping in at the back, they were superb and could not have done anything about Ipswich's goal.

'We didn't play badly in the first half but we did find ourselves pushed back as Ipswich were in a determined mood and they did have a good shout for a penalty turned down in the first half, but it wasn't given.

'The second half we took the game to them and deserved to get the equaliser and could have even got a winner, but if I'm honest the draw was a fair result.'

City also lost Jodie Drake on Sunday from a collision with the Ipswich keeper after she had come on as a second-half substitute as City chased the game.

This has caused a selection headache for the Canaries for the next few games.

'It's a bit of a struggle,' admitted Fletcher. 'We lost Drakey and looks like she will be out for at least three weeks, add Kate Parsons, Sophie Gillett and Nikita Morris who are all out for the remainder of the season we are really asking a tremendous amount of out our squad. But that's football for you – and you can't dwell on it you have just got to get on with it.'

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