Grace Moloney’s FA Cup heroics, Harvey Harry at the double and Woodley United Ladies take charge

Weekend Talking Points from Binfield's title challenge to Grace Moloney's FA Cup heroics. Photo's by Neil Graham, Andrew Batt and Darren Woolley.
Weekend Talking Points from Binfield's title challenge to Grace Moloney's FA Cup heroics. Photo's by Neil Graham, Andrew Batt and Darren Woolley.

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Football was most certainly back at the weekend as more games were played than were postponed for the first time in quite awhile.

As ever, these are our big weekend talking points, if you have any of your own drop them in the comments below or click here.

Grace Moloney offers a timely reminder of her abilities in Vitality Women’s FA Cup

She’s seen her FA WSL number one jersey occupied by Northern Ireland international Jacqui Burns for much of this season, but on Sunday Grace Moloney issued a reminder of what made her a Reading FC Women star.

The stopper saved three penalty kicks in an FA Cup shootout with Leicester City to see the Royals safely through to the Fifth Round and another date with Tottenham Hotspur.

The sheer joy on Moloney’s face when she saved the last-spot kick and her run straight to a specific part of the crowd was quite spine-tingling and a great moment for the Slough-born ‘keeper.

It’s unlikely Moloney will usurp Burns – who has been quite sensational herself this season – in time for Liverpool at the weekend, but competition for that jersey will keep both goalkeepers on their toes, and that in the end is very very good news for Reading FC Women in their fight to beat the drop.

Berkshire’s Wembley FA Trophy and FA Vase double is still on

At the third time of asking, Ascot United got to Devon and got past Buckland Athletic in the FA Vase Fourth Round, winning 3-1.

It means the possibility of a Berkshire double in the two national FA competitions anyone really cares about is still on. The Yellas are the only Berks side left in the Vase and are ranked as 5/2 favourites by BetVictor ahead of Jersey Bulls and holders Newport Pagnell Town who will play each other in the Fifth Round. The full draw is here.

The double chances are boosted by the three Berkshire sides in the FA Trophy Fifth Round. Bracknell Town, Hungerford Town and Maidenhead United are all battling for a place in the Quarter Finals when their own Fifth Round ties come around in a week’s time.

FA Trophy and FA Vase Fifth Round ties are due to be played on the weekend of Saturday 11th February.

Now this is a list to be proud of – Maidenhead United

No context required.

Binfield make a case for the Isthmian League title

Binfield manager Garry Haylock has challenged his side to push for the South Central Division One title and his players backed him up over the weekend, not least Harvey Harry, with a 2-1 win at Bedfont Sports.

Buoyed by the return of centre-back Lewis Pegg from Met Police, Haylock described the Bedfont tie as ‘difficult’ in his post-match interview and the Moles boss will be putting his money where his mouth is on Tuesday night for sure when leaders Basingstoke Town visit Hill Farm Lane, the shine will be off that 4-0 win in Hampshire at the start of the season if the Moles don’t come away with the three points this week.

Woodley United Ladies are in charge

Action from Caversham United vs Woodley United.
Action from Caversham United vs Woodley United. Photo: Andrew Batt.

Title destiny in their own hands. That’s all Woodley United Ladies boss Marc Surtees could have asked for in the Southern Region Women’s Football League Division One North this season after a 7-0 win over Caversham United gave his side a points lead at the top of the table.

Woodley and challengers Milton United have now played an equal number of games and are the only two sides capable of winning the title this season with four games to go – with Woodley’s May Hamblin going back to the top of the goalscorer charts following her weekend hat-trick.

The crunch fixture is arguably on the 12th February when Milton host Woodley, and while not a mathematical certainty the winners would have the upper-hand, though a draw wouldn’t be a disaster for the Kestrels. A Wandering Tractor report on this game is available here.

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