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Match Report: Sunderland Women 2 – 2 Durham Women (Durham 3-1 on penalties)

Vice-captain Natasha Fenton celebrates her opener (Credit: Sunderland Women)

Durham took the spoils after a penalty shootout in the second River Wear derby inside a week at a bitter night in the Continental Tyres Cup.

Former Sunderland midfielder Mollie Lambert put Durham ahead early in the game before Natasha Fenton equalised for the home team. Brianna Westrup turned the game around for Sunderland before half time. At the death, Saoirse Noonan struck to send the game to penalties.

Durham travelled to Sunderland looking to avenge the weekend’s 1-0 loss against their Wearside rivals but would have to do it with only four named substitutes due to a spree of knocks. Sunderland meanwhile, sought to build on their fantastic unbeaten start to the season.

Lambert’s fifth minute opener came through the channel, latching onto Poppy Pritchard’s through ball she slotted into the far corner.

Durham’s lead lasted just ten minutes as Fenton rose to meet Emily Scarr’s floated corner and nodded home. Sunderland completed the turnaround with an almost carbon copy second from the opposite side, this time Westrup meeting the ball to score.

In stoppage time, Durham levelled through Noonan, who latched onto a loose ball in the box to take the game to penalties.

In the shootout Naoisha McAloon played the hero for Durham, saving three spot kicks in a row as Durham won 3-1 and take home the extra point. Becky Salicki scored what was the winning penalty.

Durham host Sheffield United next in the cup and Sunderland travel to Blackburn.