Report: Cup Semi Heartache For Ladies

Everton Ladies fell to a heartbreaking defeat in the SSE Women’s FA Cup semi-finals after Arsenal Women scored in stoppage-time to snatch a 2-1 victory at the Marine Travel Arena. 

The Gunners had gone ahead through Danielle Carter’s 25th-minute strike but the Blue Girls hit back midway through the second half. 


Olivia Chance was brought down in the area by Dominique Janssen and Chloe Kelly stepped up to fire the spot-kick past Sari van Veenendaal and bring the Blue Girls level.

The game looked destined for extra time but Louise Quinn headed home from close range in added time to book Arsenal a spot at Wembley.

Blue Girls boss Andy Spence made four changes to the side which drew 1-1 at Sunderland last time out.
 
Kirstie Levell, Faye Bryson, Chance and Jodie Brett came into the side in place of Lizzie Durack, Taylor Hinds, Meg Finnigan and Mollie Green.

Everton started the better of the two sides with skipper Dan Turner posing a threat down the right-hand side. First, she whipped in a dangerous cross which was well cleared by the Arsenal defence, before then seeing her effort from 25 yards deflected just wide on nine minutes.

Four minutes later, Arsenal defender Leah Williamson excellently cut out another Turner cross that had looked destined for Courtney Sweetman-Kirk.

The Gunners grew into the game, however, and struck first on 25 minutes. Heather O’Reilly broke clear down the right-hand side before putting in a low cross which found Carter, who clinically finished past Kirstie Levell.

Everton responded well to the setback but struggled to create any clear cut chances as Arsenal went into the half-time break with the advantage.

The Blue Girls started the second half firmly on the front foot, however.

Kelly, in particular, was looking dangerous and twice was denied by last-ditch Arsenal blocks just when she was about to pull the trigger.

Carter then almost grabbed Arsenal’s second but her scuffed effort was well saved by Levell.

It was the Blue Girls who were to strike next, however.

Chance was bundled over by Jannsen just inside the area and former Gunners forward Kelly kept her cool to fire the Toffees level from the spot on 67 minutes.

The goal lifted Spence’s side and Turner shot just over with the Blue Girls pushing for a winner. Chaney Boye-Hlorkah – who had come on for Jodie Brett – was next to threaten but her effort from outside the box went just wide.

It was the Gunners who would have the last word, though, and – after a spell of late pressure – Quinn headed home to secure a dramatic victory.


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