Solid football showed by Chelsea from kick-off was a good sign that tonight had little chance of being as frustrating as the late dramatic winner we had last weekend against Aston Villa. The hosts at Everton did not seem to have the best defensive setup and Chelsea quickly noticed that, with Sam Kerr and Pernille Harder running them ragged.
The former would score the opener tonight seven minutes into the match. A good floated cross by Sophie Ingle from the right was met by a classic Kerr header, “propping” the ball into the back of the net.
Kerr’s score would be followed by a beautiful goal from Guro Reiten. With the tip of her boot, the Norwegian international doubled our lead over the hosts with a shot from distance.
Erin Cuthbert followed suit. Another shot from outside the box, and another Chelsea goal in the first half to take us three up against the Toffees at Rossett Park.
The three-goal advantage built in the first half of the match was a proper screenshot of what took place at the hosts’ stadium: a complete domination of Chelsea over Everton, with their first shot registered only 42 minutes from kick-off. Even that did not bring a hint of danger to Zecira Musovic’s goal, going way off target in its track.
With most of our work done in the first half, Chelsea had little to do in the second one but maintain their lead. That is precisely what the visitors did, with Everton offering little threat to put our victory in doubt.
- Musovic’s solid performances at goal continue to be rewarded by manager Emma Hayes, entrusting the young goalkeeper with another start. Jonna Andersson makes way for Erin Cuthbert, while the previous midfield duo of Ji So-yun and Drew Spence is replaced by Jessie Fleming and Sophie Ingle. Upfront, Beth England is dropped in favour of Pernille Harder.
- Subs are Magda Eriksson for Niamh Charles, Drew Spence for Erin Cuthbert, Alsu Abdullina for Guro Reiten, Beth England for Pernille Harder, and Maren Mjelde for Aniek Nouwen.
- Eriksson back in business, exactly three months after injury. Welcome back, captain!
- Although Everton did not make much of a challenge anywhere in the pitch during the first half, it was great seeing good midfield play from Jessie Fleming and Sophie Ingle. In fact the duo recorded all the assists for our first half goals tonight!
- Reiten and Cuthbert are great assets to a team already loaded with offensive talent. The fact they keep this up while doing a more than fine job in defence is just amazing.
- Next up: Birmingham City in the FA Cup quarter-finals.