Chelsea FCW traveled to Twerton Park to play Bristol City WFC amidst a heavy downpour. Like the unrelenting rain, Chelsea’s attack was at the forefront for the full 90 minutes. Instead of choosing between her many striking options, Emma Hayes opted to start Bethany England, Pernille Harder, Sam Kerr, and Fran Kirby together. The match started brightly for Chelsea, who could have been up multiple goals within the opening minutes. Bristol City keeper Sophie Baggaley provided several key stops to keep things from getting out of hand immediately.
Fourteen minutes in, the Blues struck for the first time, courtesy of super Fran Kirby. After Chelsea won a corner, Fran met the resulting ball in at the front post, expertly nicking her header across the face of goal and into the corner. The second and third goals for Chelsea came within minutes of one another. Sophie Ingle managed to simultaneously win a sliding challenge and make an assist, setting up Pernille Harder to smash home from inside the box. Moments later, Fran Kirby was the recipient of some excellent work by England and Kerr to keep play alive in front of goal. Kirby made absolutely no mistake with a finish into the top corner.
Halftime arrived with Chelsea ahead 3-0, but within fifteen minutes of the break, the Blues were ahead 5-0 and in cruise control. Sam Kerr got on the scoring sheet when she scored from Bethany England’s cross with a deft header across goal. England was rewarded for her hard work just five minutes later when she was the first to arrive at the back post to force home against a diving Sophie Baggaley.
The rain intensified in the final half hour of the match, further eroding a rough playing surface. With the result settled, the Blues were able to confidently see out the match, and will head into the international break on back to back wins.
- Starting XI: Berger, Andersson, Bright, Eriksson, Mjelde, Ingle, Ji, Kirby, Harder, England, Kerr
- This really could have been an even more crooked scoreline had it not been for some big early saves from Sophie Baggaley. She sure has gotten a lot of experience in shot stopping this season, but her quality is often overlooked due to the number of goals Bristol City concede.
- Sophie Ingle, fresh of a contract extension through 2023, came up with a rare slide tackle assist. The moment was indicative of the trouble Bristol City had clearing their lines throughout the match. In the second half in particular, the Robins rarely touched the ball outside their own half.
- Fran Kirby keeps right on rolling and her ability to finish never ceases to amaze. She may have caught just a bit of fortune on the headed goal, but as she continues to score them, it may be time to stop giving any credit to fortune. Her second finish into the top corner left no doubt.
- Ebony Salmon shot well over the bar after finding herself 1 v 1 with Ann-Katrin Berger, wasting Bristol’s only great chance to score.
- Magda Eriksson looked to take a slight knock in the final moments of the game. Fortunately, she appeared to be fine after receiving a few moments treatment.
- The Blues head to the international break before returning to WSL action against West Ham on March 7th.