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Chelsea FCW vs. West Ham United FCW, Conti Cup: Team news, preview, how to watch

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A London derby semifinal

Chelsea Women v West Ham United Women - Barclays FA Women’s Super League Photo by James Chance/Getty Images

After eliminating big rivals Manchester City in the previous round, and with a place in the Conti Cup (i.e. League Cup) final on the line, Chelsea FCW welcome West Ham United to Kingsmeadow.

Having never lost to the Irons, Chelsea will be considered heavy favorites. West Ham will be buoyed by their most recent meeting ending in defeat by a single goal.

The victors will play the final at Vicarage Road against either Bristol City WFC or Leicester City WFC on March 14th.

Date / Time: Wednesday, February 3rd, 2021, 17.00 GMT; 12:00pm EST; 10:30pm IST
Venue: Kingsmeadow
Referee: Stacey Pearson
Forecast: Cool and cloudy

On TV: none (UK or USA)
Streaming: The FA Player (International)

Chelsea FCW team news: The Blues machine continue to steamroll everything standing in the way. After a nervy beginning to Sunday’s match against Spurs, Chelsea ended up strolling to a 4-0 victory and another three points. Now the sights are on the Conti Cup final.

Emma Hayes has done an excellent job in maintaining the fitness, balance, and focus of the squad. She also has given first team opportunities to Jorja Fox and Aggie Beever-Jones, two highly regarded talents developed in Chelsea’s academy.

It has been impressive (albeit hard to predict) how Hayes has rotated players without the team skipping a beat. Sam Kerr has been in impressive goal-scoring form, and given her hat-trick in Chelsea’s most recent matchup with West Ham, it is hard to see her being left out. Melanie Leupolz, also in scintillating form, has become an anchor in midfield and has been player of the match seemingly more often than not. Erin Cuthbert was left out of the team altogether against Tottenham, but there was some indication she would be available for selection in this one.

West Ham United FCW team news: The Irons find themselves in the last four of the League Cup thanks to their 3-0 quarterfinal victory against Durham WFC.

Manager Olli Harder replaced Matt Beard (now at Bristol City WFC) in December, just a few weeks after their last game against Chelsea. While West Ham still only have two wins in league play, this Cup run has showcased some of their best performances.

January saw the departure of short-term loanees Rachel Daly and Ruby Grant. Daly was perhaps West Ham’s biggest attacking threat, highlighted by a goal against the Blues in December. Instead, Emily van Egmond will likely be the one who will concern Chelsea’s backline. At the other end of the pitch, Grace Fisk and former Chelsea player Gilly Flaherty will be given the unenviable task of having to protect keeper Mackenzie Arnold from the Blues’ firepower.

Previously: The Blues came away 3-2 winners in December, in large part thanks to Sam Kerr’s aforementioned hat-trick.