After taking a punch to the gut last weekend when Wolfsburg knocked them out in the semifinal of the Women’s Champions League, Chelsea came to Wembley on a mission on Saturday and dominated Arsenal 3-1 to take home their second Women’s FA Cup and keep alive their hunt for a domestic double.
Two goals from Player of the Match Romana Bachmann and a decisive score from Player’s Player of the year Fran Kirby offset Arsenal’s lone goal in an action-packed second half. And then Chelsea captain Katie Chapman lifted her record tenth (10th!) FA Cup trophy — second with Chelsea, to go along with four for Arsenal, two for Fulham, and one each for Charlton and Millwall.
Katie Chapman has now won 10 (TEN) FA Cups. More than any other footballer, male or female, in the rich history of the English game.— Chelsea Youth (@chelseayouth) May 5, 2018
What an incredible achievement.
In front of a Women’s FA Cup Final record crowd of 45,423, the first half played out to a frustrating scoreless draw.
But the Blues came out of the break with a vengeance and within two minutes the old firm of Ji & Kirby combined to spring Bachmann in the box and she scored with a tremendous finish to give Chelsea a lead they would never relinquish.
Ramona Bachmann Scores Goal to put Chelsea 1 up, Video courtesy of: BBC 1, FA Women's Cup Final 2018 #SSEWomensFACup #womensfootball #football #soccer @SSEWomensFACup #WeAreTheArsenal #AWFC #ChelseaLFC #CLFC @bachmannr10 pic.twitter.com/A6HDNZCi8e— WomensSoccerUnited (@WSUasa) May 5, 2018
As the hour mark struck, so did Bachmann for her second goal, running in from the right, given too much space in the top corner of the box and burying a deflected curler in the far top corner.
Arsenal clawed one back in the 73rd minute to cut the lead to one.
But just three minutes later the two-goal margin was restored as Fran Kirby did what Fran Kirby does. It was her 22nd goal in 28 games in all competitions this season.
Multiple substitutions followed but Arsenal were incapable of mounting anything but the occasional foray into Chelsea’s defense and, after five added minutes spent mostly with Ji and Kirby killing the ball in Arsenal’s corner, the FA Cup was safely in Blues hands once again. The Ladies join the Youth and hopefully the men’s team in a couple weeks as
FA Chelsea Cup winners this season.
It was a great day for all and a great turnout, too, with the record crowd giving Wembley a true big-match feel fit for the occasion. The atmosphere was tremendous, the crowd noise constant.
No FA Cup victory report is complete with That Moment, the hoisting of the Cup. So here it is.
Chelsea LFC aren’t done with their season. And Chelsea FC aren’t done with Wembley, either. For the Ladies, there’s still the Women’s Super League to win. With four matches remaining, Chelsea and Manchester City are on equal points. But after a 6-1 outburst against Bristol City on Thursday, the northerners have a two-goal edge in goal difference.
As for Wembley, in two weeks we’ll be back to fight Manchester United for the men’s FA Cup trophy. If we can get
Bachmann Hazard to score two and Kirby Giroud to score another, then surely we’ll be climbing those famous steps again to hoist another trophy.