Above: Southampton celebrate their outstanding win over Bristol City in front of a big crowd at St. Mary’s Stadium. Photo: Southampton FC.
By Darrell Allen (31/1/22)
A busy weekend of Vitality Women’s FA Cup action saw 16 ties take place across the weekend.
The first two were on Saturday as Manchester City and Chelsea had no problem progressing ahead of their league meeting with each other next weekend.
Georgia Stanway became Manchester City Women’s top scorer of all the time with her hat trick the highlight of an 8-0 win at tier three Nottingham Forest. A brace from Bunny Shaw and other goals from Caroline Weir, Lauren Hemp, and Filippa Angeldal sealed the win. An impressive crowd of 3,994 gathered at the City Ground.
Chelsea won comfortably 3-1 at Aston Villa. A brace from Guro Reiten and a penalty from Pernille Harder had the visitors in command. Villa got a late consolation goal when Ramona Petzelberger scored from the spot in front of 1,093.
On to Sunday’s 14 ties, and Arsenal overcame FA Women’s Championship side London City Lionesses 1-0. Vivianne Miedema on target.
Step Four Billericay Town took Championship side Coventry United to penalties, but it was the visitors who avoided the upset by winning 4-2 on penalties.
FA Women’s Super League strugglers Birmingham City needed extra time to see off ninth-placed Championship side Sunderland 2-1 after extra time. Veatriki Sarri opened the scoring for the Blues before Keira Ramshaw equalized for Sunderland four minutes from time to force an extra half hour. Lucy Whipp scored the winner in the 100th minute to send the home side through.
Manchester United were 2-0 winners at third-tier Bridgwater United with Hayley Ladd and Ella Toone on target to help them overcome a tricky cup tie.
A dramatic game in Crawley between FAWSL duo Brighton and Hove Albion and Reading saw the visitors get the better of a five-goal thriller. Justine Vanhaevermaet and Olympic Gold medallist Deanne Rose put Reading in control before Emma Koivisto and Kayleigh Green levelled it up for Brighton. Tia Primmer won it for The Royals in the 83rd minute with 638 spectators present.
In an all Championship tie, Durham saw off Blackburn Rovers 3-1 thanks to goals from Beth Hepple, Liz Ejupi, and Sarah Robson. Annabel Blanchard scored for the visitors on the hour but it was no more than a consolation.
Everton, Liverpool, and Charlton Athletic were all big winners.
Anna Anvegard, a brace from Valerie Gauvin, and Claire Emslie were all on target as Everton won 4-0 at third-tier Huddersfield Town in front of a record crowd of 1,168.
A hat trick from Leighanne Robe and goals from Katie Stengel, Meikayla Moore, and Charlotte Wardlaw saw Liverpool beat Lincoln City 6-0, although it was a day to be proud for the fourth tier side who put in an excellent performance.
Championship side Charlton Athletic overcame a potential banana skin winning 6-0 at third-tier Plymouth Argyle. Katie Robinson opened the scoring before second-half strikes from Bethan Roe, Jorja Fox, Lois Roche, Vyan Sampson, and Mia Ross sealed the win in front of 469 fans.
Ipswich Town of tier three overcame a tricky tie at fourth-tier Newcastle United winning 1-0 in front of a superb crowd of 2,700. A solitary goal from Lucy O’Brien was enough to send the Tractor Girls through.
West Ham United were 4-1 winners at Championship side Sheffield United thanks to two goals from Claudia Walker plus single strikes from Megan Filis and Dagný Brynjarsdottir. Bex Rayner was on target for the home side.
There was an upset of sorts as third-tier Southampton beat Bristol City, an FAWSL side last season 1-0 after extra-time thanks to a goal from Ella Morris. However, Southampton is a team on the rise and are expected to be a tier-two side along with Bristol City in the not-too-distant future. The South Coast side were roared on by a superb crowd of 3,638.
Leicester City were victorious in an all-FAWSL clash at Tottenham Hotspur as the hosts took the lead with Angela Addison opening the scoring before Shannon O’Brien equalized for Leicester to force extra time. Sophie Howard and Esmee De Graff scored in the additional half-hour to see the visitors through.
In the day’s final game, it was a 0-0 draw between tier-three West Bromwich Albion and fourth-tier Exeter City which then saw the Midland side progress with a 4-2 win on penalties.