Louise Quinn scored a last-minute winner to book our place in the SSE Women’s FA Cup final at Wembley.
The game looked like it would be settled in extra-time after a Chloe Kelly’s penalty cancelled out Danielle Carter’s opener, but Quinn’s towering header right at the death means we’ve now reached the final of the competition for a record 16th time.
The opening stages were tightly contested, with both sides showing great defensive organisation. But in the 25th minute, a fine passing move from back to front saw us take the lead.
Dominique Janssen picked out Heather O’Reilly on the right wing, who beat her marker, drove to the by-line and picked out Danielle Carter with a low driven pass. Carter made no mistake in finding the back of the net from six yards out.
From that point we dominated play for the remainder of the first half, creating a number of half-chances for ourselves, and limiting the Toffees to a few long-distance efforts.
Jordan Nobbs came close with a curling effort, before Lisa Evans and O’Reilly combined on the edge of the box, with the latter firing just wide.
We kicked off the second 45 with the same attacking intensity, but it was Everton who provided the first scare of the half. If it wasn’t for a stunning last-ditch tackle from Quinn, Kelly would have certainly raced through on goal.
But then in the 67th minute, the referee judged that Olivia Chance had been fouled inside the box and pointed to the spot. Former Gunner Kelly stepped up and fired the ball beyond the reach of Sari van Veenendaal.
It was a difficult blow to take, but the response of our side was testament to their attitude and ability.
Kim Little dragged an effort wide from 18-yards out, before Vivianne Miedema took the ball down inside the box, turned and fired just over the bar. We continued to pile on the pressure right till the end, and deep into stoppage time came our reward.
A dangerous corner by Nobbs was hooked into the six-yard box, and there was Quinn to head us into another SSE Women’s FA Cup final at Wembley.
WHAT IT MEANS
We'll compete with Chelsea in a repeat of the 2016 SSE Women's FA Cup final, for a chance to lift the trophy for a record 15th time at Wembley on Saturday, May 5.
We must now prepare for our home clash with Reading in the Women’s Super League, which will take place on Wednesday, April 18. Kick-off is at 7.30pm.
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