Often Partisan

Another Game, Another Win; Blues Ladies v Chelsea Ladies Match Report

There was no cup hangover for Laura Bassett and the girls as they ran out fairly comfortable 4-2 winners against FA Women’s Cup Final opponents Chelsea in last night’s match at the DCS Stadium.

A bumper crowd of 756 were treated to a great game as a slightly changed Blues lineup showed that Saturday’s result was no fluke.

Goals from Jodi Taylor, Karen Carney, Rachel Unitt and Jo Potter were enough to see off a Chelsea side that came back from two goals down early in the second half.

Blues made one change to the XI that started the FA Cup Final, with Eni Aluko coming into the team in place of Kerys Harrop. Visitors Chelsea made three changes with Drew Spence, Ashlee Hincks and Kate Longhurst coming in for Helen Bleazard, Laura Coombs and Katie Sherwood.

Birmingham City Ladies made a flying start to the game as Chelsea once again failed to settle into a rhythm and went 1-0 up in six minutes as a defensive mixup allowed Jodi Taylor to capitalise on a long ball forwards from Chelsea Weston to slot into an empty net.

Karen Carney doubled the lead within 11 minutes with a Chris Burke-esque left footed curling effort into the left corner from just inside the area.

By now Blues looked rampant and Chelsea were struggling to get into the game. However some good pressure saw Blues have to defend valiantly with two great blocks as Chelsea tried to score from range.

Unfortunately, from the resultant corner Chelsea halved the deficit with Gemma Bonner scoring a header from close range on 24 minutes.

As the game progressed Chelsea were in the ascendancy and half time couldn’t come quick enough for Blues Ladies as they fell further and further beneath the cosh.

Chelsea continued the pressure after the break and it wasn’t surprising when they did finally equalise on 53 minutes through Helen Lander.

Blues Ladies are made of stern stuff though and within sixty seconds they were back in front as Rachel Unitt bundled home an effort from 2 yards or so after another scramble at a corner.

Chelsea’s heads dropped a little and Blues kept pushing forwards looking for the goal to kill off the match.

The killer goal did come in the 84th minute, and once again it was a free kick that was Chelsea’s undoing. With Chelsea having conceded a foul just outside the D, slightly to the left of centre of the goal Chelsea keeper Carly Telford was determined not to be undone by a quick one again and she screamed at her defence to stand on the ball whilst she set the wall.

It was to no avail though as Jo Potter drilled the ball into the bottom left corner, having noticed the gap that seemed to have been left between the wall and the left hand post with Telford beaten all ends up.

Blues closed out the game with the panache of a side unbeaten this season and ran out 4-2 winners, closing the gap on league leaders Arsenal to two points.

OP Player of the Match: Jo Potter

Team:

Rebecca Spencer, Chelsea Weston, Laura Bassett (c), Rachel Williams, Eniola Aluko (Isobel Christiansen), Karen Carney, Jo Potter, Jade Moore, Jodi Taylor (Marie Ballard), Rachel Unitt (Kerys Harrop), Emily Westwood.

Subs not used Marie Hourihan, Cristina Torkildsen

Blues Ladies play next on Sunday at Stratford Town’s DCS Stadium against Bristol Academy Women.

Blues Ladies - sponsored by Hollywood Monster

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