Charlton Ath Women 0 v Chelsea FC Women 4
They huffed and puffed for 44 minutes, but Chelsea eventually saw off dogged Charlton 4-0 to secure a place in the 5th round of the FA cup this afternoon, thanks to a brace of goals from Emily Murphy and Drew Spence, who notched the opener seconds before the half-time whistle.
The contrast in status of the two side could not be overstated.
Chelsea thanks to the support of the men’s club are in sparkling form in the WSL1 - they dispatched champions Arsenal 4-1 last week. They are full-time professionals earning a handsome wage every week.
Charlton are made up of part-timers who work full-time and the odd student. they train three nights a week for a couple of hours. They languish at the wrong end of the Championship - struggling to score let alone win matches.
But the dream of at least taking the match to penalties - not extra time or replays here, was the game plan objective - but it was not to be.
Chelsea’s greater power and stamina - coupled with a determined attitude not to panic saw the west Londoners through.
Chelsea, as expected dominated possession from the first whistle, but took their time to get into an attacking rhythm.
Hannah Blundell had an edge of the penalty area shot, on target, deflected by Chloe Mustaki for a corner.
The Addicks were forced into an early change when Charlie Estcourt was injured crashing into a hoarding - Georgia Griffin replaced her.
On 25 minutes, Deanna Cooper shows strength and determination, forcing goalkeeper Katie Starup into a save.
Another half chance fell to the Blues on 37 minutes, when a swift attack saw Emily Murphy slip the ball to in-running Ramona Bachmann, but the Switzerland striker could only slide the ball to Startup.
That was Bachman’s final contribution as she was substituted by Emma Hayes, who brought on left winger Guro Reiten.
Charlton’s Charley Clifford hacked down Sophie Ingle and got a yellow card from referee Robert Massey-Ellis.
But with seconds on the half remaining Drew Spence was on the spot to slot home from close range.
There were no changes by either side at half time, but the Blues put the tie to bed two minutes after the restart when Murphy saw her initial shot paired away by Startup, but she slotted home the rebound..
It was soon number three when Charlotte Fleming was hauled down in the penalty area, up stepped Drew Spence to send Startup the wrong way.
Murphy smashed home the fourth and her second late on to put the Blues into the hat for the draw to be made tomorrow evening.
Teams: Chelsea, Telford, Blundell, Ingle, Carter, Eriksson, Cooper, Bachmann, Spence, Napier, Fleming, Emily Murphy
Subs: Bright, England, Reiten, Mjelde, Andersson, Berger, Wardlaw
Charlton: startup, Newborough, Coombs, Clifford, Woodham, Estcourt, Griffiths, Legg, Heuchan, Mustaki
Subs: Salgado, Eide, Gardien, Espinosa, Griffin
Referee: Robert Massey-Ellis