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  • Writer's pictureBy Paul Lagan at Kingsmeadow Stadium

It what you do with the ball that counts as Blues score twice to beat posession-ladened Arsenal 2-0

By Paul Lagan at Kingsmeadow Stadium

Chelsea 2 v Arsenal 0

Sophie Ingle and Sam Kerr were the difference with their strikes as current holders Chelsea booked their place in the sixth round of the FA Cup with a 2-0 win over Arsenal.

The visitors had enough posession of the ball to make life difficult for the west Londoners, but there was an lack of clinical finishing by the north Londoners that was their ultimate undoing.

Two philosophies were on display at KIngsmeadow, the beautiful game and the successful game.

Arsenal were the owners of the first, Chelsea the second. It’s Chelsea who are still in the competition.

A brilliant save by Ann-Katrina Berger prevented the Blues from going behind after just 51 seconds when Frida Maanum broke free. Her right-footed curler was expertly tipped over by the German goalkeeper for a corner

A mix-up between Berger and Millie Bright almost resulted in an own-goal on 14 minutes when Katie McCabe’s left byline cross caused confusing between the pair. Thankfully for the home side, there was no Arsenal player following up.

Maanum should have scored on 18 minutes when a long ball beat the Chelsea rearguard. The striker outpaced Magda Eriksson, took one touch, but skied the ball, over Berger’s crossbar.

But against the run of play, Chelsea scored two minutes later.

A breakaway saw the ball picked up by Jelena Cankovic, along with Lauren James she fed the ball to Ingle In at the edge of the Arsenal penalty area.

The Wales midfielder produced the perfect left-footed curler that Manuela Zinsberger could only tip on into the back of her net.

A quick break by Stina Blackstenius on 39 minutes almost reaped dividends for the visitors, but her ball to Maanum was just too strong and the ball drifted away for a thrown in.

Berger made a double save three minutes before the break as yet another breakaway from the north Londoners saw Chelsea’s defence crumble.

But Berger was defiant in her actions, stopping Maanum and Blacksenius.

There were no changes by either side at half-time.

The nature of the game continued with Arsenal almost in total control in terms of posession, but again it was the Blues who struck the decisive blow in front of goal on 55 minutes. Kerr broke free and cooly slotted home to double the home side’s lead.

Emma Hayes made her first change on 71 minutes - Jess Carter replacing Eve Perisset.

Berger’s first save of the second half was a simple one from a Laura Wienroither right-foot drive on 73 minutes.

James and Cankovic were replaced with six minutes left on the clock, Jessie Fleming and Johanna Rytting Kaneryd came on.

That action was to see out the game, which the home side did successfully.

The pair meet again next weekend in the League Cup final at Selhurst Park.

Teams: Chelsea, Berger, Bright, Ingle, James, Reiten, Perisset, Eriksson, Kerr, Charles, Cuthbert, Cankovic

Subs: Musovic, Carter, Leupolz, Fleming, Mjelde, Kaneryd, Buchanan

Arsenal, Zinsberger, Souza, Williamson, Catley, Little, Maanum, Walti, McCabe, Foord, Blackstenius, Wienroither

Referee: Abigail Byrne


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