Jessy Parker Humphreys wraps up the fifth round of the Women’s FA Cup, where Manchester City scored 10 goals and Chelsea edged Liverpool.
Manchester City dominate Ipswich with the Stanway experiment
Manchester City 10 – Ipswich Town 0
The opportunity for fourth-tier side Ipswich Town to get to play against the Women’s Super League leaders is one the young players who lined up are unlikely to forget, even if it did end in them conceding three hat-tricks from three different players (Pauline Bremer, Jess Park and Georgia Stanway), and a goal from Laura Coombs.
It was most noticeable for being an opportunity to seemingly attempt to play Georgia Stanway in every position on the pitch. With Janine Beckie away, Stanway had been filling in at right-back but she started this game paired at centre-back with Steph Houghton. She was then moved up front later in the game, from which she managed to score three goals, and it was a wonder she wasn’t asked to fill in in goal for the hell of it by the end. While Stanway is clearly a very talented player in a number of positions, the Manchester City management team might be best off deciding where she is best if they want to develop her to the best of her ability.
Chelsea’s individual quality gets them through tricky tie
Chelsea 1 – Liverpool 0
The quality of a top side is often shown in their ability to come through a game where they don’t play particularly well. Many teams have found Liverpool incredibly difficult to break down, even if their poor performances have left them threatened with relegation. Only Arsenal and Sheffield United have managed to score more than two goals against them in a match.
Chelsea partnered Erin Cuthbert upfront with Bethany England, and Cuthbert struggled in the more advanced role, often coming back quite deep to try and pick up the ball leaving England isolated on her own. Guro Reiten and Jonna Andersson offered a constant threat down the left hand side and it was Reiten who showed once again her technical ability to volley in the only goal of the game. Liverpool defended well and didn’t allow Chelsea many opportunities but they created little as well. Sometimes one moment of quality is all you need.
Bizarre Staniforth sending off dominates tight match against former club
Sunderland 0 – Birmingham City 1
For all of Sunderland’s pedigree of producing some of the best English players of the past generation, they have always fallen foul of the FA’s regulations when it comes to being able to maintain their standing within the league system. Despite starting the careers of Steph Houghton, Jill Scott and Beth Mead among others, they have been unable to meet the standards required to maintain their position within the Women’s Super League or Championship. They showed why they have been so highly regarded, pushing WSL strugglers Birmingham right to the very end.
It was only thanks to a free-kick from Lucy Staniforth, who started her senior career as a 16-year-old at Sunderland, and had a second spell at the club up until 2018, that made the difference. Staniforth was promptly sent off for running the length of the pitch to celebrate in front of a Sunderland fan, who was also ejected. Despite Sunderland’s late efforts, and eight minutes of added time, Birmingham progressed, albeit in rather bizarre circumstances.
Everton rout hapless Bristol who simply can’t stop conceding
Bristol City 0 – Everton 5
If Bristol City were supposed to take heart from playing at Ashton Gate, they only had 10 minutes in which to do so before falling behind. As with much of Bristol’s season as soon as they conceded one, it was as if they could not stop. Everton progressed to the FA Cup quarter-finals thanks to goals from Lucy Graham (2), Esme Morgan, Inessa Kaagman, and Hannah Cain. For Bristol, going out is probably a welcome opportunity for them to focus on the league. With Liverpool’s form starting to pick up, it’s looking like either Bristol or Birmingham to be heading for the drop.
Tottenham set up potential London derby by brushing aside Coventry
Coventry United 0 – Tottenham 5
Tottenham barely had to get out of first gear to demolish Coventry and reach the FA Cup quarter-finals for the first time in their history. A hat-trick from Rianna Dean (including two first-half penalties), along with goals from Siri Worm and Lucia Leon showed Spurs to be a class above. It will be a pleasing victory for a side who have had a poor run of form in the WSL recently, with only one win in five. However, to progress any further in the competition they will likely have to do something they have never done before – win a North London derby.
The FA Cup quarter-final draw is as follows:
Crystal Palace or Brighton & Hove Albion vs Birmingham City
Everton vs Chelsea
Arsenal or Lewes vs Tottenham Hotspur
Leicester City or Reading vs Manchester City
Follow Jessy on Twitter at @jessyjph