Sunday 14 January 2018

Arsenal strike late to knock Reading out of the cup

Two goals in the final 10 minutes sent Arsenal through to the Continental Tyres Cup final

FA WSL Continental Tyres Cup match
14:00, Sunday 14 January 2018
Wycombe Wanderers FC

Reading FC Women Goal Scorers: Chaplen 7', Bruton 70'

Arsenal Goal Scorers: Mead 13', Meidema 77', Nobbs 82'

Arsenal scored two late goals to overcome a tough Reading side and reach the FA WSL Continental Tyres Cup final.

The visitors struck first as Beth Mead seized upon some slack defending to take the lead with just five minutes on the clock.

Two minutes later Reading struck back with Brooke Chaplen cutting inside and finding the back of the net with a rasping shot.

The hosts, bidding to reach their first ever final grew into the game as the half progressed with Chaplen forcing a good save from the Arsenal goalkeeper Sari van Veenendaal.

The second half was much more of an open affair as both sides committed players forward to gain advantage.

Remi Allen and Danielle Carter both had efforts to regain the lead but found both Van Veenendaal and Grace Moloney in fine form for their respective clubs.

Moloney, deputising for Mary Earps, was instinctive again deep in the second half as Arsenal looked to cut Reading open with neat build up play.

But it was the Royals who took advantage as Lauren Bruton struck from the edge of the area. The hosts looked good value for their lead but found all of their hard work undone, as Viviana Meidama struck to level proceedings.

Just minutes later and Arsenal snatched the winner with Jordan Nobbs capitalising after a brave parry from Moloney.

Arsenal tightened up as Reading pushed to level proceedings late on, Remi Allen seeing the best opportunity of the closing stages head wide.

What they said: 

Reading coach Kelly Chambers said:

“I don’t think we shut up shop well enough, it’s frustrating for me. It’s not as if Arsenal carved us open and scored, we gifted them goals and that’s something we need to work on going forward, because it happened last week against Manchester City.

“Being in the semi-final of the Conti Cup is somewhere we’ve never been at this club. If you look at how long we’ve been in FA WSL 1 it’s a short space of time, and we’re competing with top clubs now. We know we need to keep building the squad to make sure we are beating teams like them.

“We should have beaten them, if we had shut up shop in the last 10 minutes we would have walked into the final.

“I’m hoping the fans can see the direction we are going in, we are creating chances to go 3-1 up and 4-1 up, if we are netting them then no one will be talking about the goals we have leaked.”

Arsenal manager Joe Montemurro said:

“I am very proud, fortunately for the fans it was a great cup tie, our character is to compete and work hard, if that is how we do things, then I’m happy.

“The reality is that we had to make a change when we were down, I credit Reading, they are a very good team, they are very well organised and they put you under pressure in really difficult areas, it was a really tense semi-final and that’s what cup football is all about.

“In the first half we lost our way, they scored and then they got on top after 10 minutes, I thought they were the better team and had chances.

“We had chances as well and the game could have gone either way if one of those chances were taken. They are very good in midfield and a team that is well organised, we have to be smarter.”

Reading 2

Chaplen 7, Bruton 70

Arsenal 3

Mead 5 Meidama 80 Nobbs 83

Reading (4-3-3): Grace Moloney; Rachel Rowe, Kirsty Pearce,Jo Potter, Harriet Scott; Molly Bartrip,Remi Allen,Fara Williams ; Lauren Bruton, Brooke Chaplen, Rachel Furness.

Substitutes: Kirsty Linnett for Bartrip 75

Substitutes not used: Mary Earps,Melissa Fletcher ,Anna Green, Georgia Clifford

Bookings: Moloney 79

Red Cards: None

Arsenal (4-3-3): Sari Van Veenendaal; Emma Mitchell, Leah Williamson, Gemma Rose, Lisa Evans; Dominique Janssen, Jordan Nobbs, Danielle Van De Donk; Beth Mead,Danielle Carter, Vivianne Meidama

Substitutes: Louise Quinn for Rose 74, Heather O’Reilly for Carter 74

Substitutes not used: Anna Moorhouse, Katie McCabe, Lauren James, Taylor Hinds, Anna Fillbe

Bookings: Rose 55

Red Cards: None

Referee: Ryan Atkin

Attendance: 749

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