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Blues book semi final berth
 Women's Football News 28 Nov 2012
 
Blues book semi final berth - 28 Nov 2012 - Women's Football NewsChelsea Res 4 Lincoln Ladies Res 1
Chelsea Reserves progressed to the semi finals of the FA Women's Premier Reserve Section League Cup with a 4-1 win over Lincoln Reserves at Cobham. 
 
The final score in no way reflects an even contest of good quality on a pitch which defied the elements to provide an excellent playing surface. Chelsea had the edge in finishing to seal their win after conceding early on but in all other aspects the two sides were well matched.
 
After a opening round confined mainly to midfield it was the visitors who took an early lead from the lively Martha Harris who cut inside and lashed a shot past Steph Abbott from 15 yards on eight minutes.
 
Chelsea reacted well and created good scoring opportunities chiefly through the pace and power of Karin Muya who shot just wide then set up a good opening sidefooted wide from close range. The Blues defence still had their hands full, however, and only a good tackle by Hannah MacKenzie denied Martha Harris a shot on goal.
 
The equaliser on 25 minutes was a fine solo effort from Muya cutting in from the right and hitting a powerful shot high ino the net, a fine finish similar in execution to Lincoln's opener.
 
Nicole Matthews went close for Chelsea, rolling a shot inches wide, but on 33 minutes Blues went in front when MacKenzie powerfully headed in a corner, an advantage they held comfortably to the break.
 
A fine save by the Lady Imps keeper Emily Malpass on 48 minutes, diving low to her left to push away a powerful low shot by Emma Plewa, kept the visitors in the game and they then pushed forward in search of the equaliser.
 
Lincoln went close from a header from a corner and Chelsea's Hayley Fowle made a fine saving tackle after a weak clearance left Martha Harris with another sight of goal. The closest Lincoln came to levelling was when a shot from wide right came back off the bar after 63 minutes.
 
Chelsea's substitutions gave them fresh impetus up front and two goals in quick succession settled the tie around the 80 minute mark. Plewa was again denied by a fine save from Malpass but the ball fell kindly for Muya to net her second from close in. Then the two substitutes combined with Shameeka Fishley setting up Elizabeth Maddison to chip a clever finish beyond Malpass on 82 minutes.
 
To their credit, Lincoln pushed forward to the end and forced a couple of corners but the result was no longer in doubt. With the other three ties falling victim to the weather, Chelsea - who had already disposed of Portsmouth and Cardiff City at their Cobham base - may have to wait a while to find out the identity of their semi final opponents and whether they have a fourth home tie in a row.
 
Chelsea Res: Steph Abbott, Hannah Blundell, Lauren Drewett, Hayley Fowle, Zoe Greener, Hannah MacKenzie, Nicole Matthews, Karin Muya, Rachel Palmer, Emma Plewa, Connie Short. Subs: Lucy Caunt, Shameeka Fishley, Elizabeth Maddison, Aishah Bolaji, Jessica Myers.

Lincoln Ladies Res: Emily Malpass, Lydia Clark, Holly Crosby, Sophie Crosby, Emily Harris, Suzanne Hill, Katie Jackson, Katy Thornley, Emily Roberts, Martha Harris, Stacey Aisthorpe. Subs: Paige Wright, Sally Cairns. 

 
(Report by Patrick Higgins)

 
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