FA Cup Final: Sam Kerr strike lifts Chelsea over Man United

Chelsea's Sam Kerr celebrates after scoring in the 2023 FA Cup Final.
Chelsea's Sam Kerr celebrates after scoring in the 2023 Vitality Women's FA Cup Final against Manchester United at Wembley Stadium on May 14, 2023. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Emma Haye’s side relished FA Cup glory for the third time in as many years after a 1-0 win over Manchester United.

Line ups

Manchester United: Earps; Batlle, Le Tissier, Turner, Blundell (Garcia, 79’), Ladd (Thomas, 90+1), Toone (Mannion, 79’), Zelem, Galton, Parris (Williams, 61’) and Russo. 

Unused Subs: Baggaley, Boe-Risa, Cascarino, Naalsund, Riviere. 

Chelsea: Berger; Perisset, Mjelde, Eriksson, Charles (Carter, 72’), Leupolz (Ingle, 57’), Cuthbert, James (Buchanan, 88’), Fleming (Harder, 57’), Reiten and Kerr. 

Unused Subs: Musovic, Abdullina, Cankovic, Kaneryd and Svitkova.

How the FA Cup final unfolded

Manchester United were quick out of the blocks in the Wembley sunshine as Leah Galton scored within 20 seconds. Unfortunately for the Reds, the goal was disallowed for offside during the build-up. 

The Reds dominated the match’s opening stages with a fair few chances falling their way. Millie Turner’s shot from close range came the closest to finding the opener Chelsea’s Ann-Katrin Berger was able to stretch an arm out to deny the United defender. 

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A few moments later, Lauren James had an opportunity to give Chelsea the lead. Mary Earps was equal to the challenge and tipped the header onto the post to stop James from scoring against her former club. 

After a gritty and battling display from both teams in the first half, the scoreline remained level at the interval. 

Harder super sub

Ten minutes into the second half, Chelsea made their first substitution of the afternoon. This important change was the introduction of Pernille Harder in to replace Jessie Fleming.

The Danish international was straight into the thick of the action and had a shot on target within her first couple of touches of the ball. Luckily for United, the power was taken out of the shot and Earps was able to safely gather.

Harder then provided the assist for the match-winning goal in the 68th minute. She sent a perfect low cross into the onrushing Sam Kerr. Kerr’s finish was her third consecutive goal in the Women’s FA Cup final. 

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Mark Skinner’s side did try and grab a late equaliser. Lucia Garcia’s cross to the back post was nodded down into an area for Galton to have a go but Chelsea had players defending on the line. 

FA Cup 2023 smashing record attendance

Sam Kerr and Chelsea were not the only ones setting records at Wembley. 77,390 fans were on hand for the 2023 edition of the Women’s FA Cup final. This is a new record for the competition and a new world record for a women’s domestic match. 

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Next up

Both sides return to Women’s Super League action. Chelsea take the short trip to West Ham on Wednesday night with kick-off coming at the later time of 8:15 p.m. BST. Meanwhile, Manchester United welcome neighbours Manchester City to Leigh Sports Village. The highly anticipated Manchester Derby takes place next Sunday at 6:45 p.m. BST. Both games are available to watch across Sky Sports channels in the UK. 

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