FA Cup: Goals galore in 5th Round action

Leah Williamson of Arsenal battles with Guro Reiten of Chelsea.
Leah Williamson of Arsenal battles with Guro Reiten of Chelsea during the Vitality Women's FA Cup Fifth Round match on February 26, 2023. (Photo by Alex Davidson/Getty Images)

With the FA Cup taking over the women’s football calendar for the weekend, 16 sides prepared to face each other to book their spots in the competition’s quarter-final stage.

The Final 16 consisted of nine WSL sides, six Championship teams and Welsh Premier League side Cardiff City. That mixture of talent meant promised a fifth round full of stand-out entertainment.

Manchester United v Durham


Manchester United kicked off the Round of 16 with a resounding victory against Championship side Durham. United opened the scoring just before halftime with Vilde Boe Risa finding the back of the net in the 42nd minute. The hosts would go on to secure a 5–0 win with Leah Galton, Hannah Blundell, Alessia Russo and Nikita Parris all getting their names onto the scoresheet.

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Brighton v Coventry


Brighton didn’t take long to open their account as they welcomed Coventry to Broadfield Stadium. Just 17 minutes in, Elisabeth Terland found the opener. With the hosts holding the slightest advantage well into the second half, it would be the 76th minute before the game slipped away from Coventry’s grasp. Brianna Vissali’s goal was followed by a brace from Geum-Min Lee. This saw Jans Scheuer’s side four to the good by the 90th minute. An own goal from Fran Orthodoxou completed a forgetable Sunday for the visitors. 

Bristol v Manchester City


Bristol’s afternoon was off to a bad start almost instantly. By the 41st minute, Bunny Shaw had already bagged herself a hattrick as the visitors enjoyed almost total dominance. Filippa Angeldahl and Julie Blakstad put the visitors five up by the time Gracie Pearse found a consolation for the Robins. A fourth goal for Shaw alongside a second for Blakstad saw City sitting on a six-goal lead with five minutes left to play. A first senior goal for 17-year-old Jemima Dahou capped off an almost perfect afternoon for the Sky Blues.

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Lewes v Cardiff


Four goals from Lewes No.2 Ellie Mason saw Lewes get off to an almost perfect start. Only a late first-half goal from Ingrid Adland would put a damper on the host’s day. Kenzie Weir’s 89th-minute goal was quickly followed by Aqsa Mushtaq’s in the 92nd minute. The match would finish 6–1 to the hosts, with Mason receiving plenty of plaudits for her performance. 

Charlton v Birmingham


Birmingham travelled to face fellow Championship side Charlton to secure their ticket to the next stage of the FA Cup. With the tie still goalless after the regulation 90, extra time was necessary to separate the two sides. The first and only goal of the game came in the 101st minute. Birmingham’s Ashley Hodson’s run saw the No.11 secure her side’s spot in the Final Eight.

Chelsea v Arsenal


In arguably the most eye-catching fixture of the round, Emma Hayes’ side played host to fellow London club Arsenal. The current FA cup holders went ahead in the 21st minute as Sophie Ingle found the back of the net. Despite several good chances for the visitors they were unable to trouble Ann-Katrin Berger and her defence. A second goal for the hosts through Sam Kerr secured Chelsea’s progression into the next round of the contest as they look to retain their title.

Tottenham v Reading

0–0 (4–5 on penalties)

After a goalless regulation and extra time, the all-WSL clash required penalties to separate the teams. With both sides scoring their first three spot kicks, Kerys Harrop’s effort hitting the crossbar would ultimately be the difference between the two sides. Reading’s slender victory from the spot would see them progress in the competition.

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West Ham v Aston Villa

1–1 (6–7 on penalties)

Rachel Daly’s 50th-minute goal seemed as though it would be enough for Villa to progress into the quarter-finals. However, an injury-time goal for Dagny Brynjarsdottir in the 92nd minute would send the goal to extra time and ultimately penalties. With the shootout seeing both goalkeepers step up to take a spot kick, it would be Hannah Hampton’s effort that would see her side into the hat for the next round.

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