Another trophy for Arsenal Ladies
Arsenal Ladies lifted their 12th FA Women's Cup on Sunday thanks to a comprehensive 3-0 victory over Bristol Academy at the Keepmoat Stadium. Steph Houghton struck first blood with a powerful header in the second minute and Bristol had goalkeeper Siobhan Chamberlain to thank for keeping the scoreline respectable for the next hour. Jordan Nobbs doubled the Gunners' lead with her header on 72 minutes before Ellen White capitalised on six minutes of added time - awarded for Lucy Staniforth's injury - to guarantee glory with a late tap-in. Arsenal took the lead with the first attack of the game, Rachel Yankey roaming down the left to pick out Houghton, who headed beyond Chamberlain at the far post. Five minutes later Nikki Watts smashed over the crossbar before Chamberlain kept White out with a fine save. In the 17th minute, an early cross bounced across to an unmarked White, who connected only for Chamberlain to instinctively fling up a glove. Nobbs soon raced up the right flank to blast across Chamberlain and against the far post, with the England keeper just managing to snaffle the rebound. She then produced a flying stop on Alex Scott to leave the Gunners frustrated at half-time. Gunners number one Emma Byrne survived a scare in scooping a Staniforth free-kick around a post as play resumed. Staniforth's game, however, was over on the hour mark. The Bristol midfielder twisted her knee when controlling the ball and, after a long break in play, she left the pitch on a stretcher. The crowd were subdued but soon leapt to their feet as Arsenal scored their second. In a mirror image of Houghton's opener, Nobbs rose on the left edge of the six-yard box to nod home Gemma Davison's cross from deep on the right. Spanish playmaker Laura Del Rio soon teed up compatriot Natalia de Pablos for an overhead kick that sailed just over but the Vixens had left themselves wide open by going gung-ho for a consolation goal. It was no surprise, then, as White rubberstamped Arsenal's triumph by converting Nobbs' spilled shot four minutes into time added on.
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