Manchester City Women managed to claim the Women’s FA Cup at Wembley in front of a crowd of just under 40,000 with a 4-1 win over Birmingham City Women, in a game where the losers never really threatened the victors.
Nikita Parris began to cause damage early on in the game for the Manchester City side, managing to shank a cross out of play inside the opening two minutes. A minute later, Izzy Christiansen drove a cross-shot into the box, however, it took a nick off of a Birmingham defender on the way through and was eventually cleared. Just after the 15-minute mark, Manchester City continued to attack with defender Megan Campbell flicking a low corner into the side-netting.
Almost immediately after, Manchester City broke the deadlock when Campbell dinked a free-kick in towards the near post, with England right-back Lucy Bronze arriving, and she powered a header home to give the Mancunians the advantage.
Central midfielder Mayling dragged a 25-yard shot into the hands of City goalkeeper Karen Bardsley, before City doubled their lead. Bronze got the ball out on the right before steaming past Birmingham left-back Meaghan Sargeant and clipped a cross into the middle. Christiansen arrived at the back post and fired into the roof of the net to leave Manchester City two to the good.
Carli Lloyd played a wonderful disguised pass through for Melissa Lawley, whose angled drive was tipped behind at her near post by Berger and from the resulting corner, the ball was worked to Christiansen who whipped a delightful ball in for World Player of The Year Lloyd and she rose to nod home, adding to her impressive records on the big stage by now adding to goals in the World Cup final and the Olympic final as Manchester City went into the break at 3-0 up.
Steph Houghton nodded a corner wide just after the interval, before Demi Stokes managed to slip Parris in on goal, who opened up her body but her curling effort was palmed wide by Berger. Just following the hour mark, Birmingham got their first sight of goal when Ellen White tested Karren Bardsley with a 25-yard drive towards the bottom corner, which was well held by the England shot-stopper.
Houghton headed wide twice more from corners before Birmingham got their consolation goal through substitute Charlie Wellings. Ellie Brazil set the ball back for the striker, who had only been on the pitch for nine minutes, and Wellings expertly drove the ball across Bardsley and into the bottom corner.
Manchester City wrapped it up ten minutes from time though when substitute Toni Duggan put a wonderful pass over to the arriving Jill Scott from midfield. Scott took one touch, showed wonderful feet to get past the covering defender and fired into the top corner to put the game to bed.
FT: Birmingham City Women 1-4 Manchester City Women (Wellings 74-Bronze 18, Christiansen 25, Lloyd 32, Scott 80)
Birmingham City XI: Berger, Harrop, Manion, Sargeant, Mayling, Carter, Hegerberg (Peplow 83), Williams (Stringer 88), White, Ayisi (Wellings 64), Brazil. Unused substitutes: Baggaley, Westwood.
Manchester City XI: Bardsley, Bronze, Houghton, Campbell (McManus 78), Stokes, Scott, Walsh, Christiansen, Parris (Stanway 71), Lloyd, Lawley (Duggan 56). Unused Substitutes: Beattie, Hourihan.
MOTM: Megan Campbell- Megan Campbell’s deliveries were inch-perfect throughout the evening, claiming two assists, with her defensive work also being perfect as she contributed towards the dominant display.