FA Cup match report Arsenal Ladies 2 Everton Ladies 0: Shelley Kerr goes out on a high note after Arsenal win 13th Cup

 

Stadium MK

As swansongs go it was sweet indeed for the departing Arsenal manager Shelley Kerr, who a week after giving notice of her resignation with her team at the foot of the Women’s Super League saw her last game in charge marked by a fine performance that brought the Gunners the FA Women’s Cup for the 13th time.

Everton remain the only team to have beaten Arsenal in an FA Cup final, which they did four years ago, but with Arsenal captain Kelly Smith in commanding form there was never any real doubt about the Cup’s 2014 destination from the moment she fired her side in front from a free-kick in the 15th minute.

Smith then set up the Japanese midfielder Yukari Kinga to score the second goal 16 minutes into the second half. At 35 the England star was the oldest player on the pitch, but without question she was also the most influential.

“Kelly’s just incredible,” said the former Scotland captain Kerr. “I don’t think you guys in England will ever see another player like her, she’s fantastic. There were other brilliant individual performances but it was also a great team performance. We thoroughly deserved the win.”

Everton manager Andy Spence was fulsome in his praise of Arsenal’s performance. “The credit has to go to Arsenal,” he said. “They showed their experience from the point Kelly scored a fantastic free-kick. It’s important we learn from this so next time we get to a final we’ll be in a better position to deal with the occasion.”

Arsenal took control after Everton had almost scored through striker Nikita Parris’ angled drive. Kerr’s side were unlucky not to take the lead in the 10th minute, when winger    Rachel Yankey’s 25-yard shot bounced off the post.

Arsenal had to wait only five minutes more for the opening goal, however, Smith beautifully arcing her free-kick into the corner of the net.

Everton captain Michelle Hinnigan fired in a long-range effort but goalkeeper Emma Byrne made the save. It was Byrne’s opposite number Rachel Brown-Finnis, however, who was by far the busier of the two goalkeepers.

Brown-Finnis made a good save on the goal-line from the striker Danielle Carter a minute before half-time, but she was well beaten soon after the interval. Fortunately for the Everton keeper, Smith’s curling 15-yard shot bounced back off the far post and away from danger.

There was no way back for Everton when Smith’s pass set up Kinga to slide the ball home from 12 yards. Arsenal almost got a third goal in stoppage time when Emma Mitchell struck the bar.  Arsenal (4-2-3-1): Byrne; A Scott, Stoney, Fahey, Mitchell; Bailey (Williamson, 75), Kinga; Carter, Smith, Yankey; Ohno. Substitutes not used: Chamberlain, Murray, Weir, Ayisi.

Everton (4-1-4-1): Brown-Finnis; V Jones (Murphy, 62), Johnson, George, Greenwood; Hinnigan; K Jones, M Turner (Whipp, 71), Chaplen, D Turner (Whelan, 82); Parris. Substitutes not used: Walsh, Magill.

Referee: M Atkinson (West Yorkshire).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

The secret CIA Starbucks

The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

One million Britons using food banks

Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

How to run a restaurant

As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
10 best tote bags

Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

Paul Scholes column

I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...