Chelsea Women’s route to the Continental Cup semi-finals as they take on West Ham

Chelsea continue their defence of the FA Women’s Continental Tyres League Cup on Wednesday when they face West Ham United in a London derby for a spot in this year’s final.

At the City Ground in Nottingham last February, Emma Hayes’ side beat Arsenal to pick up the Conti Cup for the first time in their history.

A win on Wednesday evening would see them face either Bristol City or Leicester City at Vicarage Road on Sunday, March 14.

Chelsea and West Ham met in the league before the winter break, a Sam Kerr hat-trick securing a 3-2 win for the Blues.

Tournament so far

Chelsea coasted to the top of their group, finishing above Arsenal, Tottenham and London City Lionesses – even though their postponed game against the Championship side was not played after an independent tribunal determined that the fixture should not take place.

Then, in a hectic quarter-final away to Manchester City, Chelsea were 4-2 victors. Lauren Hemp scored for the hosts in the 85th minute, putting them ahead, but Niamh Charles levelled deep in additional time.

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In extra-time, Guro Reiten got herself on the scoresheet before Sophie Ingle netted an incredible first-time strike from distance.

Key player

Norwegian winger Guro Reiten is Emma Hayes’ side’s top scorer in the competition, having recorded three goals so far plus numerous assists. Even as a late substitute against Manchester City, she was arguably the most influential player of the match

Melanie Leupolz, who scored the first goal in the quarter-final, also had a good game in that match and helped to solidify the squad through the middle. There is danger all over the park in this side, who set a record with their 4-0 Women’s Super League victory over Aston Villa, their 32nd unbeaten league match in a row.

The opposition

New manager Olli Harder took over from Matt Beard over the festive period, and has trimmed the squad, with Alisha Lehmann and Cho So-Yun joining…


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