Saints return with a bang in Women's FA Cup

By Rob Bird time Sun 13 Dec AFC Bournemouth CST vs Saints
Photo by Isabelle Field | Ella Pusey
Sun 13 Dec 1PM
Womens FA Cup
Pusey [11'] [70'] Panting [8'] Kendall [4'] [30']
Referee: Colin Deadman | Venue: Verwood FC | Attendance: 0

Southampton FC Women book their place in the Vitality Women’s FA Cup second round proper, following an emphatic 5-0 victory away to AFC Bournemouth at Potterne Park.

Southampton’s first goal came just four minutes into the game, Lucia Kendall tucking home from close distance following a defensive mix-up from Bournemouth.

The lead was then doubled on eight minutes, Rachel Panting finishing her superb solo run with a curling, dipping long shot into the top right corner.

Just three minutes later Saints struck again, Ella Pusey volleying home captain Phoebe Williams’ floated cross at the far post.

Pusey then turned creator for Saints’ fourth, cutting the ball back to a screaming Kendall, whose second finish of the day was calm into the bottom left corner on the half-hour mark.

Pusey also bagged herself a brace on 70 minutes, her right footed shot proving too powerful for Bournemouth goalkeeper Katie Scadding, who despite getting fingertips to the effort couldn’t keep it out.

WIMBORNE, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 13:  during The Vitality Women’s FA Cup, first-round proper match between AFC Bournemouth and Southampton FC Women's at Verwood FC on December 13, 2020 in, Wimborne, England. (Photo by Isabelle Field/Southampton FC via Getty Images)
Ella Pusey celebrates following her opener.

Southampton exerted their dominance on the game from the very first whistle, in a style that emphasised the superior standard in which they play over South Coast rivals Bournemouth.

If there was any speculation the formidable wind and rain could play into the hands of an upset, it was quickly silenced after just four minutes, with Kendall managing to slot the ball home from close range after Freeland’s effort was blocked, although Steve Cuss will be infuriated the original cross wasn’t defended better by his players.

With an early goal undoubtedly harmful to Bournemouth’s game plan, Saints quickly struck again only four minutes later, Panting picking up the ball in her own half and driving down the left, before cutting in and curling an exceptional long shot beyond the outstretched Scadding and into the top corner.

The last meeting between the two sides was just over a year ago, when Marieanne Spacey-Cale’s team rolled out 7-1 winners, a feat Saint’s clearly felt confident in matching, as Williams’ cross was met confidently by Pusey at the far post, to make the score 3-0 after just 11 minutes.

Bournemouth began to grow into the game with around 20 minutes gone, warming the gloves of Saints goalkeeper Kayla Rendell with a well struck, but predictable free-kick from Hannah Bennett.

20201213 Bournemouth vs SFC Women
Saints celebrate during a dominant afternoon.

Spacey-Cale insisted pre-match that her team were “sharp” despite having not played for five weeks due to the second national lockdown, a statement further strengthened on 30 minutes, as Pusey used her pace to beat Katelyn Wort down the right and cut her cross back to Kendall, who tucked her shot into the bottom left corner for a second time.

Neither manager opted for any changes at halftime, and in light of their decisions the tempo of the match visibly slowed, although a smartly struck free-kick from Shelly Provan on 53 minutes did test the awareness of Scadding, who did well to palm the ball away from danger.

Despite solid work from Bournemouth in midfield, clever feet from Kendell allowed her to drive away from a flurry of sliding challenges and pick out a perfect through-ball to Pusey, who unsurprisingly made no mistake with a finish that proved too powerful for the fingertips of Scadding and rustled the net for a fifth time on 70 minutes.

The final five minutes gave a chance for RTC graduate Emilie Castagna to enjoy a first team debut, as she replaced Georgie Freeland.

Despite a blasted effort from Bournemouth’s Molly Clark in the dying moments, which was well held by Rendell, Southampton did well to see out the game with minimal scares; utilising their immense short-passing play to maintain possession and ensure the clean sheet was kept intact.

With second round matches due to commence January 3rd 2021, Saints’ focus now switches back to league duties, which will see them on the road once more next Sunday in preparation for a tough test against Cheltenham Town.


Saints win again on fans' return to St Mary's
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Katie Scadding (GK)
Abby Jones
Emma Davis
replace Larissa White (57′)
Rebecca Barron
Katelyn Wort
replace Charlotte Eastman (75′)
Maisy Smith
Katie Kingshott
replace Rebecca Miles (68′)
Hannah Bennett (C)
Gemma Hillier
Molly Clark
Helen Corbin
replace Chloe Newton (57′)
Rebecca Miles
Chloe Newton
Rosie Eden
Ruth Topping
Charlotte Eastman
Larissa White
Terri Harvey


Kayla Rendell (GK)
Shelly Provan
Georgie Freeland
replace Emilie Castagna (85′)
Phoebe Williams (C)
Ella Pusey goal goal
Kelly Snook
Charley Evans
Caitlin Morris
Lucia Kendall goal goal
Rachel Panting goal
replace Sophia Pharoah (60′)
Milly Mott
replace Alisha Ware (60′)
Kelly Fripp
Alisha Ware
Sophia Pharoah
Sara Luce
Ellie Chaffe
Emilie Castagna
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