Chelsea star Karen Carney insists a place in the SSE Women’s FA Cup quarter finals is the first of many steps the club are taking to ensure they can replicate last season’s success after their 4-1 win over Doncaster Rovers Belles.
Rovers had taken the lead on Sunday afternoon through Jess Sigsworth before an own goal by Leandra Little and strikes from Carney, Ji So-Yun and Eniola Aluko ensured their progression to the sixth round.
“I think you’ve got to try and top what Chelsea did last year, haven’t you?” Carney said.
SSE Women's FA Cup
Sunday 20 March 2016
Winners receive £600 from prize fund
“When Chelsea came after me in the winter break that was their emphasis: to regain everything that they had. And it’s started here.
“It was key to get a win under the belt and Doncaster, fair play, were very, very good, and made it very difficult for us to play. It wasn’t until late on that we got the result.”
Last year’s beaten Finalists Notts County beat Durham 3-1 thanks to a double from Rachel Williams and another from Ellen White, with Beth Hepple grabbing a consolation.
And Williams is excited by the prospect of Notts County’s front three.
She said: "The more that the front three of Ellen, Jess [Clarke] and myself play together, the better understanding we have, and we get know what each of us are going to do both on and off the ball. It can only get easier for us and the team, and we've just got to progress now.”
Arsenal were made to work harder for their place in the last eight as they needed penalties to beat Birmingham City.
Former Arsenal striker Freda Ayisi scored for the Blues and the Gunners’ Danielle Carter levelled in normal time before Jordan Nobbs converted the deciding penalty to make it 5-3 in the shoot-out.
Nobbs said: “We made life a bit harder for ourselves today but it’s always nice to get the first game out of the way.
“We know we can play a lot better than that even though we’ve come away with a victory.”
And Brooke Chaplen is starting to dream of Wembley after her two goals helped Sunderland reach the sixth round with a 2-0 victory at Yeovil Town.
“It’s a good thing to think that we are only a couple of games from Wembley, so if we go into every game thinking that we need to win and take each game as it comes it’s an exciting tournament,” Chaplen said.
Hannah George scored the only goal of the game in Aston Villa’s win over Everton, while Jade Boho-Sayo found the net on her debut and Emma Follis also got her name on the scoresheet in Reading’s 2-0 victory over Millwall.
This year's SSE Women's FA Cup Final will take place at Wembley Stadium on Saturday 14 May, and thanks to The FA's partnership with SSE, all children will be able to attend for free.
Adult tickets are priced £15 and group bookings and charter standard discounts are also available.
Tickets for The Final are on sale now via TheFA.com/Tickets or by calling 0844 826 2010.