The Adobe Women's FA Cup

Manchester City book SSE Women's FA Cup Final spot with win over Liverpool

Manchester City will face Birmingham City in the SSE Women's FA Cup final

Monday 17 Apr 2017
Lawley's low strike was the difference as City book Wembley final.

Steph Houghton believes her side produced a polished display from the first minute to the last, as Melissa Lawley’s strike was enough for Manchester City to beat Liverpool and book their place in the SSE Women’s FA Cup final.

City can win five trophies in the next nine months, but they did not have it all their own way against an impressive and resilient Liverpool side.

However, Lawley fired home in the second half to set up a date at Wembley, and Houghton admits they set the record straight after last year’s semi-final loss at Chelsea.

Man City 1-0 Liverpool
  • SSE Women's FA Cup
  • Semi-Final
  • Monday 17 April 2017
  • Academy Stadium
  • by Mark Davies
“I think for us it was about controlling the game from start to finish. We learnt a massive lesson last year in the SSE Women’s FA Cup and we didn't want a repeat so we knew what we had to do,” she said. 

“It was heartbreaking to lose in the last minute last season so that was probably on our minds in the build-up to this one. 

“We were playing against a good team this afternoon, so to concede no chances like we did against the likes of Tash Harding and Shanice van der Sanden is obviously very pleasing as a defender but I think we controlled to match in all areas of the pitch which is good. 

“We played the football we knew we could, we knew we'd see a lot of the ball but it was our job to make that count and thankfully we did and I felt we were very much the deserved winners.” 

In a scrappy first half, Liverpool nearly found themselves ahead in the second minute as Kate Longhurst's cross hit the post with goalkeeper Karen Bardsley beaten.

The home side gained the initiative thereafter, Lawley had space in the box but she shot straight at Siobhan Chamberlain. 

Lucy Bronze was facing her old side, and she saw her goal-bound effort blocked by Gemma Bonner after 20 minutes as the home enjoyed the majority of possession.

Liverpool were holding firm however, and Tash Harding found Katie Zelem on the counter-attack, but her effort was well blocked just before the break. 

Liverpool sat deep and invited pressure, and only minutes later were they behind, as Lawley's struck hard and low and into the net from 20 yards.

City were rampant, and nearly added a second shortly after; Carli Lloyd had time to turn in the area, but the American's shot was comfortable for Chamberlain. 
Lloyd again went close on 74 minutes, heading over from a Lawley's free kick. 

Tash Harding's strike in added time was as close as Liverpool came, before Lloyd nearly wrapped it up for City with a fine strike from 20 yards which flashed wide.

“You're always going to be disappointed when you lose a game like this. It was a difficult game, I felt at half time the game-plan was working,” said Liverpool boss Scott Rogers.

“We were frustrating them and even into the second half their chances were limited. 

“I just don't feel we quite got to our levels on the counter-attack and in possession but I can't fault the girls, they've worked incredibly hard to get here, it's an achievement in itself to reach the semi-final.”

Tickets for The Final are already on sale and children can attend for free, thanks to The FA’s partnership with SSE.

Adult tickets are priced £15 and group booking and Charter Standard discounts apply.

Tickets can be bought via or by calling 0844 826 2010.

Manchester City (4-3-3): Karen Bardsley; Lucy Bronze, Steph Houghton, Abbie McManus, Demi Stokes; Keira Walsh, Jill Scott, Carli Lloyd; Melissa Lawley, Izzy Christiansen, Jane Ross.

Substitutes: Nikita Parris for Christiansen 66, Toni Duggan for Ross 73.

Substitutes not used: Marie Hourihan, Tessel Middag, Georgia Stanway.

Liverpool (4-4-2): Siobhan Chamberlain; Ash Hodson, Gemma Bonner, Casey Stoney, Alex Greenwood; Sophie Ingle, Kate Longhurst, Katie Zelem, Niamh Charles; Tash Harding, Shanice Van der Sanden.

Substitutes: Caroline Weir for Zelem 69, Ali Johnson for Charles 69.

Substitutes not used: Danielle Gibbons, Amy Rodgers, Meg Taylor.

Referee: Sarah Garratt

Attendance: 3,059

By FA Staff