Holders Chelsea continued their defence of the Vitality Women’s FA Cup with a comfortable 3-1 victory over Reading.
First-half strikes from Jess Carter and Maren Mjelde from the spot put the Blues two to the good at the break before Guro Reiten added a third with 40 minutes still to play.
Sanne Troelsgaard pulled one back for the Royals on 70 minutes, but it was too little, too late for the hosts who exit the competition after their deepest run since 2020.
Both sides started brightly in Berkshire, with Troelsgaard flashing a shot across the face of goal for the hosts, while Niamh Charles curled just wide fore the visitors.
Chelsea got the breakthrough halfway through the first period, Carter sneaking in at the back post to latch onto Reiten’s deep cross into the box and tap home from close range.
The visitors doubled their lead soon after, this time from the penalty after Reiten was fouled by Brooke Hendrix. Mjelde stepped up and made no mistake from 12 yards, sending Grace Moloney the wrong way.
The delivery from @guro_reiten 🪄— Vitality Women's FA Cup (@VitalityWFACup) March 19, 2023
On a plate for @_JessCarter to break the deadlock!#WomensFACup @ChelseaFCW pic.twitter.com/e0iumSzeMH
The hosts thought they had found a way back into the game just three minutes later as Troelsgaard found the back of the net only for the offside flag to be raised.
Charlie Wellings also came close for the home side but she could not direct her header on target from inside the box.
Chelsea took their two-goal lead into the break but Reading continued to pose a threat, with Dane Troelsgaard a constant danger to the Blues’ defence.
But Emma Hayes’ side took full control of the cup tie just five minutes after the break, as Reiten finished off a superb team move.
Johanna Rytting Kaneryd sliced the Reading defence open with an inch perfect pass to Alsu Abdullina, who unselfishly squared to leave Reiten the simplest of finishes into an empty net.
Oh wow, that pass from Kaneryd 😮💨— Vitality Women's FA Cup (@VitalityWFACup) March 19, 2023
A brilliant team goal from @ChelseaFCW ✨#WomensFACup pic.twitter.com/20rDMb7phO
The hosts kept pushing for a way back into the match and were rewarded for their endeavours with 20 minutes to play.
Good work down the right from Wellings saw the forward find Troelsgaard in the box, before the Dane produced a superb turn and finish to fire past Zecira Musovic.
However, it was not enough to force a grandstand finish as Chelsea marched on to another semi-final.
Great work from @ReadingFCWomen 👏— Vitality Women's FA Cup (@VitalityWFACup) March 19, 2023
Sanne Troelsgaard with serious composure to turn and finish 🌟#WomensFACup pic.twitter.com/2TgiOuzzJD