16 April 2022

Lauren Hemp nets brace as Man City sail past West Ham into Women’s FA Cup final

16 April 2022

England international Lauren Hemp scored twice as Manchester City brushed aside West Ham to book their place in the Vitality Women’s FA Cup final.

Hemp’s 67th-minute goal – the 50th of her club career – and a second in stoppage time cemented a 4-1 semi-final win in Dagenham after Ellen White and Chloe Kelly had struck before the break, with Lisa Evans replying for the stubborn hosts.

The three-times winners will face either Arsenal or Chelsea at Wembley, with the top two in the Women’s Super League fighting it out for the remaining berth on Sunday afternoon.

Manchester City’s Ellen White scores the opening goal at West Ham (John Walton/PA) (PA Wire)

The visitors took the lead with 21 minutes gone when White reacted first to dive and head home, with keeper Mackenzie Arnold desperately scrambling back across her goal after the impressive Keira Walsh’s 25-yard piledriver had come back off the crossbar.

White saw a second equally impressive effort chalked off after the officials ruled that Lucy Bronze had not kept the ball in play before she crossed, and Hemp, who had been well marshalled until that point, fired over as City started to turn the screw.

They got their reward eight minutes before the break when Kelly ran on to Gilly Flaherty’s ill-judged pass across her own penalty area to beat Arnold and make it 2-0.

However, Evans gave the Hammers hope three minutes before the break when, after Alex Greenwood had been dispossessed on halfway, she capitalised on hesitancy in the City defence to round Ellie Roebuck and reduce the deficit.

White saw a 52nd-minute header correctly ruled out for offside as the visitors looked to kill off the game, but West Ham defended resolutely to keep themselves in with a chance.

They might have been level when Evans slid Tameka Yallop in behind the visitors’ defence, but she stabbed her attempt wide as Roebuck closed her down and their hopes were ended by Hemp when she turned smartly before thumping a shot past Arnold.

Katerina Svitkova forced a late save from Roebuck, but Arnold had to tip substitute Filippa Angeldahl’s fierce drive on to the crossbar and was beaten for a fourth time at the death as Hemp completed a good afternoon.

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