Chelsea defeat Arsenal with stoppage-time winner to secure Continental Cup for the first time

Bethany England of Chelsea celebrates after scoring her team's second goal during the FA Women's Continental League Cup Final Chelsea FC Women and Arsenal FC Women at City Ground on February 29, 2020 in Nottingham, England
Beth England scored the injury time winner, her second of the match Credit: Getty Images
  • Chelsea 2 Arsenal 1

On the morning of Chelsea’s first Continental Cup final, Emma Hayes’s sister texted her with the Brian Clough quote: "I wouldn’t say I was the best manager in the business, but I’m in the top one"2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围app. “Well, I’m there today,” said Hayes. “I’ll take that.”

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appHayes is such a fan of Clough that she spent the morning having her photo taken with the many pictures of Clough and Peter Taylor plastered on every surface of the City Ground, and when she saw the dates of Forests’ European Cup triumphs pasted across the roof it reminded her of the only trophy she is yet to win as manager. By Hayes’s own admission, Chelsea were comfortably the second-best team here - “the better team did not win the game, [but] the most resilient team,” she said - and were it not for the heroics of their goalkeeper, Ann-Katrin Berger, the trophy would be travelling to a different part of London. 

Arsenal, for their part, had been warned to stop the Bethany England-Sam Kerr partnership. On 92 minutes, they saw why. Kerr’s natural athleticism had torn a hole in the Arsenal back line and England skidded in at the back post, via Erin Cuthbert, to hand Chelsea their first-ever Continental Cup. 

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appSix minutes earlier, the Arsenal head coach, Joe Montemurro, surged from his technical area and let out the kind of roar that can only signify the catharsis of watching his side draw level with four minutes to go, as Leah Williamson diverted the ball pinballing inside the area into the bottom corner from close range.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appBefore then, Berger had comfortably earned her corn for, if nothing else, her drop at full stretch to prod away the Vivianne Miedema header, deep into the second half, that dropped menacingly to roll along the line. Perhaps no-one will ever know how she sprang into position to keep Miedema out at the near post with just eight minutes to go - a save with her stomach that necessitated treatment. 

Ann-Katrin Berger put in a stunning performance limiting Arsenal to just one goal depsite a high number of chances Credit: Reuters

A2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apprsenal are knee-deep in injuries - without Beth Mead, Swiss midfielder Lia Walti and Scotland’s Kim Little - but despite their endeavour and control, there was an angst in front of goal that was so atypical of a player of Miedema’s class. Miedema lacked her usually instinctive menace: she worked hard on the ball but that moment of magic was not forthcoming. It is not like her to snatch wide with the frequency she did here.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围app“A lot of coaches say: we should have, could have, would have,” said Montemurro. “But in the end, you have to do it. We didn’t do it. We created chances, we created opportunities. In the end, they scored the ones they created and we didn’t. This team will keep fighting - we showed that today. It could have been a different story. Look at the mental attitude to come back, to dominate, to actually really have the ball and completely dominate a team that did what they did to us at Borehamwood.” 

Jonna Andersson and Millie Bright lift the trophy at the City Ground  Credit: Getty Images

T2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apphat was the last time these sides met, when Chelsea dismantled these opponents so ruthlessly that they had been three goals to the good within 20 minutes. It felt that Arsenal’s chances of getting anything here rested not only on whether they could banish any lingering ghosts from the day Jordan Nobbs spent the best part of an hour chasing Sophie Ingle’s shadow and England and Kerr had tied the Gunners defence in knotts, but, more crucially, whether they had learned. 

That it took Kerr just 51 seconds to record Chelsea’s first shot on target - shooting low at Manuela Zinsberger - suggested otherwise. For the seven minutes before Chelsea found their breakthrough they were firmly in control. 

Then England was on the scene, opening her account three minutes earlier than she did in that 4-1 win just over a month ago. It was not the tidiest goal she will ever score, scuffing the initial finish before turning to prod home her second chance, but Arsenal will be aggrieved that they did not deal with either Jonna Andersson’s initial lifted cross from wide, or Maren Mjelde, left free at the back post to nod Andersson's ball into England’s vicinity. 

It was testament to what the game could have become at that point that Chelsea Women’s official Twitter account marked the goal with the words, “We’re up and running”. The next 10 minutes were a thrilling back-and-forth before settling into a concerted spell of Arsenal pressure as Berger denied Louise Quinn, Nobbs and Miedema. Miedema and Caitlin Foord’s industry out wide, with Danielle van de Donk linking in the middle, caused a below-par Chelsea no end of issues. 

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围app“It isn’t always about being the best team, possessing the ball the most,” Hayes concluded. “No-one in our camp thought this would be a dominant Chelsea performance. Far from it. To win the game knowing that - that they dominated, outpossessed us, outfootballed us - for me, shows what a great team we really are.”

Match details

Chelsea (4-1-3-2): Berger; Mjelde, Bright, Eriksson, Andersson; Ingle; Cuthbert, Ji So-yun (Thorisdottir 76), Reiten; Kerr (Spence 92), England  
Subs not used: Telford (g), Blundell, Carter, Cooper, Bachmann 
Bookings: Eriksson

Arsenal (4-3-3): Zinsberger; Evans, Schnaderbeck, Quinn, McCabe; Nobbs, Williamson, Roord; Foord, van de Donk, Miedema 
Subs not used: Peyraud-Magnin (g), Maier, Grant, Filis, Mace
Referee:2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围app Helen Conley

Attendance: 6,743

And here is the moment they lifted the trophy!

More celebration action!

Emma Hayes and the bench certainly enjoyed the winner!

Emma Hayes and the bench enjoyed the winner Credit: Getty Images

Eriksson lifts the trophy!

Goalkeeper Berger is fittingly in the middle of it all after her match-winning performance, somehow limiting Arsenal to one goal!

Chelsea are now going up to get their winners medals

Massive moment for the club in front of a record crowd.

Here is the winner, what a moment!

Arsenal had chances

S2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appo many chances. But they just did not have the quality in the final third that Chelsea did.

The Chelsea fans and staff are on the pitch celebrating in style

T2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apphe loyal Chelsea fans have also stayed to celebrate with their side! 

What an end to the match!

A2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apprsenal scored and the more likely side to go on and win the match but Beth England had other ideas!

FULL TIME CHELSEA 2 ARSENAL 1

C2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apphelsea have done it! They have won the Continental Cup for the very first time!

90+5 min: Chelsea 2 Arsenal 1

C2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apphelsea have a goal kick and are understandably taking their time. This could be it.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appArsenal try to play it long but it is intercepted and England takes it into the corner. Surely that will be time?

90+4 min: Chelsea 2 Arsenal 1

Kerr is now off after that vital chance creation. Arsenal attack down the right but the cross in is well dealt with. Will they have one last chance?

GOOOOOOAAAAAAL! ENGLAND Chelsea 2 Arsenal 1

Chelsea attack down the right and Kerr beats her defender findings Mjelde who crosses to the back post and England is there to tap it in! Surely that will win them the cup!

90 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 1

Evans attempts to put in a cross but Andersson gets in the way, deflecting it out for another Arsenal corner.

Can Arsenal complete the comeback? The corner falls to Miedema but her shot goes straight to Berger. There will be five minutes of added time!

88 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 1

N2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appobbs attacks down the right, but her cross in is claimed by Berger who releases England. Her cross is lacking in quality and goes straight to the keeper. End to end stuff!

85 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 1

A2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apprsenal are now pressing for the win! They win another corner and Chelsea hack it away. The momentum has completely changed now!

GOOOOOOOAAAAL! Williamson Chelsea 1 Arsenal 1

The corner falls to ground and Williamson hits it in! Arsenal finally score!

83 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Arsenal really need to go for it now. Chelsea are in defensive mode, sitting deep.

A cross comes in from the right and Miedema should score. On the half-volley she nails it towards goal from just yards out but Berger gets across to put it out for a corner. What a performance from the keeper! She has stayed down again. Berger saved that with her midrift!

New attendance record for this match confirmed!

80 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

A2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appnother collision now! Quinn stays down after accidentally being stood on. No foul given.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appChelsea have now boxed Arsenal in their half. Arsenal finally break out through Nobbs but Arsenal fail to take their chances again. Foord has a chance to volley at goal but instead tried to square it. Chance is gone!

76 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Ji is now coming off as Chelsea look to protect their lead. On comes Thorisdottir. 

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appCuthbert puts in a nasty challenge on McCabe in the centre circle. Late and high! She is deservedly yellow carded for it.

73 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Berger has stayed down after those important interventions, she is now recieving treatment. 

The keeper is now back on her feet and at the other end Chelsea win a corner. Arsenal head it away and Bright hammers a shot towards goal but it goes wide.

71 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Arsenal have another chance! Foord heads a cross towards goal but Berger tips it out for a corner. She then claims the corner! Superb keeping.

68 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Nobbs attempts a cross from deep but Berger comes out to claim it. Arsenal are now starting to snatch at chances as the final 20 minutes approach. There is still plenty of time left!

Nobbs picks up the ball in the box, turns and slams it wide of the post. Another chance missed.

66 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Arsenal attack once more but Foord's cross cannot find Miedema in the middle. Chelsea counter and Kerr gets a one-on-one. She tries to slip it under the keeper but Zinsberger gets down to it. That could have been the match!

64 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

M2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appiedema has another chance! This time she tries to cut back onto her right foot but it gives time for Ji to get back and take the ball. 

Arsenal will be furious that they have not scored yet.

62 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

The corner is eventually cleared away. Chelsea are struggling to break free here.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appNobbs breaks down the left and finds Miedema but her shot is tamely blocked away. The ball comes back to the striker but she pulls her shot just wide. More chances going begging for Arsenal!

59 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Van de Donk is fouled on the edge of the area by the Chelsea captain Eriksson who is yellow carded. Huge chance.

Who will take the free kick? McCabe lays it off to Miedema but her shot is blocked out for a corner by Ji.

57 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

England is played in down the left hand side of the box but she just chips it to the keeper rather than pulling it back. 

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appEngland has another chance to attack down the left but once again it comes to nothing.

55 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

T2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apphe game is end to end at the moment, both sides creating opportunities but the final pass letting them down.

Chelsea have bounced back after being dominated early on in this half. Ji is getting more involved after a quiet first half showing.

53 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

C2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apphelsea have their first chance to counter. Ingle lays the ball off to Reiten who hits her shot just over the bar. Better from Chelsea.

51 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Arsenal attack again and Foord knocks over Andersson, free kick to Chelsea.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appThe half-time team talk seems to have done the trick for Arsenal, they have come out with real purpose and intensity after the break.

49 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

N2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appobbs lays off the ball to Miedema but instead of shooting she attempts a lay-off and the chance is gone. The shot should have been taken on there!

Arsenal have started brightly and come again but a through ball is claimed by Berger who is quickly off her line.

47 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Chelsea win a free kick and have a chance to score straight away. A cross is chipped in but the header goes straight at the keeper. Arsenal were dozing a little there.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appArsenal then attack through Foord who puts in an excellent cross but Van de Donk cannot get on the end of it.

The second-half is underway!

Here we go! Chelsea will get us restarted.

Can Arsenal take their chances?

I2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appt would be a great time for new signing Foord to score...

Arsenal manger Joe Montemurro's face says it all from the trailing side's perspective

Joe Montemurro, Manager of Arsenal  Credit: Getty Images

Both sides have had good chances

However, Chelsea have been more clinical and look more dangerous in the final third. Arsenal on the other hand have been snatching at chances a little bit.

HALF TIME! Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

N2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appobbs is lurking in the box but she cannot latch on to an early cross. Arsenal are looking a little frustrated at the lack of clinical finishing.

And that's the half. 

44 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Kerr goes through towards goal and passes to Mjelde who takes too long and her shot is blocked. A little to ponderous in the final third there.

Arsenal try to break but there counter is soon broken up.

43 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Bright plays a long ball to England who controls it before finding Ji. England has the ball returned to her and she wins a corner.

The ball comes out to Ingle who fires her shot wide - nicely struck, but never in danger of hitting the target.

40 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

R2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appeiten plays a perfectly weighted through ball to Kerr who gets a shot away but it is well saved. The ball comes out to Ji who hammers it into the back of Kerr! Not ideal.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appArsenal counter and Miedema plays in Foord who slams her shot into the side netting. Clear chances at both ends but no goal.

38 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Ji is fouled in the centre-circle after playing a nice one-two. Chelsea are on the attack and break into the box, Cuthbert goes down and there are some very minor appeals for a penalty.

Arsenal use the opportunity to counter but Chelsea regain the ball.

36 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

O2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appnce more Arsenal attack. This is much better from the trailing side.

Chelsea have finally regained possession and have just slowed the tempo a tad, trying to re-establish control of the match.

33 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Evans puts in a dangerous cross which is put out for a corner. Chelsea clear but Van de Donk puts another ball back in. Chelsea once again clear. Some sustained pressure being built by Arsenal.

Nobbs puts in a dangerous ball but Berger comes out and punches it away - good keeping!

31 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

E2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appngland has a huge chance to score her second! Reiten puts in a perfect cross but England puts the header wide from close range. A player of her quality would normally score that! Let-off for Arsenal.

28 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Miedema and Foord link up nicely, which results in a corner for the trailing side.

The corner is cleared away but Arsenal come again. McCabe whips in a cross from deep but Quinn's header goes well wide of the post.

26 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0 

Van de Donk is fed the ball by Miedema but she cannot get a shot away. Arsenal attack again and Roord pulls a shot from the edge of the box just to the left of the post. Chance missed, some space opened up nicely there for the midfielder.

24 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0 

Ji picks up the ball finding Kerr who plays it onto England. Mjelde is then played down the right but her cross goes straight into the arms of the keeper.

Here is the opening goal of the match!

22 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0 

The corner is overcooked and comes to nothing. After a frantic start to the match the tempo has slowed down a touch.

19 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

McCabe tries to play in Van de Donk but Bright reads it well and clears.

Foord is becoming more prominent, dropping deep to pick up the ball. The ball is then played down the left and Miedema tries an audacious dink which Berger can only tip it over the bar for a corner.

17 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

J2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appi plays in Kerr who crosses to Andersson. She cannot keep her volley down. Chelsea come again but Arsenal just about cling on.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appBoth sides look like scoring at the moment!

14 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

More pressure from Arsenal who win a corner. It is sent in low but Chelsea eventually hack it away.

Arsenal come again, Nobbs is played through on goal and Berger makes another superb save! 

12 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

Arsenal put in a cross and this time Chelsea do not deal with. Williamson wins the ball and she is brought down - no penalty is given! Big call.

Another cross comes in and Quinn heads it towards goal and only a fantastic save keeps it out! Good response from Arsenal so far.

10 min: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

W2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apphat a start from Chelsea! That was clinical from the England striker.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appArsenal look a little rattled, can they recover?

GOAAAAAAAAAL! ENGLAND Chelsea 1 Arsenal 0

A cross comes into the back post and Arsenal cannot deal with it. England reacts quickest, swivelling onto her left foot and hammering the ball home from close range.

7 min: Chelsea 0 Arsenal 0

Chelsea have now taken control of possession. Bright looks for a long ball over the top but she over hits it and it rolls through to Zinsberger.

Nobbs has been prominent in the early stages. The ball then runs to Chelsea in an attacking position.

4 min: Chelsea 0 Arsenal 0

Arsenal then have their first chance to attack. Foord breaks into the box and wins her side a corner. The ball is whipped in but Ji clears it long.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appBoth sides are losing possession rather quickly early on, big match nerves?

2 min: Chelsea 0 Arsenal 0

A2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apprsenal lose possession immediately, allowing Chelsea to counter. Kerr is released down the left hand side who then fires a speculative shot from the edge of the box which goes straight at the keeper. Good start for Chelsea.

Here we go!

Arsenal get us underway in Nottingham. It is chilly, a bit windy but dry.

Who will claim the first silverware of the season?

C2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apphelsea are slight favourites but Arsenal will certainly not see it that way. The pre-match ceremony has nearly finished with just the national anthem to go.

The players are out onto the pitch

The final is just minutes away!

Will Sam Kerr be able to recreate this during the match is the big question?

Arsenal have won this competition five times!

T2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apphere have only been eight years of this competition prior to this season but Arsenal have come out victorious on five occasions. Chelsea have never claimed this trophy, with Manchester City winning it on the other three occasions.

Some extra motivation for the team in blue perhaps?

Here are some of the key battles today!

The City Ground looking glorious before kick-off

The City Ground before the game Credit: Getty Images

The path to the final

C2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围apphelsea overcame Aston Villa and then Manchester United to reach the final, after finishing top in the group stage of this competition.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围appArsenal also topped their pool, before beating Reading and then last year's champions Manchester City.

These two sides are certainly very well matched!

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Team news is in!

A record attendance is expected today at the City Ground, improving on the crowd from 2015

Manchester City took the trophy home last year 

The players have arrived at the ground!

Leah Williamson arrives at the ground Credit: Getty Images
Millie Bright and Carly Telford of Chelsea arrive Credit: Getty Images

Who will get their hands on the trophy?

Two of the WSL's premier teams face off today in the hope of adding some silverware to the trophy cabinet. Chelsea currently sit in second place in the league while Arsenal are just three points behind them in third.

The form guide would suggest that Chelsea are slight favourites, in part due the fact they have won four league games on the bounce. The last time these two teams met in January, Chelsea ran out comprehensve winners putting four past Arsenal with Sam Kerr playing a starring role.

Sam Kerr has made a big impact since joining Chelsea Credit: Getty Images

That being said, Arsenal will be confident they can redeem themselves after an under-par showing last time out against their London rivals. However, Arsenal  will be without Kim Little, Lia Walti, Beth Mead and Katrine Veje through injury making the challenge even tougher.

Arsenal head coache Joe Montemurro told the Arsenal club website: 

“We’ve played them a few times and studied them a lot, so I really do believe that it’s up to us and whether we settle early and play our game.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围app“I really do believe that it’s up to us. We need to get into our rhythm and tempo as quick as we can, and then it’ll take care of itself.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围app“It’s not unknown about Chelsea and the way they play. They are more direct. They are a team that obviously use their power to go forward early and we need to be smarter in the way we set ourselves up when we do lose the ball.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围app“We don’t want to lose sight of what we want to do, and the more we have the ball, the less they’ll have the ball and the more chances we’ll create to go forward and score goals.”

Arsenal have clinched the League Cup five out of a possible eight times, as pointed out by Chelsea head coach Emma Hayes to the Chelsea club website.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围app"They have had the trophy the most amount of times. For them they have got history of winning trophies and they’ve got a history of winning that trophy and they will feel that way too.

2020欧洲杯体育足彩外围app"This is two top teams, both have got match-winners in their own right, we’ve just played well enough the last two games to be victors, but Arsenal playing well can do the same too.

"We have to realise there is a team that will come full-throttle and will want to prove themselves after the last two games we’ve played them this season."

A close game should await.