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West Ham United Women vs Manchester City Women. The Women's FA Cup Semi-Final.

Victoria Road.

West Ham United Women 1

  • L Evans (42nd minute)

Manchester City Women 4

  • E White (22nd minute)
  • C Kelly (37th minute)
  • L Hemp (66th minute, 91st minute)

West Ham Women 1-4 Man City Women: Lauren Hemp inspires Gareth Taylor's side as they reach FA Cup final

Match report as Man City beat West Ham 4-1 at Victoria Road to reach the FA Cup final; Ellen White, Chloe Kelly and Lauren Hemp score the goals to secure a trip to Wembley to play Arsenal or Chelsea in the final next month; Lisa Evans struck for West Ham just before half-time

Manchester City's Lauren Hemp (right) scores their side's third goal of the game during the Vitality Women's FA Cup semi final match at the Chigwell Construction Stadium, London. Picture date: Saturday April 16, 2022.
Image: Lauren Hemp scores the first of her two goals at West Ham

Lauren Hemp inspired Manchester City to a 4-1 victory over a battling West Ham at Victoria Road as they earned a place in the Women's FA Cup final for the third time in four seasons.

Both sides were intent on pressing each other high up the field while also building play from the back, approaches that made for an entertaining - if error-prone - game.

While they endured some nervous moments - including the error from Alex Greenwood that led to West Ham's goal - it was a style that gifted opportunities to Hemp, as well as Ellen White and the returning Chloe Kelly, as they cruised into next month's final at Wembley.

Team news

  • West Ham made one change, replacing Hawa Cissoko with Katerina Svitkova
  • Man City made three changes, bringing in Laura Coombs, Chloe Kelly and Ellen White for Georgia Stanway, Hayley Raso and Khadija Shaw

Both sides had openings early on, with White just failing to meet a Kelly cross while Dagny Brynjarsdottir had a shot smothered by Ellie Roebuck, but it was White who opened the scoring midway through the first half.

Keira Walsh's excellent half-volley from the edge of the area crashed down off the crossbar, allowing the England striker to nod in the rebound as West Ham's defenders were caught ball-watching.

The hosts could not get close to White, who had the ball in the net again just minutes later, but the goal was ruled out after Lucy Bronze was deemed to have just allowed the ball to go out of play before crossing for her England team-mate.

But City did not have long to wait for their second and it was a euphoric moment for Kelly, whose goal marked her first start for over a year as she continues her recovery from an ACL injury.

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Manchester City's Chloe Kelly (left) celebrates scoring their side's second goal of the game with team-mate Ellen White
Image: Chloe Kelly (left) celebrates scoring with team-mate Ellen White

It was a gift for Kelly, with West Ham captain Gilly Flaherty passing the ball straight to her, leaving the simple task of controlling and slotting past the exposed Mackenzie Arnold.

But to West Ham's credit, they bounced back from that disappointment when they pounced on an error from Greenwood, who was caught in possession, allowing Adriana Leon to play in the impressive Lisa Evans, who rounded Roebuck and slotted the ball past the covering Bronze and into the empty net.

That goal appeared to unnerve City and the game was in the balance for 20 minutes after half-time, with West Ham even having the chance to equalise when Evans played in Tameka Yallop, who put her shot wide.

But Hemp, perhaps sensing her side were in danger of throwing away their hard work, grabbed control of the game when she took advantage of another loss of possession by West Ham to drive into their area and drill the ball off Arnold's back post and into the net (66).

It was almost exclusively one-way traffic after that, with Keira Walsh coming to the fore with some searching passes from midfield and an outrageous dribble past a number of West Ham players in her own penalty area.

White also had another goal ruled out - this time for offside - while Bronze flashed a shot over the bar and Khadija Shaw mis-controlled when clean through.

Hemp was able to double her tally in stoppage time with another drilled finish past Arnold that secured City's place in the FA Cup final in style.

Player ratings

West Ham: Arnold (6), Parker (5), Flaherty (5), Fisk (6), Longhurst (6), Svitkova (6), Brynjarsdottir (5), Hasegawa (7), Yallop (6), Evans (8), Leon (6).

Subs: Snerle (6), Walker (6)

Manchester City: Roebuck (7), Bronze (7), Kennedy (6), Greenwood (5), Stokes (7), Walsh (8), Coombs (6), Weir (7), Kelly (7), Hemp (9), White (8)

Subs: Stanway (7), Angeldahl (6), Raso (6), Shaw (6)

Player of the match: Lauren Hamp

Taylor: Real belief in City squad

City manager Gareth Taylor says there is "real belief" in his side that they can add to the League Cup final they won earlier this season when they play either Arsenal or Chelsea at Wembley next month.

Speaking to BBC Sport, Taylor said: "I feel really proud of this team. We've had a lack of preparation time off the back of the international break. Compared to our performance previously, I thought some of our play was really good. We had some scary moments at times but we deserve our place in the final.

"We've got so many options. We always know with the way we play that there's going to be someone free. Today, a lot of it was Keira Walsh. She controlled the game with and without the ball really, really well.

"The players have got to earn it. We've got good games coming up. We just stick to our motto, which is 'follow the process'. Whenever we've been successful, we've got the details right. When we don't do that we might suffer slightly, but there's real belief. It's great to look forward to a Wembley final."

Harder bemoans 'little details'

Manchester City's Ellen White scores their side's first goal of the game
Image: White reacts quickest to put City ahead

West Ham boss Olli Harder said his side's defeat felt similar to their 2-0 loss to Man City in the Women's Super League just two weeks ago, as he bemoaned the "little details" that went against his side.

"It was just little details here and there," Harder told BBC Sport. "Some nice goals for them. Similar to last time we played them, we applied ourselves really well, but the little details weren't there.

"No positives or negatives to take from the game. Congrats to City on their win.

"This doesn't define our season, it's been a really positive season for West Ham. We have three league games to go. We have three chances to be awesome. Let's see how high we can finish up the league.

"We saw today some moments of quality. Fantastic ruthless finishing from them and mistakes from us.

"The gap between the top teams is closing. I don't think the scoreline reflected the game."

Player of the match: Lauren Hemp

Hemp stepped up when her team needed inspiration, quelling the West Ham fightback with her first goal before sending City to Wembley in style with her second.

What's next?

West Ham travel to Reading and Man City host Leicester in the WSL on Sunday at 2pm.

How to follow Arsenal vs Chelsea...

Find out who Man City will play in the Women's FA Cup final by following the semi-final between Arsenal and Chelsea in our dedicated live match blog on Sunday, with kick-off at 12.30pm.

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