Sunday 31 March 2002

Fulham Ladies 4 v 1 Charlton Athletic, AXA F.A. Women's Cup Semi-Finals
Sunday 31st March 2002, 3.00pm at Woking FC.

Images: Javier Garcia

Fulham Ladies reached the FA Cup final for the second year running today after a 4 - 1 victory against Charlton Athletic, they will now face Doncaster Belles in the final to be played at Selhurst Park on the 6th May.

As the scoreline suggests it wasn't an easy win for Fulham Ladies, who came up against a dogged, competitive Charlton who had their fair share of chances.

Despite Fulham winning the first corner of the match, it was Charlton who had the first effort on goal, and they also saw a header just go wide. Fulham Ladies were not defending as tightly as normal and Charlton's Carmaine Walker was keeping Terp and Phillip on their toes. A cross came over to Walker who got up to direct an excellent header through to Alex Hunn but Hunn's strike went wide of the post.

Midway during the first half Fulham Ladies started to take control with their excellent passing game. Chapman and Haugenes were working hard in midfield and up front Pettersen and Yankey were starting to penetrate the Charlton defence.

In the 26th minute the breakthrough came through, Yankey sent in a good cross from the left, it came to Rachel McArthur who passed it back into the box and there was Pettersen unmarked, to score from just outside the six yard box. Ten minutes later the score was 2 - 0, Margunn Haugenes whipped in another of her excellent corners and Kristy Moore blasted the ball in from close range.

However Fulham conceded a needless free kick from 25 yards out and were punished for it, Fara Williams' innocuous free kick somehow slipped through Johannessen's fingers. But Fulham Ladies responded magnificently, a good ball through to Haugenes who sent in a cross and Pettersen excellently turned a couple of defenders and scored into the corner of the net.

The second half proved even tougher for Fulham Ladies, Charlton were defending well and had many opportunities themselves to get back into the game. Fulham weren't able to play their normal game due to Charlton giving them little space, and much of the second half was quite scrappy.

In the 61st minute Charlton's Grainne Kierans replaced Carole Osborne.

Yankey who was having a good game hit a thunderous shot, which was spectacular saved by Cope. Then in the 76th minute Deena Rahman replaced Rachel McArthur who was carried off with a nasty injury.

Fulham scored their fourth and final goal of the game in the 78th minute, good play between Haugenes and Moore, who hit a magnificent volley into the corner of the net.

Charlton were still causing problems for Fulham's defence and a slack bit of defending let in Joanne Broadhurst but Johannessen made amends for her earlier mistake and pulled off a great save.

Two further Charlton substitutions, Nina Downham and Susanah Abbott were replaced by Samantha Pittuck and Ann-Marie Heatherson.

There were a couple of chances at both ends toward the end of the match, but Charlton ran out of steam and Fulham Ladies were never in any danger.

A good competitive semi-final and now Fulham can look forward to the final in May.

Marianne Pettersen (26 mins) (45 mins)
Kristy Moore (35 mins) (78 mins)

Charlton Scorer: Fara Williams (43 mins)

Fulham team: Johannessen, Duncan, Unitt, Phillip, Terp, Chapman, Haugenes, McArthur (Rahman), Moore, Yankey, Pettersen.

Subs not used: Jerray-Silver, Smith, Gibbons, Mork.