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  • Writer's pictureBethany Barker

Chelsea vs Crystal Palace: Defensive pressure and Leaving it late

Title holders seal their place in the quarter-finals after a shakey performance against Championship side, Crystal Palace

Sunday 11th February 2024


Chelsea have booked their place in the Women's FA Cup quarter-finals courtesy of British record signing, Mayra Ramirez scoring her first club goal as they beat Crystal Palace 1-0 and secure Emma Hayes' 250th win.

How the teams lineup:

There were ten changes made by Emma Hayes, to the side which played the Continental Cup tie against Sunderland on Wednesday:

Hannah Hampton returned to goal and the defensive back four saw Ashley Lawrence, Jess Carter, Nathalie Bjorn and captain Niamh Charles. The midfield included Erin Cuthbert and Melanie Leupolz with Johanna Rytting Kaneryd, Fran Kirby and Guro Reiten supporting Mayra Ramirez in attack.

As for the visitors, Palace made three changes from their last game, which was a 2-1 win over Championship contenders Southampton, with a 5-4-1 formation which included: Demi Lambourne who retained her spot in goal with Felicity Gibbons, Percival, Kirsten Reilly, captain Aimee Everett, Hayley Nolan, Shanade Hopcroft, Molly-Mae Sharpe, Chloe Arthur, Isabella Sibley, Elise Hughes.

Match report:

In the opening half, Palace frustrated the home side with a disciplined organisation which left the 45 minutes goalless. The Blues' best chance in the first half came from Johanna Rytting Kaneryd who found the side netting. Overall it was a quiet opening as both teams settled into the match, with frequent turnovers in possession battling to gain the opener. Throughout the 45 minutes, the title holders had a few missed opportunities to go ahead, such as Mayra Ramirez hitting the crossbar.

Following the break, substituter Sjoeke Nusken eventually found the net from a rebound coming from Ramirez's shot that hit the crossbar but was ruled offside. With 10 minutes to go, the home side's luck changed as Ramirez flicked past Demi Lambourne with a right-footed shot from very close range to the high centre of the goal in the 81st minute, assisted by Ashley Lawrence; who had the home side's earlier goal- via a deflected effort- disallowed for offside. Palace defended well but ultimately didn't threaten Chelsea enough to stop them advancing to the quarter-finals.

Match statistics:


Crystal Palace


Possession (%)






Shots on target





Next up:

Both sides will be fighting for the top spot in their respective leagues with Chelsea taking on title contenders Manchester City in the WSL- 16th February- and Crystal Palace meeting Blackburn Rovers in the Championship- 18th February- looking to get promotion.

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