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Chelsea Women vs Manchester City at Wembley Stadium

Wembley Stadium Referee : Rebecca Welch
29th August 2020 12:30 PM (BST)
  • 2 Chelsea Women

    • ‘66' Millie Bright
    • ‘90'+1' Erin Cuthbert
  • 0 Manchester City


Commentary By Caroline Oatway


Bye for now

That's all from Wembley. 

Stay tuned to for all the latest ahead of the new WSL season, which gets under way next weekend. 

See you soon! 



Disappointing day today but it shouldn't temper our excitement and optimism going into the new WSL season. 

We've added some exciting players to the squad and it's sure to be an interesting battle for the title.

Plenty to look forward to. 


Chelsea lift the Community Shield

The entire City squad are stood together watching Chelsea get their medals and lift the trophy. 

Good to see. Chelsea deserved winners. 



One positive from today, of course, is the collective fitness levels will have improved. 

This is a large pitch, plenty of turf to cover, and that was a tough 90-minute workout. 

Hopefully it sharpens us up ahead of next weekend's game at Villa. 



Referee Rebecca Welch blows the whistle and Chelsea win the FA Women's Community Shield.

Congratulations to Emma Hayes and her side - fully deserved. They've completely dominated in the second half.

In truth, the result flatters us somewhat. A disappointing start to the season but a useful learning curve for Gareth Taylor and his side I'm sure.


Goal for Chelsea ๐Ÿ˜ฃ

Erin Cuthbert smashes home from close range and that's that, I'm afraid.

Steph Houghton had done well to deny Bethany England at the near post but unfortunately, the ball fell straight to Cuthbert and she made no mistakes.


Wayward โžก

The ball falls to Ji So-yun on the edge of the area but she skews well over the bar.

We need to get hold of this ball. It's wave after wave of Chelsea pressure at the moment.

Gemma Bonner does well again to thwart Ji, throwing herself in front of an absolute bullet. Must have hurt!


Concerning ๐Ÿ˜ฃ

The skipper is down receiving treatment.

She's a tough cookie, as we know. It takes a lot to floor her.

Looked for a moment like she was coming off but she's back on, thankfully.


A time for leaders ๐Ÿ’ซ

Fifteen minutes to go and we need to find something from deep within.

This has been a very poor second half performance by our standards - we haven't troubled Ann Katrin-Berger any where near enough.

It's going to take something special. There is time... but at the moment, I'm not sure where it's going to come from unless someone can conjure a moment of magic.


Sixes and sevens ๐Ÿ˜ซ

Chelsea are so on top - we're all over the place.

Ji So-yun should have made it two there but fired straight at Ellie Roebuck.

Need to gain some kind of control and build from there.


Eeek! ๐Ÿ˜ฌ

Melanie Leupolz has the chance to double the lead but thankfully, blazes well over the bar.

That probably would have been game over!


City change ๐Ÿ”„

A nightmare of a second half for City.

Gareth Taylor decides it's time for Sam Mewis, and the United States star replaces Caroline Weir.


Goal for Chelsea ๐Ÿ˜ฃ

A real suckerpunch.

A horrendous few minutes for City, as defender Millie Bright tries her luck from distance and absolutely rockets the ball past Ellie Roebuck.

You don't expect that from a centre-back! Vincent Kompany-esque!


Well... ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

A bizarre turn of events.

As the game halted with Ji So-yun receiving treatment, the players gathered for water breaks and teamtalks.

In the midst of it, completely unnoticed, referee Rebecca Welch brandished a second yellow for Jill Scott and she walked off.

Even the City players didn't seem to notice!


Phew! ๐Ÿ˜จ

At the other end, Sam Kerr races clear again with Ellie Roebuck out of position but thankfully, once again, she puts the effort wide!

We could be 4-0 down!


Agonising! ๐Ÿ˜ซ

Best move of the second half for City by some distance, as Jill Scott plays Georgia Stanway through.

Chasing at speed, the forward was a little off-balance as she struck the ball and it slid narrowly wide!


Disappointing ๐Ÿ˜ž

A good chance to get the ball in the box and put Chelsea under some pressure but Chloe Kelly's free-kick is straight at Ann-Katrin Berger.

Need some inspiration from somewhere...



City yet to threaten in this second half, while Chelsea have looked dangerous at every opportunity.

We're struggling to create anything with every attempted pass too long or misplaced. End product is lacking.

Imagine we'll be seeing more changes in the next 10-15 minutes. Sam Mewis perhaps?


Need to sharpen it up โš”

Sloppy play in the middle sees City surrender the ball several times.

Sam Kerr is played in once more but can't get the ball out of her feet and clips straight into Ellie Roebuck's hands.


What a let-off! ๐Ÿ˜ฌ

Sam Kerr with another glorious chance for Chelsea, as Fran Kirby slides the ball to the backpost but again, somehow she puts it wide!

Should have at least one goal in this game with the chances she's had. (Of course, I'm pleased she hasn't).

Can't keep giving her these kind of chances though!


Let's do this ๐Ÿ’ช

Ready and raring to go, City race out of the dressing room first, soundtracked to Fatboy Slim's Right Here, Right Now, which always sparks memories of Maine Road for me. Shivers down the spine!

Football (especially women's football) has come a long way since those days!



A lot of love for debutant Chloe Kelly on Twitter - and deservedly so.

The youngster, making her first competitive City appearance on the big stage - has looked very exciting, especially when she switched to the left-hand side.

That superb solo run to set up Janine Beckie for the offside opener was brilliant - the best moment of the game so far - and she was so unfortunate not to break the deadlock when she hit the post, having done well to keep her shot controlled.

Of course, all the talk has been about City's recruitment of World Cup winners Sam Mewis and Rose Lavelle (and rightly so) but I have a feeling Kelly could be equally key.


Analysis ๐Ÿค”

A fairly even contest with chances at both ends.

Took some time for both sides to get into the game - expected given the length of match absence and the fact it's the first game of the season.

Chloe Kelly went closest for City, striking the post, while Janine Beckie had slotted the ball into the back of the net - only to be ruled offside. Meanwhile, Sam Kerr has spurned two chances for Chelsea.

Both sides at their most threatening on the wings but so far, both defences have stood firm with Ann-Katrin Berger the busier of the two 'keepers.

A typically tight encounter, marred only by injury to Lauren Hemp.

An intriguing second half awaits...


Woah! ๐Ÿ˜ฏ

Chelsea really pressing down the right-hand side through Fran Kirby and Maren Mjelde, who whips in a teasing cross to the backpost.

It's past Ellie Roebuck but a well-timed foot clips the ball away in the nick of time!


Phew! ๐Ÿ˜จ

Gemma Bonner with a great block to deny Maren Mjelde.

That volley looked destined for the bottom corner but Bonner stuck out a leg to clear!

Ellie Roebuck also did well in the build-up to that effort to thwart a near-post cross.

Dangerous moments...


Ping-pong ๐Ÿ“

It's Chelsea's turn to attack again through Fran Kirby and Steph Houghton is aware of the danger to hack the ball clear.

Can't take your eyes off this one!


Off the post! ๐Ÿ˜ฉ

Chloe Kelly strikes the foot of the woodwork, after Ann-Katrin Berger had parried away Georgia Stanway's powerful effort.

So unlucky!


Free-kick ๐Ÿ˜ฌ

Chelsea have a good chance in a very dangerous area, as Ji So-yun is upended by Jill Scott on the edge of the City box...

Scott is booked for the challenge.


Offside ๐Ÿณ


City have the ball in the net but it's immediately chalked off, as the flag goes up.

A sensational mazy run by Chloe Kelly (now playing on the left) to unlock the Chelsea defence and she slides in for Janine Beckie to convert.

But the newly-introduced Canada star had strayed into an offside position!



Concern, as Lauren Hemp goes down.

She seems to have pulled something, as he looked to embark on a trademark pacey run.

She's receiving treatment now.


Pressure ๐Ÿ‘

City getting on top a little now, pleasingly.

Chloe Kelly whips in a high cross to the far post where Steph Houghton is lurking but she can't divert the ball back across goal.

Much-improved in recent minutes.


There it is! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Georgia Stanway lets fly for the first time this afternoon, stinging the palms of Ann-Katrin Berger with a well-struck half-volley.

(Who had 21 minutes in the sweepstake?!)


Unlucky ๐Ÿ˜–

Wonderful first-time through-ball there from Jill Scott there into the path of Chloe Kelly.

She reaches it but the cross was poor for her standards - straight into Ann-Katrin Berger's hands.


Better! ๐Ÿ‘

City looking much more secure in possession in recent minutes, being patient with the build-up rather than forcing a pass.

Georgia Stanway chasing down every through-ball but she's been thwarted so far.

Can't see it being too long until her first shot of the afternoon! (We usually have a sweepstake on the timing of the first effort... just kidding!)


Fast-paced โšก

End-to-end this one, at the moment, but neither side yet to test the opposition goalkeeper.

City looking to get Chloe Kelly involved. She's been a real bright spark in pre-season with excellent pace, trickery and composure - much to the delight of her new teammates.

Definitely has a huge future ahead of her.


Keep calm ๐Ÿคฒ

That early Kerr chance seems to have rattled City a little - we've been a little sloppy since.

We're trying to stay composed at the back, playing it around, but the Londoners are pressing well, harrying us into mistakes.

Need to build a period of possession and gain some control.


Empty bowl ๐ŸŸ

So strange to be able to hear the shouts of the players and staff so clearly.

Of course, in normal circumstances, they'd be completely drown out by a vocal and roaring crowd.

Aside from the calls of those on the pitch and the typing of keyboards, there is just a low hum around the ground.

I can't get used to it.


A warning โš 

A real let-off for City, as Chelsea win back possession in the middle and Sam Kerr is released.

She opts to try and poke the ball past Ellie Roebuck but thankfully, can only find the side-netting.

An early warning. She should have done better.


Early attack ๐Ÿ‘

Immediately, City win a corner to put Chelsea under instant pressure but Chloe Kelly's delivery is comfortably plucked by Ann-Katrin Berger.



After the players take the knee in support of the #BlackLivesMatter movement, Georgia Stanway kicks things off and the 2020/21 season is under way!



Tradition ๐Ÿ™Œ

Those in attendance stand for the national anthem.

The City players are standing very close together with their arms around each other in a show of unity.

With around 50 games to potentially play this season, that team ethic (and squad depth) is going to be key.

The teams disperse to their halves and City go straight into a huddle.


Megan Campbell's best City performance came at Wembley, as she claimed two assists in the 2017 FA Women's Cup Final. Would be wonderful to see her get some minutes today, after her injury woes ๐Ÿคž


Warm-ups under way ๐Ÿ’ช

Interesting set-ups for both sides in the warm-up.

City are separated into two sections - shooting practice and possession-based football - while Chelsea are split into smaller groups.

Over the past few weeks, I've been fortunate to have been in attendance at our pre-season games and you can really see Gareth Taylor's style and ethos coming through.

There's a real focus on possession-based football - direct in attack and composed at the back. The threat of the wingers has been key, while our central midfielders have been looking to mix up their play with through-balls, cross-field passes and crosses.

The players really seem to be enjoying it and it's very encouraging to see. There have been goals all over the pitch too - not just from the strikers - which again, is a good omen.


Ellen White ๐Ÿ’ฌ

โ€œItโ€™s an exciting game for us. Itโ€™s one of our biggest rivalries and a big one to prepare for.

โ€œIโ€™m sure there is a little something extra. You canโ€™t shy away from that fact.

โ€œIt wouldnโ€™t be โ€˜revengeโ€™ for the way the season ended โ€“ and weโ€™re not going to be hung up on that โ€“ but it is a big game.

โ€œItโ€™s a chance to potentially win silverware right at the start of the season, build some momentum and see where we are at the moment.

โ€œWeโ€™re all really excited.โ€


Familiar foe ๐Ÿคœ๐Ÿค›

City and Chelsea have been frequent competitors over the years.

Since January 2018 alone, the pair have met on ten occasions and are more often than not pitted against each other in cup competition.

It is fitting that this fixture bookends the cancellation of the 2019/20 campaign. Our last league game saw the two contest a scintillating 3-3 draw in one of the most entertaining games in FA WSL history.

(Not that I'd particularly enjoy a six-goal thriller today. Let me ease back into this reporting lark, eh?!)

Following the conclusion of the campaign, Chelsea were awarded the title on a points per game basis and as Ellen White says, there is a little bit of extra sting in City's tail today...


Chloe Kelly (on making her debut at Wembley) ๐Ÿ’ฌ

โ€œIโ€™m very excited about the game. Itโ€™s been a tough pre-season but weโ€™ve prepared well, weโ€™re ready and weโ€™re all raring to go now.

โ€œWeโ€™ve played some great football in pre-season, scoring goals and really putting in the work weโ€™ve been practicing on the training pitch.

โ€œWembley is local for me as it's where I grew up.

โ€œIt will be a great occasion.. It will be a big day for everyone and hopefully, we can get the result that we need.

โ€œPlaying Chelsea will help set the tone for the season and then we'll get going from there.

โ€œI think it will be a tough season ahead but what a way to start it against Chelsea."


What a day for Esme Morgan! ๐Ÿ’™

The defender - a lifelong Blue - joined City at Under-15s level, after trialing for the Club.

She soon progressed to the U16s Regional Talent Squad and then the Development Squad, before she was selected by Nick Cushing to accompany the first-team on the pre-season tours of Frankfurt and Toulouse.

Within the space of seven days, the teenager made her first-team debut for her beloved football club and received outstanding GCSE results - eight A*s, one A and one B.

Her first appearance โ€“ a composed display in Frankfurt โ€“ impressed the manager enough for him to immediately add her to the midweek trip to France for the Toulouse International Ladies Cup, where they would face Montpellier and Champions League winners Lyon.

After penning her first professional contract with the Club in June 2019, she spent the 2019/20 campaign on loan with Everton.

Today, she steps out onto the hallowed Wembley turf, sporting her beloved sky blue. Amazing!


Team news and tactics โฌ‡

So, there we have it!

No start for Sam Mewis but a very strong City outfit nonetheless!

Ellie Roebuck is the chosen shot-stopper, shielded by a backline of Demi Stokes, Gemma Bonner, captain Steph Houghton and teenage City fan Esme Morgan.

Keira Walsh protects the backline in defensive midfield, employed behind Caroline Weir and Jill Scott.

Georgia Stanway leads the line upfront, flanked by wingers Lauren Hemp and Chloe Kelly.

Our new US recruit starts on the bench and there's also a welcome return for Megan Campbell, who is named amongst the substitutes for the first time since her injury. Great news!


Caroline Weir (on the signings of Mewis and Rose Lavelle) ๐Ÿ’ฌ

โ€œTo have players of that calibre come in is great. For them to have won a World Cup, it will drive us on to the next level.

โ€œTo have players of their calibre with us with their mindset and winning mentality on the pitch is only a good thing for us all.

โ€œI think Rose and Sam are what the squad needs. We were a bit thin on the ground at times last year.

โ€œGareth said there was going to be competition for places and I'm looking forward it. These players come with huge experience and are some of the top players in the world. It's exciting - I'm looking forward to it.

โ€œSam has been with us for the past few training sessions and sheโ€™s been great. You can see her qualities straight away - sheโ€™s physical, technical and it is great to be playing alongside players like that.

โ€œShe has got a winning mentality, and weโ€™re looking forward to linking up with Rose too.

โ€œChloe Kelly has been here since the beginning of pre-season. Itโ€™s been great to have her join and itโ€™ll be great to get to know them even more when the season begins.โ€


Immediate impact ๐Ÿ’ฅ

United States star Mewis seemed to settle straight into life in City blue, producing an excitingly good performance in a second half cameo in out final pre-season encounter against Everton.

In addition to netting her first goal for the Club, she also provided a wonderful assist for Lauren Hemp's header *and* won a free-kick, which Steph Houghton duly despatched.

After the game, she said she felt she didn't have her best game! Look forward to seeing what that would be!


Gareth Taylor ๐Ÿ’ฌ

โ€œItโ€™s going to be a great game. Weโ€™re really confident โ€“ weโ€™re going there to really put on good performance and hopefully, come back with an early trophy in the season.

โ€œWeโ€™re looking for that first piece of silverware. I understand completely the expectations. The girls are winners. I sensed the hunger from the moment I arrived.

โ€œWe want to build on the success weโ€™ve already had. We understand that to do that, there has to be slight changes โ€“ not massive ones. Belief is a big one of those.

โ€œIโ€™m pushing the girls a lot, pushing the staff a lotโ€ฆ Belief is a big thing to being successful.

โ€œThis week, itโ€™s more work, back out onto the training pitches. Weโ€™re looking forward to it.โ€


"Strange times we're in" ๐Ÿ˜•

Although it's an honour to be present here today, I can't help feel a sadness that the fans can't be here to share the experience with us.

Trips to Wembley may have been delightfully frequent over the past decade (especially delightful for those long-suffering City fans amongst us who never thought we'd have the chance to go!) but they're always special occasions.

It's a very strange atmosphere inside the ground - there is an excitement but it's subdued. Normally, by now, the ground would be filling up; the noise and anticipation gradually rising.

I'm perched in the press box with no-one else within 50 yards of me. Usually, there'd be some press box banter or pre-match discussion and yet, it's scarily quiet.

I have to say, the safety measures put in place have been excellent. We've had to go through thorough checks and everything is well-spaced out...

But from a fan perspective, I can't imagine what it will be like if a goal is scored, or if the game is won via a penalty shoot-out - with only the cheers of the players and staff to hear.

It's going to be a weird one but as always, I'll do my very best to bring you as close to the action as I can. We're Not Really Here ๐Ÿ’™


Wembley, Wembley! ๐ŸŽถ

A very good morning from Wembley Stadium!

It's a pleasure and a privilege to be one of the lucky few inside our great national stadium today, as City lock horns with Chelsea in the first FA Women's Community Shield for 12 years.

Today marks a fantastic day for women's football and of course, the start of the eagerly-awaited 2020/21 campaign!

Following a very positive pre-season campaign, Gareth Taylor takes charge of his first competitive fixture, hoping to guide City to our first trophy of the season... and there are six available!

Clashes against Chelsea are always tightly-contested, feisty affairs - often won by the odd goal - and as the season opener, I'd expect similar this afternoon... but let's see how it all unfolds...


Steph Houghton ๐Ÿ’ฌ

โ€œTalk about easing us in gently!

โ€œTo be able to play Chelsea on Saturday at Wembley is fantastic.

โ€œIt will be unbelievable to play at the stadium, although still strange without fans.

โ€œItโ€™s important to play these type of teams going into season, which is going to be even more exciting and competitive.

โ€œFor us, we were disappointed with the way the season ended, losing the league and being knocked out of the Continental Cup.

โ€œThere was still a long way to go in the league and I was confident we could finish the job we started but it wasnโ€™t meant to be.

โ€œThis Club needs to be winning trophies. There are six available this year (with the two FA Cups and Community Shield) and weโ€™ll be trying our best to get our hands on all of them!โ€


It's matchday! โšฝ

A very good morning, City fans!

We're up bright and early today for today's eagerly-awaited FA Women's Community Shield clash with Chelsea at Wembley Stadium.

It's the first time the competition has taken place in the women's game since 2008 so it's another huge step forward!

As the FA Women's Cup holders, City face League Champions Chelsea in a 12:30pm kick-off (as the first part of a double header with the men's edition).

I'm delighted to be reporting to you live from Wembley and as always, we'll have all of the live build-up, match coverage and post-match reaction right here on the Matchday Centre,

How are you feeling ahead of the game? Who do you think will start? Will United States star and World Cup winner Sam Mewis make her competitive debut? Share your thoughts on Twitter using #cmoncity.