Search

Arsenal Ladies boss signs off with win over Everton to complete FA Cup double

07:16 03 June 2014

Yukari Kinga celebrates after scoring the second goal for Arsenal Ladies

Yukari Kinga celebrates after scoring the second goal for Arsenal Ladies

EMPICS Sport

Shelley Kerr brought the curtain down on her 16-month reign as head coach by guiding the Gunners to FA Women’s Cup glory at Stadium MK.

Goals from inspirational captain Kelly Smith and Yukari Kinga enabled the holders to record their 13th success in the competition – an ideal response after suffering three straight home defeats in the league.

The margin of victory may have been greater were it not for the heroics of Toffees’ stopper Rachel Brown-Finnis – but Kerr, who guided Arsenal to FA Continental Cup glory and now two FA Women’s Cups, was full of praise for the players she is now leaving behind.

“I thought the girls were fantastic. It was nothing new to me – they’ve trained liked that every day I’ve worked with them,” said Kerr, who announced her resignation last week.

“In most of the games this season, we’ve seen evidence of what we’re capable of producing. Unfortunately so far, up until now, we hadn’t been consistent over 90 minutes.

“We dominated with a fantastic team performance. It was a thoroughly deserved win and I’m really proud of them.”

It was Smith, England’s all-time record goalscorer, who set the Gunners on their way to a men’s and women’s FA Cup double for the first time since 1998.

And Kerr, who succeeded Laura Harvey as head coach in February 2013, was lost for superlatives to describe the ability of a player who now has four FA Cup winners’ medals with Arsenal.

“She’s just incredible,” added the outgoing coach. “She’ll hate me for saying this, but she’s 35 years old! You will never see a player like her in England again, she is so talented.

“Every time she takes a free-kick, I’m almost writing on my note pad ‘it’s a goal’. That’s the quality she has – she is a fantastic leader. Kelly is not the most vocal person, but she leads by example on and off the pitch.”

Arsenal were the better side throughout, and had already seen Rachel Yankey’s 25-yard shot hit a post before Smith struck the opener just shy of the quarter-hour mark.

Danielle Carter, a constant threat down the right, was upended on the edge of the box, allowing Smith to curl the ball left-footed beyond the outstretched Brown-Finnis for her sixth goal in this year’s competition.

Carter was denied a goal of her own making when her left-foot shot grazed the post, while Shinobu Ohno also came close to doubling Arsenal’s lead before the interval.

But there was little that could be done to prevent the craftsmanship involved when the Gunners’ second goal arrived on the hour-mark.

Determined to avenge their 3-2 defeat to the Toffees in the 2010 final, Smith hurdled a couple of desperate challenges before finding the onrushing Kinga, who placed her right-foot shot low inside the right-hand post.

Arsenal are not in action again until later this month, but Kerr is in no doubt that whoever replaces her at the helm will be joining a side moving in the right direction.

She added: “Arsenal are a fantastic club and they gave me an opportunity to work with a fantastic group of players, and I had an opportunity to work with some of the most talented youngsters in the country.

“There is no doubt in my mind they will go on to be successful. Half our team are 21 and under, which is brilliant.

“The future is definitely bright, that’s for sure.”

Latest Islington Sports News

21 minutes ago

Holloway and Haverstock schools will share the Islington Gazette Schools’ Cup after contesting a 1-1 draw in one of the last games to be played at Upton Park.

10:30

Stevie Eskinazi admits it may be hard to top the satisfaction of helping Middlesex to County Championship glory in the rest of his career.

Yesterday, 17:05

While most cricket fans inside Lord’s and beyond were entranced by the exciting spectacle that unfolded on Friday, there were also some voicing outrage.

Yesterday, 16:43

Amy Broadhurst claimed her first gold medal since joining Islington BC as she triumphed at the Celtic Box Cup tournament in her native Ireland.

Yesterday, 16:35

Goals from Sebastian Martinez and Ibrahima Sanchez earned London United a 2-0 victory over Shakespeare in their Hackney & Leyton Premier Division clash.

Mon, 13:03

With the Gunners’ previous league win against Chelsea coming nearly five years earlier, the omens did not look good ahead of Saturday’s London derby.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Middlesex hat-trick hero Toby Roland-Jones says the squad were always confident in their ability to become county champions this year.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Middlesex dethroned Yorkshire in a thrilling finish at Lord’s to win their first County Championship title since 1993.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

As we grow older it becomes more and more important to have means to travel about safely and quickly. Our friendship groups and families grow and the need to have a car that is not only safe but also fast and big enough for all our needs is ever more important. There are many cars on the market for such needs but none deals with them as efficiently or as neatly as a VW Golf Estate. These cars are build strong, long lasting and spacious for a reason. They cater to the needs of many and are some of the most popular cars currently on the market.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now