FA Women's Cup final as it happened

Live video and text commentary as Arsenal Ladies beat Bristol Academy in the FA Women's Cup final.

26 May 2013 Last updated at 17:18

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As it happened

  1. 1714: 
    Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy

    Right, time for me to sign off. Congratulations to Arsenal Ladies, the 2013 FA Women's Cup winners, and commiserations to Bristol Academy, who are still waiting for their first major trophy. They will get the chance for some revenge when they host the Gunners in the Women's Super League on Thursday, but it was the trophy they really wanted. I hope you enjoyed today's final as much as I did, cheerio for now.

  2. 1712: 
    Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy

    Bristol Academy goalkeeper Siobhan Chamberlain on her side's FA Women's Cup defeat: "We didn't really turn up. We have been playing well in the league but we didn't perform as well as we can. It was disappointing because we had a lot more to give."


    Thomas Dunseith: @ArsenalLadies great match, good win #fawomenscup

    Becki Marshall: Women's football is so underrated but so good. Well done @ArsenalLadies #FaWomensCup

    Peter John: @bristolacademy Fantastic effort. Unlucky. A strong final to the end. #fawomenscup

  4. 1708: 
    Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy

    I think the celebrations are going to continue for a little while yet. All of the Arsenal players are going to get their hands on that pot in the next few minutes.

  5. 1707: 
    Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy - Ellen White (94 mins)

    Now it is Arsenal's turn. Keeper Emma Byrne has a peak at her reflection in the trophy as she walks past. The players are jostling for position on the podium... here comes Steph Houghton to hoist the cup above her head.

  6. 1705: 
    Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy

    Firstly, though, it is Bristol's players who are to receive their losers medals. Lucy Staniforth, stretchered off in the second half, is on crutches and among them.

  7. 1702: 
    Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy

    The FA Cup trophy is glinting in the Doncaster sunshine as the Arsenal players wait for their skipper Steph Houghton to be called to lift it. In the meantime, they are dancing and spraying champagne around... as you do when you win the FA Cup.

  8. 1700: 
    Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy

    Arsenal manager Shelley Kerr: "For me, it is all about the players, they were magnificent today. Before the game, I just said to them 'relax'. We had been playing good football and sometimes you just have to be patient. I thought we won comfortably in the end."

  9. 1659: 
    Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy

    Steph Houghton has just handed a bottle of champagne to Jordan Nobbs, her reward for being the FA's player of the match. It won't be long until they both get their hands on the FA Cup.

  10. 1658: 
    Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy

    Arsenal goalscorer Steph Houghton: "Before we went out we said we wanted to start quickly and we did that. Over the 90 minutes we were the better team and we have proved a few people who wrote us off wrong."

  11. 1657: 
    Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy - Ellen White (94 mins)

    Arsenal Ladies have won their 12th FA Cup. Their new manager Shelley Kerr has won her first. Now the celebrations can begin.

  12. 1656: 
    CHAMPAGNE MOMENT- Arsenal win the 2013 FA Women's Cup
  13. 1656: 
    FULL-TIME- Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy
  14. 1655: 
    GREAT SAVE!- Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy

    Fair play to Bristol, they are still in search of a consolation. They would get it too, if not for a fine sprawling save from Emma Byrne to deny Laura Del Rio.

  15. 1653: 
    GOAL- Arsenal Ladies 3-0 Bristol Academy - Ellen White (94 mins)

    That's the FA Women's Cup signed sealed and delivered for Arsenal. They can put the red and white ribbons on the trophy now. The Gunners break again and this time find the finishing touch, with Gemma Davison finding Jordan Nobbs. Her shot is saved by the brave Siobhan Chamberlain but Ellen White is in the right place to convert the rebound. Game over.

  16. 1652: 

    A couple of changes for the Gunners. Ciara Grant and Jennifer Beattie are off. Yvonne Tracey and Jade Bailey, seen as the Gunners' next big star, are on.

  17. 1650: 
    Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy

    It is end to end stuff now, with Bristol leaving players upfield and Arsenal waiting to break down the other end. The Gunners are the latest to threaten too, with Gemma Davison getting on the end of a searching ball by Kim Little and cutting in from the left to fire a low shot that Siobhan Chamberlain does well to deal with.

  18. 1649: 
    INJURY TIME- Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy

    Here's the answer: SIX added minutes.

  19. 1648: 
    Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy

    Bristol are plugging away but they cannot find the final ball in the box, with Natalia guilty of wasting possession this time. The clock keeps ticking too, and we are now in the last minute of the 90. How much stoppage time will there be, though?

  20. 1645: 
    PLAYER OF THE MATCH- Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy

    The Football Association has just named Arsenal goalscorer Jordan Nobbs as their player of the match. I can't argue too much with that one, although Bristol keeper Siobhan Chamberlain has had a stormer to keep her team in the game for so long.

  21. 1644: 
    SUBSTITUTION- Arsenal's Danielle Carter for Rachel Yankey

    A change for Arsenal, and a fresh pair of legs in their attack.

  22. 1643: 
    Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy

    Arsenal are within five minutes (plus stoppages) of their 12th FA Women's Cup. Bristol need something special here to save this one, and at the moment they are pumping long balls forward. That's not going to be good enough.


    Ruan Tremayne: In fairness I did miss the 1st half but overall I do feel that the g'keeper position is a long way behind the rest of the game. #fawomenscup

  24. 1640: 
    Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy

    We are into the last nine minutes at the Keepmoat. Bristol are getting pretty desperate here. A third Arsenal goal would finish this, though.

  25. 1639: 
    Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy

    We saw the pace of Jordan Nobbs in the first half and, with Bristol pouring forward, she is going to feature more and more as Arsenal break. She finds acres of space to run clear this time, but takes one touch too many as she gets into the area and Bristol goalkeeper Siobhan Chamberlain is off her line sharply to block.

  26. 1638: 
    Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy

    It's good to see injured Bristol player Lucy Staniforth making her way back to the bench. She is on crutches and her leg is still heavily strapped, but I hope that is a good sign.


    Laura: Here comes del rio. Things could get interesting. It's not over yet @bristolacademy @ArsenalLadies #fawomenscup

    Adrian Worton: Fantastic cross and header for 2-0 Arsenal, Nobbs has been a stand-out player for them and has deserved the goal.

    Gill Cooper: 2-0 Arsenal, lovely measured header by Jordan Nobbs loops over Chamberlain's head #FAWomensCupFinal #COYG #FAWomensCup #ALFC

  28. 1635: 
    Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy

    Mind you, I think we might see a goal soon whatever happens. Bristol have pushed a lot of players forward and are essentially playing three at the back. Arsenal look very dangerous down the wings and, since their second goal, Ellen White has found space to fire a dangerous cross-shot into the box.

  29. 1634: 
    Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy

    Del Rio almost has an instant impact, and we have just seen Natalia's quality in front of goal for the first time today. Del Rio sent Harding scampering forward and her cross found Natalia, who swivelled to fire a spectacular overhead kick over the bar.

  30. 1633: 
    SUBSTITUTION- Bristol's Laura Del Rio for Loren Dykes

    She's not fit, she's carrying a hamstring injury, but Bristol need her inspiration. Spanish playmaker Laura Del Rio is on for the last 15 minutes.

    Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy

    BBC co-commentator Lucy Ward on BBC Two: "It was not the best defending but the header needed to be accurate to beat a keeper of Chamberlain's quality and it was perfectly placed."

  32. 1630: 
    GOAL- Arsenal Ladies 2-0 Bristol Academy - Jordan Nobbs (72 mins)

    Arsenal have got some breathing space now, and one hand on the trophy, thanks to another well-taken goal. Gemma Davison charges down a Corinne Yorston clearance down the left and composes herself before sending over a looping cross towards the back post. Jordan Nobbs, one of the smallest players on the pitch, is there - arriving late to nod the ball back across Siobhan Chamberlain and into the net.

  33. 1629: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    There is a slightly subdued atmosphere at the ground following that nasty injury but Bristol have looked the brightest since we resumed.

    Corinne Yorston scuffs a shot from the edge of the area but the Vixens are quickly coming forward again, and it takes a confident defensive header by Ciara Grant to deal with an awkward bouncing ball into the area. The otherwise anonymous Natalia was lurking for Bristol in case of any mistakes.

  34. 1626: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    We have got about 23 minutes of the 90 left at the Keepmoat, but I would imagine that we will see a substantial amount of stoppage time following that injury to Lucy Staniforth.

  35. 1624: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Lucy Staniforth is applauded as she is carried off, with her leg in a brace. I'll bring you updates on her injury as soon as I get them.

  36. 1623: 
    SUBSTITUTION- Bristol's Grace McCatty for Lucy Staniforth

    Grace McCatty is about to come on for Bristol. In the meantime, boss Mark Sampson is delivering a pep-talk to his players.

  37. 1622: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    We are going to have a delay while Lucy Staniforth gets treatment before she is stretchered off the pitch.

  38. 1620: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Bristol's Lucy Staniforth screams with pain after twisting her knee as she controlled a dropping ball near the halfway line. Both her legs seemed to buckle under her. This is a nasty-looking injury, and I just hope it is not a serious one.

  39. 1618: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Arsenal threaten again, with Gilly Flaherty going close with a header from a corner. Bristol are hanging on a bit here.


    Ruan Tremayne: I've always been curious as to why, despite the huge improvements in women's football, I've yet to see a good women's goalie.

    Ruan obviously did not watch the first half of this game, when Siobhan Chamberlain made a string of superb saves. As BBC co-commentator Lucy Ward says, technically Chamberlain is very strong.

  41. 1616: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Another sniff for the Gunners, after Siobhan Chamberlain's first wobble of the game, just failing to collect a ball that was bouncing away from her. Arsenal collect it, and Rachel Yankey tees up Steph Houghton from 25 yards out, but her shot is high and wide of Chamberlain's goal.

  42. 1614: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Arsenal's best effort for a long time. Rachel Yankey steps up to bend in a swerving free-kick from the right-hand corner of the area that is only a couple of yards over Siobhan Chamberlain's bar. A sign the Gunners are about to step things up again?

  43. 1611: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Arsenal have been a bit slow out of the blocks in this second half and things are just not happening for them when they get into the Bristol half. That's partly down to the Vixens getting a bit closer to them than they were doing earlier.

  44. 1609: 
    YELLOW CARD- Arsenal's Emma Byrne

    Byrne is in the thick of the action from the resulting corner too, throwing a fist at the ball as it comes across her six yard box but failing to make contact. She angrily complains that she was fouled, but her protests only earn her a yellow card.

  45. 1607: 
    CLOSE!- Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Lucy Staniforth takes it... and whips her low free-kick through the Arsenal wall. Gunners keeper Emma Byrne sees it late but manages to scoop it round her right-hand post. Only just, though.

  46. 1605: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Well, Bristol began by conceding a free-kick about 30 yards out but they have settled down and are enjoying some possession in the Arsenal half. They have just won a free-kick of their own, on the left-hand side of the box...

  47. 1604: 
    KICK-OFF- Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Bristol get us back under way. They will hope to make a better start to the second half than they did for the first...

  48. 1603: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    The players are back out for the second half at the Keepmoat. Bristol are going to make a change - former Arsenal star Angharad James is on for the injured Alex Windell.


    moya dodd: Congrats @BBCSport on #FAWomensCup coverage. V.knowledgable panel of England internationals with hundreds of caps between them!


    Jane Thompson: Started the day thinking I may be an arsenal fan but Bristol are showing a lot of heart #greatgame #fawomenscup

    Fliss Carroll: @Sio_Chamberlain is on fire, keeping @bristolacademy in the game! #safehands #FAWomensCup

    Matt Annis: Wish my girls team could spray passes around the pitch like some of these women can #FAWomensCup #workingprogress


    Lincoln Ladies and England defender Casey Stoney on BBC Two: "Bristol are playing on the back foot, they are giving Arsenal's wide players too much space. It was a brave decision to go 4-4-2, especially as they're so used to playing 4-3-3. They're asking far too much of their wide midfielders. They need to get tighter and close the gaps in the second half. It wouldn't surprise me if Mark Sampson changes things at half-time."


    Emily Martin: The only reason Arsenal aren't out of sight is because of Bristol goalkeeper @Sio_Chamberlain. Great performance from her.

    Marion O'Sullivan: Chamberlain has been busy. Bristol defending well but need to start creating chances in second half.

    John Percival: Interesting first half in #FAwomenscup - Arsenal clearly the better side but Bristol still in it


    Former Arsenal and England captain Faye White, a nine-time Women's FA Cup winner with the Gunners, on BBC Two: "Arsenal started so brightly and to score within 90 seconds was ideal for them and the worst thing for Bristol - in the first 20 minutes I am not sure Bristol knew what hit them.

    "I am surprised Bristol have started by playing 4-4-2 because they normally play 4-3-3. Some of their players seemed a little bit slow to react to play early on - in big games like this, it is always very difficult with a young team to compose yourselves and settle down."

  54. 1548: 
    HALF-TIME- Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy
  55. 1547: 
    INJURY TIME- Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    And we will get one minute of stoppage time at the end of it.

  56. 1546: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    A short delay while Bristol's Alex Windell gets treatment. Her team-mates gather in a huddle until the game restarts... there is less than a minute of the first half remaining.

  57. 1544: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Jonathan Pearce is making a very good point on the BBC commentary. Like him, I heard a lot about Bristol striker Natalia - "the female Michu" - before the game, but I have not seen anything of her at all since it started. The Spanish forward has had a very quiet first half. Is she actually on the pitch?

  58. 1543: 
    GREAT SAVE!- Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Arsenal have upped their game again and they are not far away from operating a 'shoot on sight' policy. Alex Scott looks up on the edge of the area and lets fly, forcing Bristol keeper Siobhan Chamberlain into another flying stop.

    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    BBC co-commentator Lucy Ward on BBC Two: "It was a terrific counter-attack from Arsenal, Nobbs ran a long way with pretty much no pressure on her. It was a great run and great effort and the keeper will be relieved the ball has came back into her arms off the post."

  60. 1542: 
    HITS THE WOODWORK- Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    What a run this is from Arsenal's Jordan Nobbs, who surges up the field when a Bristol free-kick is easily cleared and, seconds later, arrives unopposed in the Bristol area. She is that quick, nobody could catch her, and she almost extends her side's lead. I say almost, because her angled shot beats Vixens keeper Siobhan Chamberlain but rattles against the post and bounces back into Chamberlanin's hands.

  61. 1540: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    It's been a little while since Arsenal's last shooting chance, but here is Ellen White again, dashing into the box and then drilling the ball over the bar. She sliced that one a bit, but it was there to be hit. The Gunners still lead 1-0, and we are into the final eight minutes of the first half.

  62. 1537: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Hmmm. Gunners keeper Emma Byrne is still very casual when the ball comes to her feet, however. On this occasion she hesitates out near the edge of the box on her right-hand byline and then plays a very dangerous pass out to her defender. Bristol's players read it, but they cannot quite get there in time.

  63. 1534: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Another Bristol set-piece. This time a free-kick near the corner flag. Jemma Rose attacks the ball when it is fired into the area but Gunners keeper Emma Byrne deals well with it. 10 minutes to go to half-time, and this has been a much better spell for the Vixens.


    Aleksandra B.: Arsenal Ladies dominating the #FAWomensCup Final. Keep it up, girls!

    Steph Oscroft: Watching the Women's FA Cup Final between Arsenal & Bristol... great to be able to watch Women's Football live on the BBC

    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    BBC co-commentator Lucy Ward on BBC Two: "If Bristol can get through this Arsenal midfield then they know they can cause them problems. For me they are playing far too deep. They need to move their game forward by five or 10 yards to put Arsenal under a lot more pressure."

  66. 1529: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    More Bristol pressure, and they are getting closer. Well, sort of. Ann-Marie Heatherson does well to fight her way down the left wing and the ball ends up bouncing into Nikki Watts' path, about 25 yards from goal.

    She has a pop with an instinctive first-time shot but gets too much on it and sees it fly over. A little more dip, and a little less zip, and that would have troubled Emma Byrne... who has still not had a save to make after almost half-an-hour.

  67. 1527: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Better from Bristol. They work the ball forward this time, and Corinne Yorston, waiting on the edge of the area, meets a cut-back with a first-time shot. It is on her weaker right foot, though, and ends up rolling harmlessly out of play.

  68. 1525: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Bristol's best moments have come from set-pieces and, the way this game is going, they need to make them count. Corinne Yorston, who hit the post from her last corner, swings in a much deeper delivery this time... but it eludes Ann-Marie Heatherson, arriving late at the far stick, and bounces out of play.

  69. 1523: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Bristol are still allowing Arsenal far too much space when the Gunners advance into their half. This time Kim Little wriggles free and feeds Ellen White on the edge of the area to fire in a low shot. It was a daisy-cutter, and well off target, but yet another warning for Bristol.

  70. 1522: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    So, 20 minutes gone at Doncaster's Keepmoat Stadium. Bristol have not really got going yet.


    Jack Garwood: Could've controlled that, great save though

    Ginge: What a save

    Stephen Bush: I feel sure that Arsenal will rue these missed chances.

    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    BBC co-commentator Lucy Ward on BBC Two, on that Ellen White chance: "Both the centre-halves stepped out and that is inviting trouble. It was a great effort and a great save but I think if Ellen White had realised how much time she had, she would have taken a touch before shooting."

  73. 1517: 
    GREAT SAVE!- Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Arsenal should be 2-0 up... and they would be if not for Bristol keeper Siobhan Chamberlain, who is showing exactly why she is an England international. This time, the Gunners are given time to spray some passes around and, when the ball comes into the area, Ellen White is completely unmarked to try to slot home. Fortunately for Bristol, Chamberlain dives to her right to claw the ball to safety. A super stop.

  74. 1515: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Bristol keeper Siobhan Chamberlain is busy again, punching a free-kick away from the danger zone At the other end, her Gunners counterpart Emma Byrne is still not looking too comfortable whenever the ball comes her way. She has just made a bit of a mess of another routine clearance.

  75. 1513: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Here come Arsenal Ladies again. Ellen White spots Bristol keeper Siobhan Chamberlain off her line and tries her luck from range... Chamberlain recovers to push the ball away.

  76. 1511: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    Another wobble for Arsenal. Their goalkeeper Emma Byrne makes a bit of a hash of a backpass and concedes a corner. The Gunners are doing a lot better at the other end, and Steph Houghton looks dangerous every time the ball comes into the box.


    Nadine Dixon: What a start from @ArsenalLadies and the captain @stephhoughton2!! 1-0. Great ball by Yankey!!

    Claire Edwards: woohoo!! What a goal! That's what happens when u boo Yankey, Houghton woops u with a goal! :p

    Claire Hinch: What a start by Arsenal Ladies

  78. 1507: 
    HITS THE WOODWORK- Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    The equaliser almost arrives straight from that corner. Corinne Yorston's delivery smacks against the near post, and Jemma Rose fires the rebound over from six yards out.

  79. 1506: 
    Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy

    On the upside for Bristol, they still have time on their side to get back into this game. They have just earned their first corner.

  80. 1504: 
    GOAL- Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Bristol Academy - Steph Houghton (2 mins)

    The perfect start for Arsenal, but the nightmare scenario for Bristol. The Gunners first attack sees the ball fed out to Rachel Yankey on the left, and her precise cross finds Steph Houghton at the far post to beat Siobhan Chamberlain with a powerful header.

  81. 1503: 

    It is Bristol who are wearing the colours you would associate with Arsenal - red shirts with white sleeves. The Gunners are in their dark blue away kit.

  82. 1501: 
    Arsenal Ladies v Bristol Academy

    We are under way in Doncaster. Arsenal Ladies have made a slow start to the Super League season but they are still big favourites to beat Bristol Academy. That didn't help Manchester City much against Wigan in the men's FA Cup final, did it?

  83. 1458: 

    It's national anthem time at the Keepmoat. If any of the players do have nerves, I imagine this is when they really start kicking in.

  84. 1457: 

    BBC co-commentator Lucy Ward, who played in the 2006 FA Women's Cup final, scoring an own goal after just three minutes as Leeds Carnegie lost 5-0 to Arsenal Ladies: "Arsenal are favourites for me because they have the experience. They have played in a lot of finals and they will be used to dealing with their nerves. They know how the day works."

  85. 1455: 

    The players are in the tunnel at the Keepmoat. Just time for Arsenal manager Shelley Kerr and Bristol boss Mark Sampson to shake hands before they walk out on to the pitch.

    LINE-UPS- Arsenal Ladies v Bristol Academy (1500 BST)

    Arsenal Ladies: Byrne, Scott, Flaherty, Grant, Beattie, Houghton, Nobbs, Little, Davison, Yankey, White. Subs: Spencer, Tracy, Carter, Bailey, Bruton.

    Bristol Academy: Chamberlain, Dykes, Yorston, Matthews, Pablos Sanchon, Windell, Heatherson, Watts, Rose, Harding, Staniforth. Subs: Kyle, McCatty, Curson, Del Rio, James.

  87. 1450: 

    Not long left until kick-off at the Keepmoat, but a bit of time to check out the rest of this content from the FA. Firstly, their official preview, and then more from Faye White about Arsenal's season so far.

  88. 1446: 

    I mentioned earlier that Arsenal beat Bristol in the FA Women's Cup 2011 final - and you can watch highlights of that 2-0 win for the Gunners here, courtesy of the Football Association.

    Speaking of which, you can also see highlights of the 2012 final between Chelsea and Birmingham City. Birmingham won a thrilling game 3-2 on penalties.

    Arsenal Ladies v Bristol Academy (1500 BST)

    Arsenal coach Shelley Kerr: "These are the types of games you want to play in. At Arsenal the expectation is really high but the girls are well equipped to handle that. We have tried to play it down a bit and perhaps we are not as hot favourites as you might have thought. Bristol have made a very strong start in the league and cup finals are one-off occasions."


    Radd Reynolds: Time to sit back, relax and watch the Womens FA Cup final. Only chance Arsenal have to win some silverware...

    Steph Hicks: Lets Go Arsenal!!!!

    Arsenal Ladies v Bristol Academy (1500 BST)

    Bristol Academy coach Mark Sampson: "We are underdogs but it's no shock to be in that position. The way the players are playing at the moment we're in good shape to cause a surprise. We are a real family football club and my message to the players and fans is be ourselves, leave nothing to chance and really enjoy the day."

  92. 1439: 
    Arsenal Ladies v Bristol Academy (1500 BST)

    The good news for Bristol Academy is that Spanish striker Natalia - known as "the female Michu" - starts up front today. Natalia scored five goals in seven games this season.

    The bad news for Bristol is that their Spanish striker Laura Del Rio is only fit enough to start on the bench.

    Arsenal Ladies v Bristol Academy (1500 BST)

    Former Arsenal captain Faye White on BBC Two: "In the previous matches against Arsenal, Bristol have done really well and they will come into this game feeling they have nothing to lose. They'll have the mentality that they can win this game. They are the underdogs but they will feel confident of causing an upset here."

  94. 1437: 
    Arsenal Ladies coach Shelley Kerr

    So, Arsenal Ladies fans? Time to panic? Not according to their new coach Shelley Kerr, who has been in charge for less than four months. The Gunners have scored 14 goals in three FA Cup ties, knocking out holders Birmingham and also beating Liverpool and Nottingham Forest along the way.

    "We've performed really well in the cup," Kerr said. "The girls have spoken quite a bit about last year and not getting to the final [they lost to Chelsea in the semis]. You always want to get there as a player and now that we are there, we need to try and concentrate on playing the way that we can play."

  95. 1435: 

    Ah, a change of hashtag for you lot on Twitter. Turns out there is a whole different conversation already going on at #FAWomensCup

    Join it. Now.

    You can still text me at 81111. if you want to, though.


    Jamie Wood: "A Bristol FA Cup win might help me forget Bristol City's relegation!"

  97. 1428: 

    Coverage has just started on BBC Two and this website [give this page a refresh if you cannot see it]. The pundits [Faye White, Sue Smith and Casey Stoney] have played in 17 FA Women's Cup finals between them so it is safe to say they know how to deal with any nerves on the big day.

    White says: "I used to put on music and try to zone out. Other players would have a joke and a laugh in the dressing room. But once you come out to warm up then you see how you feel - and you try to run those nerves out."

  98. 1425: 
    Bristol Academy coach Mark Sampson

    It's not just Siobhan [below] who is looking forward to playing Arsenal, either. Bristol boss Mark Sampson was also in charge when the club reached their only previous FA Cup final, in 2011. They lost... to Arsenal. But he detects a very different attitude in his dressing room this time around:

    "There is no fear for our players," Sampson said. "I think in 2011 we went into the game knowing we needed the opponents to have a bad day at the office. We know now, if Arsenal go hell for leather and we go toe to toe, we'll win.

    "That gives you real confidence going into the game in that changing room beforehand - the players will know if they can get it right, they will make history."

  99. 1424: 

    Former Leeds forward Lucy Ward will be joining Jonathan Pearce in the commentary box later... but I want to hear from you lot too.

    Are you backing BRISTOL or ARSENAL to triumph in today's game? Tweet me using #bbcfootball or text me on 81111 to let me know... and tell me why.

    Remember to put your names on those texts, though, or your FA Cup run will end in the first round.

  100. 1420: 
    Faye White

    This game is live on BBC Two and the BBC Sport website [in the UK], with build-up starting at 1425 BST, and we have a stellar line-up of women's footballers past and present joining Jacqui Oatley in the studio.

    Let's start with Former Arsenal and England captain Faye White, a nine-time Women's FA Cup winner with the Gunners. Yes, that's right. NINE-TIMES.

    Then there is Doncaster Rovers Belles and England winger Sue Smith. and Lincoln Ladies and England defender Casey Stoney, a two-time Women's FA Cup winner.

  101. 1416: 
    Bristol Academy goalkeeper Siobhan Chamberlain

    Here's Bristol Academy's England goalkeeper Siobhan Chamberlain on her team's chances today: "Everybody expects Arsenal to win and, historically, yes they do win and they have been very successful.

    "But, if you want to play Arsenal at any time, you want to play them now - their defeat to Liverpool was a big shock for everyone in the Women's Super League. We know that they are beatable and, if we play at our best, we will and we can beat them."

  102. 1412: 

    It is early days, of course, but both these teams have made notable starts to the new season, for radically different reasons.

    Arsenal Ladies, one of the giants of the women's game with 38 major trophies since their formation in 1987, are the reigning Super League champions and 11-time winners of the FA Women's Cup. However, they are in a spot of bother after failing to win either of their first two league games, which included a 4-0 home defeat to Liverpool at the Emirates Stadium on the opening day.

    In contrast, Bristol Academy, who were only formed in 1998 and are yet to win a national trophy, are top of the fledgling table. And it is safe to say they are pretty confident about ending that wait for silverware today...

  103. 1408: 

    By the way, you can ignore what I said about it being the final weekend of the domestic football season on these shores. It's true for the men, but it has not been the case for women since 2011. The Women's Super League is now a summer sporting event, and the latest campaign got under way at the beginning of May.

    Oh, and that sunshine graphic is very appropriate for today's game too. It's a lovely day in Doncaster.

  104. 1404: 
    The Women's FA Cup trophy

    Hopefully you all know what year it is... and hopefully this shiny trophy looks vaguely familiar too [it was modelled on its much older bigger brother].

    Yep, welcome to the FA Women's Cup final: Arsenal Ladies vs Bristol Academy, from Doncaster's Keepmoat Stadium. Who will get to lift this gleaming piece of sterling silverware above their heads in a few hours time?

  105. 1400: 

    It's the FA Cup final... being held on the final weekend of the English football season... AND Arsenal are involved? Er, what year is this? 2003?

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Upcoming Fixtures Wed 1 Apr 2015 - Women's Super League Upcoming Fixtures Thu 2 Apr 2015 - Women's Super League
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