Ladies reaction: Given the chance

Erin Cuthbert was delighted to score her first Chelsea Ladies hat-trick at the weekend, although the Scot admits she owes Karen Carney a debt of gratitude.

The Blues were 10-0 winners against London Bees on Sunday, a result which secured a Women’s FA Cup fifth-round tie against Doncaster Rovers Belles at Kingsmeadow on Sunday 18 February, kick-off 2pm.

Cuthbert opened the scoring at the Hive and added two late goals, including a penalty, to seal her treble, although she admitted she did not know if the opportunity would come her way.

‘I wasn't planning on taking it,’ she said of the spot-kick which brought up her hat-trick. ‘Kaz is the designated penalty taker and she asked how many I was on. She was nice enough to let me take it. It's all thanks to her!

‘This is my first hat-trick for Chelsea and it's a special feeling to do it in the FA Cup.

‘I'm just really lucky to play in a team that creates so many chances. We all want to make goals for each other and me creating chances for someone else helps me to get goals too, because they want to set me up.’

After our last trip to the Hive, in 2016, had ended with a surprise defeat in a penalty shoot-out to eliminate us from the Continental Tyres Cup, it was clear from the first whistle that Emma Hayes’ side were up for this one.

Although Cuthbert had not yet joined the club at the time of that loss, she admitted it was mentioned in the build-up.

‘I've heard about it, and we didn't want to slack in this game,’ she said. ‘After a big match against Man City on Thursday night, it would have been easy for us to come here and look leggy, but we've got a squad which showed its quality. We can make changes and still be relentless for 90 minutes.

‘We really showed our class and we were relentless. They couldn't live with us and that's what we're capable of.

‘My first goal, a nice little chip, got the team off to a good start and we never gave them any confidence. We were able to put the game to bed early.’

Cuthbert and the rest of the Chelsea Ladies squad are back in action on Saturday with a trip to Solihull Moors to face Birmingham City. Kick-off is at 2pm.