Sunderland Ladies were knocked out of the FA Cup in the quarter-finals after a 5-1 loss at Chelsea.
“We’re obviously disappointed to lose the game as always - no-one’s ever happy with a defeat,” said Sunderland boss Melaine Reay.
“I think there were a few positives to come out of the game. We started well, we were well organised and we took the lead.
“We held them for 35 minutes but the most disappointing thing for us is that we conceded goals in silly times of the game.
“We conceded in the seven minutes before half-time and the seven minutes after half-time and that gave us a massive challenge to go on and win the game.”
Ramona Bachmann scored twice, along with Hannah Blundell, while Drew Spence added a fifth late on.
But Sunderland had frustrated the Blues for large parts of the first half and led through Lucy Staniforth’s penalty – but Chelsea’s quality shone through in the end.
Striker Bachmann was delighted with how they overcame a tough opening period.
“I think the start didn’t go as we thought it would, but how the team reacted was just fantastic,” she said.
“We got two goals just before half-time which was really important it’s good to be leading when you come back out.
“To win the game as we did is really good but I think there’s still stuff we can do better.
“Maybe we dropped the standard a bit in the second half, it’s not always easy when you’re leading 4-1 but it was really good team play.
“I really enjoy playing here, it’s a fantastic team I have behind me.”
Sunderland were under pressure in the first half but remained resilient and even took the lead as Staniforth coolly slotted home a penalty after a foul on Danielle Brown.
However, Chelsea equalised in the 38th minute when Bachmann found herself with plenty of space to chip the ball over Sunderland keeper Anke Preuss, and from there the home side relaxed.
Bachmann then displayed fine footwork, flying through the box and beating two defenders before firing in - taking her side into the lead before half-time.
Blundell grabbed Chelsea’s third and fourth goals, firstly poking the ball past Preuss after a perfect cross from Claire Rafferty before weaving her way through the box to score in a lone effort.
Spence added the fifth goal in the 90th minute, heading in Karen Carney’s cross to round off an emphatic display.
Chelsea: Lindahl, Blundell, Bright, Carney, Ji So Yun (Spence 63), Rafferty (England 58), Chapman, Mjelde, Dunn, Bachmann (Cuthbert 73), Bailey. Subs not used: Kitching, Cooper.
Sunderland: Preuss, Bannon, Sharp, Williams, Holmes, Brown, Staniforth, Hill, Bruinenberg (Joice 61), Roche (Lambert 61), Ramshaw (Galloway 80). Subs not used: Watt, Stonehouse.
Ref: Elliot Kaye Attendance: 682
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