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ji so-yun

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Chelsea Ladies 24-year-old star Fran Kirby has been nominated PFA Women’s Players’ Player of the Year.

Also six of her team-mates were included in the nomination, with  Ji So-Yun and Maren Mjelde respectively in 2nd and 3rd place. 

Kirby was the goalscorer in the team who won the WSL Spring Series, while has scored 22 goals in the current season so far. She also netted a brace in the FA Cup semi-final victory over Manchester City.

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Chelsea Ladies progressed to the round of 16 in the Champions League as they beat Glasgow Ladies 0-3 at the Excelsior Stadium in Airdrie, with a 4-0 aggregate scoreline.

After the Blues’ 1-0 win in Staines in the first leg, goals from Eniola Aluko, Fran Kirby and Gilly Flaherty ensuring a comfortable win for Emma Hayes’ side.

Despite making Glasgow keeper Lee Alexander come off her line on several occasions, neither side really made an impact upfront in the first half as Chelsea seemed keen to defend their lead established last week.

However, England striker Aluko did break the deadlock after 22 minutes, skipping across the edge of the box before unleashing a powerful yet accurate strike into the top left hand corner, putting the visitors in control.

The host’s best chance came just before the hour mark, Clare Shine seeing her shot blocked by Blues keeper Hedvig Lindahl.

But, a minute later, Kirby grabbed the second and effectively the match. The former Reading striker was given too much space on the edge of the box, and made no mistake with a thunderous and swerving strike past Alexander.

Four minutes later, Chelsea added more gloss to the scoreline as Flaherty was found unmarked in the box by a wonderful cross from Ji So-Yun, the Blues vice-captain heading in from eight yards out.

Aluko then smacked the woodwork and missed another good chance, but it didn’t matter as Chelsea continued their European journey.

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Chelsea Ladies took one more step to securing their first WSL title with a 0-4 win over Liverpool Ladies.

A double from Ji So-Yun and strikes from Eniola Aluko and Fran Kirby secured a comfortable win for Emma Hayes’ side.

The home side hit the woodwork twice with the score at 0-0, but Chelsea were clinical when it mattered.

The Blues have now also secured Champions League football for the winter of 2016/17.

They can win the title if they beat Sunderland next Sunday.

Liverpool Ladies: Stout, Harris, Bonner, Omarsdottir, Dowie, Smorgard (Oshoala 77), White, Ryland (Pacheco 46), Zelem, Staniforth (Hodson 64), Murray.

Substitutes not used: Derbyshite, Easton.

Chelsea Ladies: Lindahl, Blundell, Flaherty, Fahey, Davison, Aluko (Borges 71), Ji, Rafferty, Kirby, Chapman (Bright 57), Spence (Coombs 74).

Substitutes not used: Hourihan, Ayane.

Attendance: 1,013


In the league’s other games, Bristol Academy’s disastrous season finally culminated in relegation after they lost 6-1 at Manchester City. The hosts led 3-0 at the break thanks to goals from Jill Scott, Isobel Christiansen and Lucy Bronze.
Nikita Parris added a fourth, Christiansen netted her second from the spot and Georgia Stanway made it six.
Caroline Weir netted a consolation goal as Bristol were condemned to WSL2. City meanwhile ensured that the WSL1 title race would go down to the final day.

Sunderland’s slim hopes of Champions League football next season were dashed as they lost 1-3 to Arsenal, who themselves have kept their title hopes alive. Striker Ubogagu stabbed home the opener, only for Beth Mead to to round Sari Van Veenendaal for the equaliser.
Another close-range finish from Ubogagu made it 2-1 before Natalia Pablos curled in a third for Arsenal.

In WSL2, Doncaster and Reading both secured promotion to the top flight after Yeovil failed to overcome Oxford.

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Chelsea Ladies have lifted their first-ever piece of silverware after beating Notts County 1-0 in the FA Women’s Cup Final.

Ji So-Yun gave the Female Blues the lead just before half time, and that proved to be the winning goal as the Magpies offered little upfront.

The Blues started the game, the first final of the competition to be held at Wembley, in the passenger seat as County started the brighter side. But, they made no significant inroads as Chelsea settled into the game, defender Claire Rafferty holding the back line.

And it was Chelsea who had the first real chance of the game 30 minutes in. Eniola Aluko, who has previously won the FA Cup with Charlton, met a well-weighted Gemma Davison pass. But, the England striker could only fire the ball into the side netting despite getting around County keeper Carly Telford.

Minutes later, however, Emma Hayes’ side took the lead. A Davison volley from the left looked to rolling wide, before Ji poked the ball home to put Chelsea in front.

The Blues again looked comfortable as the second half began, with Davison regularly making dangerous runs down the left hand side as Chelsea pushed for a second.

However, Rick Passmoor’s County came inches away from an equaliser on the hour mark. A fierce strike from Canada international Desiree Scott was palmed away for a corner, and from the set piece Leanna Critchon had her header cleared off the line by Davison, who later shot well over the bar.

Telford then answered any questions about her fitness when she got a strong diving hand to Aluko’s strike, despite having only recently recovered from a dislocated shoulder.

With an end-to-end game hotting up, Chelsea vice-captain Gilly Flaherty missed a huge chance to put her side two goals up, but she could only fire over from five yards out, after yet more good work from Aluko.

As the game wore on, County turned to desperation, with long balls forward from the back their last roll of the dice in their first ever FA Womens Cup Final.

But, the Blues held out as they lifted their first-ever trophy infront a record crowd of 30,710.

Chelsea Ladies: Lindahl; Blundell, Flaherty, Fahey, C Rafferty; Chapman (c), Bright, Spence; Davison, Ji So-Yun (Coombs, 89′), Aluko (Borges, 80′).

Subs not used: Hourihan, Brett, Banusic.

Notts County Ladies: Telford, Greenwood, Buet (Whelan, 76′), Clarke, Williams (Susi, 56′), White, Scott, Walton, Turner, Crichton (O’Sullivan, 82′), Bassett.

Subs not used: Plumptre, O’Neill


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Ji So-Yun

In anticipation for the Women’s World Cup, PFA Women’s Player of the Year Ji So-Yun spoke to the official Chelsea website on her participation.

“It’s my first World Cup experience, so obviously I’m really looking forward to it,” the Chelsea star began, stating how excited her and the rest of South Korea are for the tournament.

So-Yun hopes that her success at Chelsea will help to spark further interest in the national team: “Women’s football is much bigger in England but there’s a lot of excitement back home in Korea for this tournament,” The 24 year-old commented.

“Everybody has high hopes for the team. Since I won the PFA award, there’s been a lot of support for me in South Korea and I think that has increased people’s hopes for the national team to do well in Canada.”

The forward then went on to discuss the possibility of meeting her fellow Chelsea team mates at some point in the tournament, such as England’s Eniola Aluko and Sweden’s Hedvig Lindahl : I obviously hope they do well and I think they will stand out in Canada. I hope we get the opportunity to play against each other at some point, hopefully towards the end of the tournament. That would be a great experience for me because we would have to put our friendships aside for 90 minutes and fight against each other.”

As Women’s Sports Week goes underway, So-Yun and the other members of Chelsea Ladies will hope to show of the talents on the world stage.


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Ji So-Yun

Chelsea Ladies booked their place in the FA Womens Cup with a narrow 1-0 win over Manchester City.

Blues midfielder Ji So-Yun, who recently won the PFA Women’s Player of the Year, scored the winning goal in a tight game.

Chelsea will play Notts County in the Final at Wembley, with Emma Hayes’ side continuing their impressive 100% record in all competitions this season.

The home side started well; Eniola Aluko striking the post in the first half.

City, boosted by the return of Steph Houghton, almost punished Chelsea for the miss as on-loan Everton striker Nikita Parris fired narrowly wide.

Both sides grew into the game as it went on, with Gemma Davidson forcing a good save from City keeper Alex Brooks, before firing a second chance wide.

Brooks, who replaced regular City keeper Karen Bardsley in goal, then produced a fine stop to turn away Millie Bright’s header.

In the second half, Chelsea were lucky not to go a goal down as Parris had a fierce shot saved by keeper Hedvig Lindahl. Natasha Harding looked certain to tuck away the rebound, but her effort was brilliantly cleared off the line.

Lindahl then added to her collection of fine saves as the Swedish international bravely denied Toni Duggan from close range after she met Parris’ perfect cross.

Chelsea then punished City for the wastefulness infront of goal. Drew Spence was played through, and squared the ball to So-Yun, who from outside the area finished superbly to win the game for the Female Blues.

Chelsea will face FA Cup Final debutants Notts County, as they beat second division Everton 0-3, with goals from Ellen White, Danielle Beut and Jess Clarke securing a somewhat easy victory.

Ladies manager Emma Hayes said after the game how pleased she was with the performance, and in particular the performance of starlet So-Yun:

“For any team to get to Wembley is a dream come true, it really is.
“We played a very good Manchester City team, but a bit of quality in the final third from our little magician was the difference.
“I don’t know why we didn’t shoot more in the second half. It was a wonderful shot into the bottom corner. I’m very proud of her (Ji So-Yun).”

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PFA Team of the Year Chelsea players
Some of the Chelsea players at the PFA awards ceremony last night at the Grosvenor Hotel in London

The PFA Player of the Year Awards were given out at a reception at the Grosvenor Hotel in London last night, and we round up who won what as the 2014-15 season draws to a close. The list was voted for by players from 100 clubs from the Premier League, Football League and Women’s Super League.

PFA Player of the Year

Winner – Eden Hazard (Chelsea)

Shortlisted – Diego Costa (Chelsea), Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal), David de Gea (Manchester United), Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur), Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool)


As was expected by many, Chelsea midfielder Eden Hazard was awarded the Player of the Year trophy after what has been a brilliant season for the Belgian. With Chelsea on course to lift their first Premier League title since 2010, Hazard’s consistenly good performances have been instrumental in maintaining the Blues’ dominance this season. The 24-year old has scored 13 goals and grabbed nine assists this season.


PFA Young Player of the Year

Winner – Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur)

Shortlisted – Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool), David de Gea (Manchester United), Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea), Raheem Sterling (Liverpool)


It has also been a fantastic season for young Tottenham striker Harry Kane. Although he didn’t score his first goal this season until November, he has been scoring them for fun since with an incredible 20 goals. He is currently the joint top-goal scorer in the Premier League, whilst becoming the first Spurs player to break the 30 goal threshold in all competitions since Gary Lineker in the 1991/92 season. Two of those goals included a winning brace against London rivals Arsenal.


PFA Women’s Player of the Year

Winner – Ji So-Yun (Chelsea)

Shortlisted – Eniola Aluko (Chelsea), Lucy Bronze (Manchester City), Karen Carney (Birmingham City), Jess Clarke (Notts County), Kelly Smith (Arsenal)


Nicknamed ‘The Korean Messi’, Ji So-Yun has had another good season for Chelsea Ladies. The South Korea international enjoyed a fine debut season in England after joining from Japanese side Kobe INAC Leonessa last year. Having been named FA WSL 1 Players’ Player of the Year at the FA Women’s Awards Last November, after helping Chelsea to second place in the top league, she is now the PFA Women’s Players’ Player of the Year 2015.


PFA Young Women’s Player of the Year

Winner – Leah Williamson (Arsenal)

Shortlisted – Freda Ayisi (Birmingham City), Hannah Blundell (Chelsea), Aoife Mannion (Birmingham City), Nikita Parris (Manchester City – on loan from Everton), Amy Turner (Notts County)


Having been the star of the England Under-19 penalty incident, 18-year old Leah Williamson has been a star performer for the Female Gunners since joining the club at the age of nine. She has shown bags of talent since, with great vision and being strong in a tackle.


PFA Merit Awards

Former England midfielders Steven Gerrard, 34, and Frank Lampard, 36, shared the PFA Merit award. The veteran pair will leave the Premier League for Major League Soccer in the United States in the summer, having collected 220 England caps between them.


PFA Premier League Team of the Year


There are six Chelsea players in this year’s team, three of which make up the back four. Ryan Bertrand makes up the back line after an impressive first full season at Southampton. Alexis Sanchez and Diego Costa get into the team after their debut season.

The team – David De Gea (Manchester United), Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea), John Terry (Chelsea), Gary Cahill (Chelsea), Ryan Bertrand (Southampton), Nemanja Matic (Chelsea), Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal), Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Diego Costa (Chelsea), Harry Kane (Tottenham).


PFA Women’s Team of the Year


Last year’s winner of the Women’s Player of the Year, Lucy Bronze, gets into the team along with Casey Stoney and Emma Mitchell from Arsenal. Nikita Parris gets into the team after an impressive season with Everton last term despite the Toffees being relegated to WSL2. Ji So Yun also gets into the team after winning the Women’s Player of the Year.

The team – Carly Telford (Notts County), Lucy Bronze (Liverpool), Casey Stoney (Arsenal), Rachel Corsie (Notts County – now Seattle Reign), Emma Mitchell (Arsenal); Ji So-Yun (Chelsea), Jill Scott (Manchester City), Jo Potter (Birmingham City), Karen Carney (Birmingham City); Nikita Parris (Everton), Eniola Aluko (Chelsea).


PFA Championship Team of the Year


Championship Player of the Year Patrick Bamford is a somewhat surprising omission from the team. Watford striker Troy Deeney is the only player to be included from the north London side, despite the Hornets being the first side to be promoted. Alex Pritchard is included after a great season on loan at Brentford, whilst Russell Martin is recognised for his solid performances at the back for Norwich City.

The team – Kieren Westwood (Sheffield Wednesday); Simon Francis (Bournemouth), Richard Keogh (Derby County), Russell Martin (Norwich City), George Friend (Middlesbrough); Grant Leadbitter (Middlesbrough); Matt Ritchie (Bournemouth), Bakary Sako (Wolves), Alex Pritchard (Brentford – on loan from Tottenham); Troy Deeney (Watford), Daryl Murphy (Ipswich Town).


PFA League 1 Team of the Year


The team – Frank Fielding (Bristol City); Nathan Byrne (Swindon Town), Tom Clarke (Preston North End), Aden Flint (Bristol City), Joe Bryan (Bristol City); Dele Alli (MK Dons); Luke Freeman (Bristol City), Massimo Luongo (Swindon Town), Korey Smith (Bristol City); Joe Garner (Preston North End), Eoin Doyle (Chesterfield – now Cardiff City).


PFA League 2 Team of the Year


The team – Daniel Bentley (Southend United); Phil Edwards (Burton Albion), Steve McNulty (Luton Town), Connor Goldson (Shrewsbury Town), Ben Coker (Southend United); Ryan Woods (Shrewsbury Town), Matt Grimes (Exeter City – now Swansea City), Jed Wallace (Portsmouth), Danny Mayor (Bury); Matt Tubbs (Portsmouth), Reuben Reid (Plymouth Argyle).


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Chapman has scored twice this season

Chelsea Ladies continued their impressive 100% record this season after they beat Birmingham City 0-1.

It’s four wins from four games so far for Emma Hayes’ side, as a single goal from captain Katie Chapman was enough to seal victory.

Birmingham are still without a win or a home goal this season in the WSL, having claimed a meagre two points from their opening four games.

Chapman scored early on, lobbing a crowd of players after the home side failed to clear Ji So-Yun’s corner.

At half time, Birmingham brought on club captain Karen Carney and fellow striker Freda Ayisi, the two returning from injury and suspension respectively. However, David Parker’s side failed to really threaten, and Chelsea defender Gilly Flaherty struck the post.

Chelsea held on however, as they continued their stay at the top of table, two points ahead of second-placed Arsenal, who they face on Thursday.

After the game, Ladies boss Emma Hayes said her side thoroughly deserved the win:

“It was thoroughly deserved today and I think 1-0 flattered the opposition.

“We created a lot of chances. The most disappointing thing about today is that we didn’t convert more of the chances we created.”


Birmingham City Ladies: Spencer, Sargeant, Carter, Mannion, Harrop, Allen (Linnett, 75′), Porter, Moore (C), Lawley, Stringer (Carney, 45′), Westwood (Ayisi, 45′).

Subs not used: Baggaley, Windell

Chelsea Ladies: Lindahl, Bright, Flaherty, Fahey, Davison (Groenen, 82′), Aluko, So-Yun (Banusic, 90′), Rafferty, Borges, Chapman (C), Spence (Coombs, 89′).

Subs not used: Hourihan, Blundell, Brett, Meiwald.

Referee: Lisa Rashid


In the league’s other games, Arsenal beat Sunderland 4-1 to keep up the pressure on Chelsea. A brace from Natalia Pablos Sanchon, as well as goals from Carla Humphrey and Danielle Carter, secured an impressive win against the Teesiders despite Beth Mead pulling a goal back. The Female Black Cats did finish the game a woman light, however, as Abby Smith was sent off for bringing down Kelly Smith in the area. Sunderland move down to fourth.

With Sunderland losing, Liverpool Ladies took advantage as they moved to third following a 2-1 win over Manchester City. It’s only the second victory of the season for the Reds, but they scored the opener through Asisat Oshoala after she followed up a save from City keeper Alex Brooks. Nikita Parris levelled things up for the visitors with a header in the second half, but Line Smorsgard met a clever flicked cross from Oshoala to head in the winner just before the hour. City now drop to sixth after claiming just four points from their opening four games.

Bristol Academy’s dismal start to the season continued as they were thumped 2-5 by Notts County. This seventh loss of the season in all competitions for the home side came 48 hours after manager Dave Edmonson was sacked, whilst a first victory of the season for the Magpies moved them up to fifth. Aileen Whelan put Notts ahead before two goals in two minutes from Rachel Williams and Fern Whelan made it 3-0. Sophie Ingle and Nicola Watts replied for the hosts but Williams’ second and Alex Greenwood’s penalty made it 5-2. Bristol are without a point this year.


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Chelsea star Eden Hazard with the PFA Players' Player of the Year award

Chelsea star Eden Hazard has been named PFA Players’ Player of the Year.

The Belgian was named ahead of Chelsea team-mate Diego Costa, Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez, Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho, Manchester United’s David de Gea and Tottenham’s Harry Kane.

Kane could consol himself however, as he won the PFA Young Player of the Year award, while Chelsea midfielder Ji So-Yun took the Women’s Player of the Year award.

The trophy was presented tonight at the Grosvenor Hotel in London, and Hazard – clearly satisfied with the prize – said:

“I’m very happy. One day I want to be the best and what I did this season is play very well, Chelsea played very well.

“I don’t know if I deserve to win but it is good for me. It is better to be voted by the players – they know everything about football.

“Personally I have played a good season, I have been there in the big games and I scored a lot of important goals, this is why I’m better this season.”

It’s been a brilliant season for the Belgian, with eight goals and seven assists this season as the Blues look to claim their first title since 2010.


French striker Olivier Giroud is happy Chelsea will face Liverpool in the Carabao Cup after their Premier League goalless draw vs West Ham. "They will provide a real test of how good we are,” Giroud...