Blues beaten by Sheffield in last four clash
Pompey Ladies were denied a place in the Premier League Cup final after losing 2-0 to Sheffield.
Two second half goals ensured that their 20-match unbeaten run finally came to an end.
The visitors broke the deadlock when Jodie Michalska headed home from close range just before the hour mark.
And they thought they had doubled their advantage, only for the referee to bizarrely rule it out just as Pompey were preparing to kick-off.
But Sheffield did grab a second in the closing stages, with Emma Johnson firing a shot into the bottom corner.
Blues boss Perry Northeast said: “I’ve got to be brutally honest and admit that Sheffield just about edged the contest, although I’m not sure we deserved to lose by a two-goal margin.
“It was a very tight encounter – as you would expect in a semi-final – but they managed to step up a bit after the break.
“We weren’t poor, but didn’t reach the high standards that we’ve shown throughout this season and our opponents capitalised on that.
“Sarah Kempson had scored a hat-trick for us the previous week, but woke up with a bug on the morning of the game, so we got off to the worst possible start.
“I’m not saying that was the reason why we lost the game, although it meant that we were immediately facing an uphill battle.
“Losing is hard to take when you’re so close to the final and everyone was extremely disappointed in the dressing room afterwards.
“Sheffield are doing well in the Premier League Northern Division and we hope to play them again at the end of the season in the play-off to decide who gets promoted into the Super League.
“We’ve got a team from that level next – we host Millwall in the fourth round of the FA Women’s Cup this Sunday.
“We want to be testing ourselves against sides of their calibre on a regular basis because it can be difficult to measure progress when you’re winning league games comfortably most weeks.”
Pompey: Blakely; Frampton, Rutherford, Currie (Taylor 25), Bazan (Dark 72); Bloomfield (Hillier 59), Sievwright, Clark; Quinn, Umotong, Wilson
Photo: Matt Underwood
Photo: Matt Underwood