Lauren James celebrates one of her two goals against Brighton in the Women's FA Cup

Brighton & Hove Albion 0 United Women 2

A Lauren James brace and a brilliant penalty save by Siobhan Chamberlain gave Manchester United Women an excellent 2-0 win away against top-flight side Brighton & Hove Albion in the SSE Women’s FA Cup.

James, a half-time substitute, didn’t take long to make her presence felt, giving United the lead on 51 minutes. Jess Sigsworth did brilliantly on the right, driving into the area and delaying her pass just long enough for James to come onto and sweep home a first-time shot.

The teams went in level at the break after a cagey opening 45 minutes, though; Ella Toone, who looked dangerous every time she got the ball, had the only shot on target. Our no.7 did well to connect with Kirsty’s Hanson’s cross from the left, directing her effort towards goal on the stretch, but Brighton’s Fliss Gibbons was in the right place at the right time to head away.
Kirsty Hanson surges forward on the wing against Brighton & Hove Albion
Kirsty Hanson surges forward in search of a crossing opportunity against Brighton.
The game opened up in the second half, with James’ goal coming just six minutes in and chances for both sides throughout. United looked the most likely to score again and extend the lead; Alex Greenwood, Toone and Sigsworth all had opportunities.
Brighton had a golden chance to equalise with 12 minutes remaining, though. Amy Turner’s challenge on Kayleigh Green in the area was adjudged to be a foul by referee Aji Ajibola, who pointed to the spot. Danni Buet stepped up for the home side but Chamberlain - called into action just once before this - made an excellent save from the Brighton captain’s firmly struck penalty, diving to her right and pushing it to safety.
 
The home side continued to push for an equaliser but United stood firm and made sure of the result when James scored her second goal in added time. The 17-year-old used her strength to hold off Brighton defenders, turned well and strode into the area before unleashing a low and hard strike past the Seagulls' keeper Sophie Harris.
Alex Greenwood
Reds captain Alex Greenwood led her side to a historic first win in the Women's FA Cup.
The reward for this excellent result - another victory for Casey Stoney’s side against top-tier opposition - is a place in the SSE Women's FA Cup fifth-round draw, which will be broadcast live on the BBC News channel during Sportsday from 18:30 GMT on Monday, 4 February.

MATCH DETAILS

United Women: Chamberlain, Harris, A. Turner, M. Turner, Greenwood (c); Zelem, Green, Toone (Arnot 90); Hanson (Galton 61), Sigsworth, Devlin (James 45).

Subs not used: Ramsey, Smith, Roberts, Palmer

Scorer: James 51, 90+2.
Lauren James walks off the field at full-time after scoring twice against Brighton
Job done - Lauren James walks off the field at full-time after her match-winning double.
NEXT HOME MATCH

United Women’s next home match, after facing Arsenal away in the Continental Tyres League Cup at Meadow Park on Thursday night, will be against Aston Villa next Sunday, 10 February. Kick-off at Leigh Sports Village will be 12:00 GMT and tickets for the Women's Championship fixture will be on sale via www.manutd.com/womenstickets.

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