Williams: We'll be back next year

Sunday 14 May 2023 18:30

Rachel Williams insists Manchester United will "definitely be back next year" at Wembley, after losing the club's first-ever Women's FA Cup final to Chelsea.

The victors are one of Williams' former outfits and she was left to lament the Reds' missed opportunities to go in front against a team that has great experience in seeing out wins to lift silverware.

This was Chelsea's ninth triumph in 10 clashes between the clubs and their second in a row by the narrowest 1-0 margin, both coming courtesy of a Sam Kerr strike.

Williams: It hurts Video

Williams: It hurts

Rachel Williams says United were 'so close' to getting something from the Women's FA Cup final...

When asked by club media reporter Ben Ibson if there was a lesson to be learned in our Wembley defeat, Williams replied: “Yeah, put the ball in the back of the net before they do!

“It hurts today, we were so close. It was that one per cent [difference] again. It's come from a set piece, they’ve taken a throw-in, we've missed it, they've got in.

“We'll learn from it, we’ll bounce back. We’ve got to switch our mindset now back to the league and just hope that we've done enough in it.

“You never know what's going to happen [in the FA Cup], but we'll be back next year.”
Williams also regretted the fact that United were not awarded a first-half spot-kick when her team-mate Nikita Parris was grounded in the area, with the referee ruling that the initial challenge occurred just outside the box.

However, the 35-year-old was philosophical in the end, commenting: “You win some, you lose some. And it wasn't our day to get that penalty today.

“But the girls have been absolutely brilliant today. We couldn't ask for any more from anyone. The girls, the staff, absolutely everyone, and the fans here today.

“We’re absolutely gutted we couldn't bring the trophy home. But like I said, we'll definitely be back next year.”

Chelsea 1 United 0: Talking points from Wembley


The key points from the Vitality Women's FA Cup final, as the Reds fall narrowly short.

One of the positives to take from United Women's maiden voyage down Wembley Way was the size of the crowd, as 77,390 fans set a new world record for an attendance at a women's domestic match.

“The last time I was in an FA Cup final, that was at Wembley, with only 30,000,” reflected Williams. “So every year the game's growing. Credit to absolutely everyone involved.

“Just for the day in itself, without having the game to play. We look around and it’s amazing to see. And hopefully it's going to be like this for a long time now.”

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