Cardiff City win Genero Adran Trophy with comeback derby victory over Swansea City

Cardiff City lifted their second trophy of the season, as they defeated Swansea City 5-1 to become Genero Adran Trophy winners at the SM Glass Stadium.

The only word to describe the opening ten minutes of the final is frantic. Chances fell to both sides and it really set the tone for the rest of the game. Mikayla Cook’s deflected cross struck the post for Cardiff, while Monet Legall wasn’t able to guide the ball on target from Emily Thomas’ cutback for the Swans.

By far the best opportunity fell to Cardiff and to Rhianne Oakley. After beating Steph Turner to the ball, the forward rounded Chelsea Herbert, but couldn’t put the ball into an empty net.

How that would haunt the Bluebirds, as Swansea took the lead in style. After Emma Beynon lost the ball in the midfield, Sophie Brisland-Hancocks was able to play a lofted ball into the path of Monet Legall, and first-time, Legall managed to volley home superbly from outside the box. Cue wild celebrations in the Swansea dugout.

The opening goal certainly didn’t deter Cardiff as they continued to press, searching for their first goal of the contest. Once again, Oakley was presented with a good opportunity after beating Herbert to the ball, but she could only poke wide.

The more the first half unfolded, the quieter it became. But entering the final five minutes the game was brought to life again through Chloe Chivers. Her corner cannoned back off the post, while she couldn’t aim the ball on target after Ceryn Chamberlain’s scuffed clearance. At the break, Swansea held a slender lead.

Things hadn’t gone Cardiff’s way in the first half, but nine minutes into the second half, they had an equaliser. Seren Watkins’ out swinging corner found the head of substitute Meg Bowen, and the Wales U19 international headed downwards and in to restore parity.

With one goal now under their belt, Iain Darbyshire’s side were beginning to find their groove. Siobhan Walsh’s header went straight into the clutches of Herbert, while the keeper was on hand once more to stop Mollie Kehoe.

The more the second half developed, the more Herbert was becoming a key factor. She was forced into making a fine double save, firstly to deny Oakley, and then to thwart Eliza Collie on the rebound.

But her luck would run out 18 minutes before full time. She could only tip Emma Beynon’s cross so far, and there to follow up was Mollie Kehoe, who stabbed in from close range to give Cardiff the lead for the first time in the final.

With Swansea desperately trying to force a leveller, they were left a little exposed at the back, and the Bluebirds took full advantage. Failing to clear their lines in the defence, Collie was able to rob the ball away in the box. While her shot was blocked, Oakley was up alongside her and able to stroke past Herbert to secure Cardiff’s third of the evening.

Finally feeling somewhat comfortable for the first time, the Bluebirds were playing with freedom, and they were clinically able to add a fourth two minutes from time. Oakley waltzed up the sideline and squared the ball across to Genero Adran Premier Golden Boot winner Collie, who made no mistake from a handful of yards out.

As if there wasn’t enough icing on the cake, Collie wasn’t content with just one for the game, and added her second and Cardiff’s fifth in stoppage time. Lisa Owen brought the ball out the back brilliantly and found Collie outside the six-yard box, who powered home.

Having lost three finals on the trot, Cardiff City were finally able to call themselves Genero Adran Trophy winners and are now one step away from completing a remarkable treble.

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