A very special day at the SSE Women’s FA Cup Final, Wembley

Chelsea Ladies Fa Cup

Being a parent is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world, but it can also be one of the toughest.

One of the things that can get you through the tough days is remembering the proud moments. From their first smile to their first steps, a certificate of achievement to a medal, it is proof that the hard work and perseverance is worth it.

Having six children, I do have quite a few very proud moments to look back on, including Abbey collecting her Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award at St James’ Palace, seeing Kian on the pitch at Wembley as a player escort, Callan laying the poppy wreath in Poole Park as an arm cadet and Isaac taking the honour of flag bearer at his St Georges Day Parade.

This weekend it was Eliza’s turn to join the ‘especially proud moments club’ as she was chosen to be a player escort at the SSE Women’s FA Cup Final.

Eliza started playing football last year, after attending an SSE Wildcats session and we haven’t looked back since. Her confidence and ball skills have really improved and now, instead of just following the main Chelsea FC team, we have started following the Chelsea Ladies and Youth teams with much more interest too.

#SSEWildcats Girls Football Club

Of course, we were over the moon when we watched the Chelsea Ladies beat last year’s winners Man City in the semi-finals and crossed our fingers that Eliza would walk out with her Chelsea heroes.

Women's FA Cup Fan Zone

We got to Wembley nice and early and took advantage of the Women’s FA Cup fan zone, set up outside Wembley arena. The kids got to make their own banners, enjoy some fun photobooth action, get to try a penalty shoot out and watch live music and football trickery.

Photobooth pics

It was soon time to drop Eliza off at the meeting point and to say she was nervous was an understatement, but she was soon taken under the wing of two older girls, Olivia and Skye, buoyed by the news she would be walking out with Chelsea.

Eliza Player Escort

The next time we would see Eliza would be on the pitch at Wembley!! She on the other hand, made new friends, greeted the players off the coach and got to see not one, but four Wembley changing rooms!!

Meanwhile, we got to explore Wembley before the crowds arrived.

Wembley Stadium

At 3.30pm we were invited to join SSE in the Bobby Moore suite and were treated to a mid-afternoon snack and the chance to see the Women’s FA Cup Trophy in all its glory. Hubby was under strict instructions NOT to touch it!!

Women's FA Cup Trophy

We entered the stadium itself about an hour before the match, where we were entertained by a live DJ, the club mascots and got to see the teams out for their pre-match warm up.

Wembley Stadium Pano

We also got to see Eliza in her match kit practicing and watching the players.

Eliza SSE

It was obvious from the smiles and waves that she was no longer nervous and just excited.

Flags

The children headed back into the tunnel to prepare for their starring role, whilst hundreds of children from teams from all around the country marched around the stadium.

Chelsea Ladies Line Up 3

Then it was time for the teams and the escorts to head onto the pitch in front of a record crowd of 45,423 people!!

Chelsea Ladies

Chelsea Ladies Fa Cup

Eliza was partnered with midfielder Millie Bright and stood proudly in front of her whilst the teams met the dignitaries and sang the national anthem.

Chelsea Ladies
The Chelsea line up before the Arsenal v Chelsea Women’s FA Cup Final football match, Wembley Stadium, London, UK. On the 5th May 2018
Photo: Dave Shopland for FA

She was then led off the pitch and it was time for the match to begin.

Wembley Women's FA Cup

Although Isaac and Eliza were there when Kian was a player escort he was only three, and she a baby, so this was only their second experience of a football match and Sebastian’s first and they all loved it.

Eliza Wembley

The atmosphere was very different from a men’s game. There were no rude songs and no effing and jeffing the referee’s or players, but the atmosphere was electric all the same.

Women's FA Cup

Although us adults could enjoy a tipple if we wanted to, it was all very child friendly, with sweets, popcorn and ice cream on offer throughout the match and during half time.

Wembley Ice Cream

The quality of the match was also brilliant and we were all super impressed by the skills on display from both teams.

Goal Chelsea

Just 3 minutes into the second half Erin Bachman scored her first of two goals, with her second coming just 12 minutes later.

Chelsea LFC

There were a few nerves when Miedema scored for Arsenal, but much to our delight, Fran Kirby put Chelsea’s third goal of the evening in the net to win victory.

SSE FA CUP

I have to say a big thank you to SSE for hosting us for the day. Not only did Eliza get to be a player escort, but we had some amazing seats and the kids high-fived all the players as they headed up the steps to collect their trophy.

ChelseaLFC

The Women’s FA Cup Final was truly a great family day out and a true celebration of women’s football and we cannot see what next year brings.

Chelsea LFC Winners

Did you tune in live on BBC1 to see the match or go to Wembley to watch it live?

Keep using the hashtag #TogetherWeCan to inspire a generation and grow the profile of the women’s game!

Disclaimer: We were guests of SSE to watch the SSE Women’s FA Cup final, all thoughts and opinions are our own

21 thoughts on “A very special day at the SSE Women’s FA Cup Final, Wembley

  1. Stephanie says:

    What a wonderful experience for her and how proud you must have been as her Mummy watching on. Amazing!

  2. Wow what an amazing thing to experience. No. Wonder she was full of smiles. I bet that’s a day she’ll never forget!

  3. WOW! This sounds like the most amazing day – what a brilliant day for Eliza!!! So cool, and she looks so chuffed. I bet it was really interesting seeing all parts of Wembley. Yay for Women’s Football!

  4. Alice Megan says:

    It’s fantastic to see this!
    As a girl who adores football I think it’s so important to see and especially the rise of womens football – it sounded like a fab game too

  5. Oh what an amazing experience for her, something she’ll remember for the longest time I’m sure!

  6. Rachel says:

    Looks and sounds like an amazing day! What a unique and memorable experience! Women’s football is so up and coming, it’s great to see.

  7. Laura Dove says:

    Ahh what an amazing day! My son is DESPERATE to go to Wembley, I’ve promised him we will go next year! Love womens football too, my girls are football mad!

  8. What a super experience for Eliza and the whole family! Moments like this make everything worth while. You must be so proud of her. We all love football.

  9. Oh wow!!! You must have felt so so so proud! As a mum of 4, 3 of which are girls, I understand how huge this moment must have been for you. Women’s football is better than ever, and your little girl made such a wonderful escort! x

  10. I have never attended a live football match before. I bet it was an amazing experience. Your little girl looks very happy.

  11. Anosa says:

    Aww this is so cute, your Eliza is a doll! I didnt get a chance to catch the match,but ill try and catch the highlights on iplayer.

  12. Kate says:

    That sounds amazing, and she looks so proud of herself! I love how much more involved girls are becoming in soccer; my 5-year old plays on a team with more girls than boys (and honestly, one of the girls is the best player on the team by a mile!) I live in Orlando and we have an amazing women’s soccer team, I love taking my kids to watch them play.

  13. It was such a good game, I loved the atmosphere so much and Indie was cheering for Chelsea all the way (despite the flag she had). It looks like the Eliza had the best day

  14. Louise says:

    Aww, she’s so cute! I bet she was as proud as punch to be able to do this. And it goes without saying that mummy would be too 🙂

    Louise x

  15. Lynne Harper says:

    Chelsea is a wonderful team who really invest in their fans. This much have been an amazing experience for you all x

  16. Jon says:

    We watched this on TV at the weekend – couldn’t believe the size of the crowd.

  17. nicol says:

    awww how adorable is she! love how shes smiling proudly in those photos. such an honour

  18. Talya says:

    Ahhhh we really wanted to go to this but had other plans – it looks like it was an amazing and inspiring day out!

  19. Fritha Quinn says:

    wow what an amazing moment getting to walk on the pitch with the team! We were going to be at the match too but couldn’t make it in the end! x

  20. That is amazing that you were able to attend the women’s football match and that she was even able to be part of the football match which is a very special moment indeed. Well done to Eliza!

  21. Wow that must have been exciting for you guys as parents and for your daughter and it’s always nice to see girls take an interest in sport and football x

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