Man City women win cup final – as manager's wife goes into labour

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Manchester City celebrate Lucy Bronze's winner

Manchester City Women defeated Birmingham City in extra-time to win the Continental Cup final – with boss Nick Cushing remaining with the team despite his wife going into labour.

After the win he admitted he was not aware if his third child had arrived.

England’s Lucy Bronze sealed victory with a far-post header from a corner after a goalless first 90 minutes.

That was enough to win Man City’s third major trophy, just seven days after clinching their first league title.

A lively crowd of 4,214 were at Man City’s Academy Stadium home – which was named as the “neutral venue” for the final in July and Birmingham boss David Parker described it as “the most un-neutral final you’ll see in football” before the game.

Man City – who also won the Continental Cup in 2014 – controlled the first half but Birmingham’s German keeper Ann-Katrin Berger did well to tip away Toni Duggan’s cross-goal effort and hold Nikita Parris’ low shot.

Birmingham, beaten finalists in 2011 and 2012, were well-organised with five at the back but rarely threatened the league champions’ goal, although Freda Ayisi and Melissa Lawley both shot wide after the break.

In extra-time, Duggan fired over before Bronze’s angled header from a corner opened the scoring and Tessel Middag almost added a second, but struck the post.

Birmingham City Ladies goalkeeper Ann-Katrin Berger told BBC WM:

“I feel sad because we put in a great performance. The girls came in and tried to put in their best, so it’s a bad end to the day.

“I’m really proud of the girls as we had 90 minutes where we matched them and forced the domestic league champions to go to extra time to beat us.

“We were the underdogs and we were unlucky, but we put in a great team performance.”

Manchester City Women: Hourihan, Bronze, Houghton (c), Beattie, Stokes, Walsh, Scott, Christiansen, Parris (Asllani 65), Duggan (Corboz 105), Ross (Middag 84).

Substitutes not used: Bardsley.

Goals: Bronze (105)

Birmingham City Ladies: Berger, Sargeant, Carter, Harrop, Ayisi (Linden 105), Linnett (Wellings 75), Hegerberg (Peplow 90), Ewers, Lawley, Westwood (c), Mannion.

Substitutes not used: Baggaley, Windell, Stringer, Schroder.

Attendance: 4,214

Referee: Rebecca Welch

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