Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Charlton Win FA Women's Cup

Charlton Athletic won the 2005 FA Women's Cup on Monday after beating Everton 1-0 in the final at Upton Park. It was Charlton's third successive appearance in the Final of this knockout competition, the south London team having been beaten in both the 2003 and 2004 finals. The FA Women's Cup evolved out of the old Women's Football Association Mitre Challenge Trophy, which was first contested in the 1970-71 season. At that time the competition involved teams from Scotland as well as England and Wales. In the 1993-94 season the Football Association's Competition Department took over the administration of the competition and it was renamed the F.A. Women's Challenge Cup. Interest in the Cup, as well as women's football more generally, has increased dramatically since then. In 2000 the AXA-sponsored F.A. Women's Cup was screened live by Sky television and covered on BBC national radio. As well as running the FA Women's Cup, the Football Association also operates the Nationwide Women's Premier League, the Nationwide Women's Premier League Cup, and the FA Women's Shield. The latter is the traditional curtain-opener for the new season and pit the winners of the FA Women's Cup with the winners of the Nationwide Women's Premier League.