Crawley Wasps gave a superb display as they limited the mighty Arsenal to a 4-0 victory in the Women’s FA Cup fourth round.
A packed crowd enjoyed a brilliant atmosphere as 1,500 watched the 14 times FA Cup champions take on the top local women’s and girls’ club.
A temporary stand was specially built for the game, mobile toilets and extra refreshments stalls brought in for the tie which was a sell-out.
Among the VIPs watching in the stands were Crawley Town head coach Gabriele Cioffi and operations director Kelly Derham.
The Reds boss wished the Wasps players good luck before kick-off and presented the club’s under-18s team with their league trophy at half-time.
Paul Walker’s side worked hard and never looked overawed in this David v Goliath clash between teams separated by four divisions.
Arsenal, who are currently second in the Women’s Super League, earned their place in the fifth round thanks to a hat-trick by 16-year-old Ruby Grant plus a goal by Kim Little.
Megan Stow had an early shot blocked for Wasps during a quiet opening 15 minutes.
Scotland international Little gave the visitors the lead in the 17th minute, showing some good pace before finishing from inside the area.
Little had already been denied with an earlier chance by Wasps’ ‘keeper Frankie Gibbs who gathered the ball well.
Jenny Drury blasted a shot wide for following a corner-kick as Wasps pressed at the other end.
Grant scored the second goal for Arsenal two minutes before half-time with a well-taken shot from the edge of the area.
Gibbs pulled out a cracking save to turn a shot from Danish international Katrine Veje around the post.
Grant made it 3-0 on 75 minutes, firing past Gibbs after sprinting through the area.
Wasps had their best chance of the game in the 81st minute when Sian Heather crossed to Faye Rabson whose shot was saved by the feet of ‘keeper Sari van Veenendaal before Stow’s follow-up shot flew narrowly wide of the post.
Grant completed her hat-trick by adding the fourth goal from short-range with five minutes to go.
Crawley Wasps: Gibbs, Palmer, Stephenson, James, Young, Drury (Russell 66), Stow, Heather (Davies 90), Rabson, Fleischman (Webber 60), Cole (capt)
Unused subs: Graves, Woollard, Ward, Measures
Arsenal: van Veenendaal, Dawbarn, Quinn, Arnth, McCabe (Albuquerque 62), van de Donk (Hazard 62), Little (Williamson 46), Grant, Filis, Kuyken, Veje
Unused subs: Peyraud-Magnin, Mead
Referee: Simon Finnigan
Man of the Match: Megan Stow