Title challenge is ‘realistic’ for Ipswich Town Ladies after winning run
- Credit: Archant
Ipswich Town Ladies boss Ralph Pruden sees no reason why his side can’t mount a title challenge following a stunning run of seven-straight victories.
Win number seven saw Pruden’s side progress to the second round of the FA Cup thanks to a 4-2 victory over Leyton Orient at the weekend, with the Blues’ unbeaten run stretching back to the start of October.
Their form sees them sit fourth in the FA Women’s Premier League South East Division One table, five points behind leaders AFC Wimbledon and with a game in hand on all those above them.
And Pruden believes they are capable of challenging for the title and progressing in the FA Cup, where they now face Stevenage.
“Consistency is something we spoke about right at the start of the season and it’s great to have found that,” Pruden said.
“We got a really good win against Wimbledon at the start of the season and that gave us great belief we can challenge and from there we have kept getting results and building that belief. The atmosphere in the squad is great but there’s also a really good focus, which is important.
“There isn’t an awful lot between any of the teams in the league and we are all capable of beating everyone else, so if you have an off day there is a big chance of losing or dropping points.
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“Yes, I think it’s realistic for us to think we can win it and we know we have to keep going and maintain our consistency. When we play the teams around us we need to be picking up wins there.”
The FA Cup draw with Stevenage sees the Blues take on a side sitting three places below them in the league table but, despite having a good record against the Hertfordshire side, Pruden is expecting a tough game when they meet at the start of December.
“We’ve played them three times in the last two seasons and have won every game, but they are a team who are fast improving,” he said.
“They are a very different side to the one we have played before, when they were new in the Premier League, but they beat Wimbledon recently and it shows they have real quality.
“We should be confident though and if we are at our best then I think we will win.”
Next up is a visit to Hadleigh United in the Suffolk FA’s Women’s Cup on Sunday.