Ipswich Town Ladies warned against FA Cup shock
Ipswich Town Ladies manager Ollie Drake has warned his side against suffering an FA Cup upset ahead of their first round tie against AFC Wimbledon Ladies on Sunday.
Town were given a bye in the first two qualifying rounds but trounced Oxford City 7-0 away in the third round qualifying on November 11, setting up Sunday’s clash at Ipswich Wanderers SEH Sports Ground on Humber Doucy Lane (1pm ko).
However, AFC Wimbledon Ladies – mid-table in the London & South East Counties Women’s Premier Division, a league below Ipswich – will be aiming to spring a surprise after squeezing past Aldershot Ladies 1-0 in the last round.
But Drake will be ensuring his players do not enter the FA Cup fixture with any sense of misplaced complacency.
“They will come to us knowing they can take a scalp of a club in a higher league,” said Drake.
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“But I’m going to make sure we’re not going to get done by a little club.
“I expect my side to do their best and compete with a ‘bring it on’ attitude.”
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“I don’t tend to look at what the other teams are doing. I don’t sit through their tactics or see how many goals they’ve conceded or scored.
“I just put out my strongest team and play to our strengths.
“Hopefully we’ll be at the top of the game and I am expecting us to progress into the next round.”
Ipswich finished third in the South East Combination League last season and are aiming for promotion to the Women’s Premier League Southern Division.
They are currently third in the league, having won six of their opening 10 matches, including a 7-0 drubbing of Crystal Palace and a 3-0 win over rivals Norwich City, leaving Drake confident of embarking on a strong FA Cup run this term.
“We have recorded some big victories in this season and for some reason the FA Cup brings out the best in us and we turn it on,” added Drake.
“It’s great for the team to reach the first round proper of the FA Cup.
“It was a very comprehensive win in the last round and everyone is really confident we can go on quite a good cup run this season.
“The team spirit has been fantastic. I think this cup run has boosted the confidence of the players.
“But we haven’t had a game for two weeks, although some have played for Suffolk in that time, and I’m sure we’ll battle hard for the whole game.”