Lincoln Ladies v Arsenal
The FA WSL Continental Cup
7.30pm, Thursday 2 May 2013
Shelley Kerr wants Arsenal to continue their solid start to the season when they begin the defence of The FA WSL Continental Cup on Thursday night.
The Gunners impressed in reaching the semi-final of the UEFA Women’s Champions League where they lost on aggregate to Wolfsburg. But they bounced back quickly to beat Liverpool at Anfield last week to make it through to The FA Women’s Cup Final.
Last season, a late winner from Kim Little gave the Londoners victory over Birmingham in the Continental Cup Final and Kerr wants her side to draw on the experiences they have had so far this campaign when they travel to Lincoln for their opening Group One match.
The Arsenal boss said: “When you get to that level of the Champions League it’s not going to be easy, so as much as we were disappointed by the defeat we certainly have taken some positives from it.
“And we’re delighted to be in the first Cup Final of the season. What we need to do now is to try and build on the positives that we’ve had so far.”
Kelly Smith is still recovering from injury and the Lincoln tie comes too soon for England’s record goalscorer, but one player who will be available for Arsenal is the newly-crowned PFA Women’s Player of the Year, Kim Little.
And her manager was delighted to see the mercurial Scot take home the trophy.
Kerr added: “Winning an award – and the first award of its kind for women – is a special moment.
“It’s an historic moment and it will be something that not just Kim but everyone at the club will remember for a long time.”
Meanwhile, Lincoln have had a mixed start to the season. They have picked up only one point from their first two League games and their FA Women’s Cup run was ended by Bristol Academy in the Semi-Final.
But the Imps can draw confidence from the remarkable 4-3 victory over the Gunners in last year’s Continental Cup, a match that was decided by a dramatic last-minute winner from Megan Harris.