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Women's Football News
Actonians Ladies produced one of the results of the Second Round in the Women's FA Cup when they defeated Southern Premier Division title challengers Crawley Wasps 3-1.
We talked to Actonians midfielder Meila D'Santos, scorer of the third goal on the day, and she paid tribute to the hard work put in ahead of the game which helped them on their way to victory, and looked forward to the prospect of taking on Billericay Town in the next round:
WSS: Congratulations on a great result, how does it feel to have knocked a team as good as Crawley Wasps out of the FA Cup?
MD: Thank you and it feels great! We really put in a lot of hard work to prepare for the game, especially from all the drills and practicing set pieces in training. We knew it would be the toughest game yet for us so to come away with a win is an amazing feeling.
WSS: Did you find yourself coming under pressure as the game wore on, and what was it like when you scored the third goal late on?
MD: Not particularly under pressure, I would say Crawley had some good chances and did play well however I think we controlled the game throughout the full 90 minutes, which is what led us on to get the third goal. The third goal was important as it really settled the team down.
WSS: Given where Crawley Wasps are in the league, is this as good a result as the club has ever achieved?
MD: As a player who has only joined Actonians at the start of the season, I wouldn't know if it's the best ever but I would definitely say this is the best we've played so far this season. Crawley are a really good side, so with such a big win I'm hoping that as a team we can carry on the team spirit and positivity into future games.
WSS: Do you think it helped that you had played them in the League Cup a few weeks earlier?
MD: Yes, 100%. We played Crawley very defensively the first time round which made it hard for us to attack. This time round I think we had taken some confidence from the last game into pressing higher and to try and score a couple goals.
WSS: Alessandra Barreca has now scored six goals in the last three rounds of the Cup, how big a boost to the team is it to have a top striker like her?
MD: Ale is a massive part of the team and is an unreal player! She brings so much quality and skill, of which you can see through the amount of goals she's scored. Due to her scoring so many goals, she's given other players the confidence to shoot and try score a few too.
WSS: You have landed an away tie with Billericay Town in the Third Round, from the same division. What are your feelings on that draw?
MD: Billericay are also a very good footballing side, but if we play as well as we did against Crawley then I think we have a very good chance of going through to the next round.
WSS: In the meantime, it's back to the league this week and a home game with Cambridge City. Presumably you see this one as an important match to try and move closer to the teams in the top half?
MD: Yes definitely. We need to play with as much determination and motivation in our league games as we do in the cup.
WSS: Your Cup form has been excellent but you are in mid-table in the league, has that been a little frustrating?
MD: Definitely! We know how well we can play and so to not get the same results in the league as the cup it's the most annoying feeling! But like I said, if we carry on with the same quality as we did Sunday, we've got a good chance of doing well in the league too.
WSS: Division One South East looks to be a strong one and Cup results are reflecting this. The title race is shaping up to be very close, who would you say are the favourites right now?
MD: Obviously with looking at the league, Ipswich and Billericay are the two favourites at the moment however anything can happen and this could change over time!
Our thanks to Meila!
Photo - Chris Benn
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