Women's Team

Coombs: We must show Ipswich respect

GAME FACE: Laura Coombs keeps her eye on the play
Laura Coombs insists Manchester City's 'favourites’ tag won’t affect the players ahead of their FA Cup Fifth Round clash with Ipswich Town Women.

The 2.00pm clash at the Academy Stadium on Sunday is billed as the classic FA Cup tie, with the lowest ranked side left in the competition pitting their wits against the holders and Women’s Super League leaders.

But the visitors currently sit top of the FA Women’s Premier League Division One South East in the Fourth Tier of the Footballing Pyramid, losing just once in the process, and Coombs is eager to give the Tractor Girls the respect they deserve.

“It’s really important we do that (show respect), because we don’t want to make any mistakes or slip ups.

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“Yes, we’ll be strong favourites going into the game but in these one-off games, you never know what could happen.”

“It’s a strange feeling definitely, you just have to make sure you go in and focus like a league game and prepare exactly the same.”

Irrespective of the round, the draw, or the club’s previous success, the FA Cup holds a special place in the hearts of most football fans.

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And, according to Coombs, it’s no different for the players when it comes to the oldest national competition in world football.

“I think (for) every English player, it’s the most important cup competition,” Coombs admits.

“It’s always amazing to say you’ve played in the FA Cup and progressed in the FA Cup so I think it’s really important for us to get as far as we can go.”

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One of Coombs’ teammates who is equally up for the cup is our flying full-back, Demi Stokes.

The defender admitted she always looks forward to facing different challenges that unfamiliar opponents can pose.

“Everyone wants to play in it no matter how many times you’ve won it or played in it,” Stokes said of the FA Cup.

“You crave it every time and it’s important to try and get to Wembley.

“It’s a really exciting cup because anyone can get there and that’s the beauty of it. You can play anyone so it’s always fun.”

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