Manchester City shock now in AFC Sudbury Academy scholar Eloise King's sights with Ipswich Town in the Women's FA Cup
What may seem the impossible is certainly possible in Eloise King’s mind as she prepares to dethrone the mighty Manchester City with Ipswich Town in the FA Women’s Cup.
Despite being three leagues apart and playing Sunday’s fifth round tie at the home of England captain Steph Houghton’s 2018/19 domestic cup double winners (2pm), the AFC Sudbury Academy scholar believes the result is not a foregone conclusion.
“With the players they have got we should not be getting near them but our team is so young and fresh and I believe it is definitely possible for us to pull off an upset,” said the 17-year-old former Ormiston Sudbury Academy pupil who is also an England Under-18s player.
“I do not think we have faced anyone yet that has been really difficult, so it will be a good test for us.”
Women’s National League Division One South East leaders Ipswich have already made history in the competition, becoming the first from Tier 4 to ever feature in the last 16.
With a not fully fit attacking midfielder King watching on as an unused substitute in the last round at Huddersfield Town, they pulled off a shock 4-1 victory at the John Smith’s Stadium.
“It was buzzing and so good to watch,” said King.
“The reason I didn’t play was I had a knee injury, but I am going into Sunday pretty much fully fit.”
King scored in Ipswich Town Women’s last match, a 4-0 success at home to Kent Football United to send them back to the top of the table the weekend before last. They were due to play at Actonians on Sunday but saw the fixture postponed due to Storm Ciara.
She admits it took a while for the news of their draw at the Barclays FA Women’s Super League leaders to settle in before one clear emotion took over.
“I am really excited,” she said. “It is obviously going to be a big game and a new experience.”
Despite the club laying on two coaches to ferry friends and family up to the 5,000-seater Academy Stadium on the Ethiad Campus, she says her team-mates and herself will not be getting caught up in the special nature of the tie.
“We will be approaching it as normal and treating it as any other game, as if you start changing things it could put people under pressure,” she said.
Her classmates at AFC Sudbury may not get to see her in action this weekend but she will certainly be very much in their thoughts.
King said: “The girls love to hear about it and they are excited to see how it goes but they will probably be playing at the same time.”
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