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Cows sailing into history with win

PUBLISHED: 16:19 30 October 2008 | UPDATED: 13:44 05 October 2010

By JONATHAN CLEGG TOWER HAMLETS Women made history this week by reaching the first round proper of the FA Women s Cup and extending their record-breaking run in the competition. The Cows, who had already produced their best ever performance by advancing

By JONATHAN CLEGG

TOWER HAMLETS Women made history this week by reaching the first round proper of the FA Women's Cup and extending their record-breaking run in the competition.

The Cows, who had already produced their best ever performance by advancing to the third qualifying round, recorded a 2-1 victory over Panthers LFC at Victoria Park on Sunday to take their place in the cup's main draw.

Tower Hamlets were handed a tough trip to Lewes in Monday's draw at Soho Square, but caretaker manager Katy Arnold believes her side can spring a surprise by continuing their dramatic run in the competition.

The Cows will be underdogs when they travel to Sussex for the match at Lewes's Dripping Pan stadium next weekend, but Arnold is optimistic that the team's current form will carry them through.

She said: "To get into the FA Cup proper is a massive achievement and I'm really proud of all the girls. We played against Lewes a couple of years ago but they're in a higher division than us now and they're a really good side.

"But it's the FA Cup proper and there are going to be quality teams at that level. We played West Ham in a pre-season friendly and we didn't do too badly against them, so I think we can hold our own but we'll have to play at the very top of our game or it could become a bit humiliating.

"I'm sure Lewes will view us as the underdogs, but if they underestimate us, we could surprise them."

Lewes would be foolish to overlook Arnold's side after Panthers were made to pay for underestimating the Cows last weekend.

Sabrina Samuel scored twice for Tower Hamlets in a dominant first-half display and despite Eloise Young pulling a goal back for Panthers 15 minutes from time, the East End side hung on to eliminate their London rivals.

"The last 20 minutes were a bit hairy, but halfway through the second half we almost went 3-0 up, so I think the scoreline made it look closer than it actually was," Arnold said.

"We heard a rumour when they arrived that they had written us off and that really inspired us. There's nothing more insulting than hearing a team have written you off before you have stepped on the pitch.

"But we spurned a chance to kill off the game and that's something we can't afford to against Lewes."

Yet Tower Hamlets will have to put thoughts of a cup upset on hold for a week as they return to league action on Sunday against a Brentford side they thrashed 5-0 in the FA Cup's second qualifying round.

The Cows are yet to win a league game this season following a series of postponements due to their progress in the cup and Arnold admits that it is vital the team take their cup form into the league campaign.

She said: "We've shown our potential now and we're starting to play the football that we've always threatened to. I'm just hoping we can consolidate that in the league because I'm sure Brentford will be looking for a bit of revenge.

"If the girls can play with the same level of commitment and desire as well as a bit of composure on the ball, we can really achieve something this season.

"When we're at the top of our game, we can beat every team in this league, but we need to get a couple more wins under out belts. If we can do that, we really will have put Tower Hamlets on the map.

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