SWINDON Town Ladies boss Glyn Evans is confident his side can overcome the absence of leading scorer Abby Picton and make history in the FA Cup third round.
The in-form club take on Gillingham at Fairford’s Cinder Lane ground tomorrow after Picton scored all three goals in the 3-2 second round win over Exeter, which earned them a place in round three for only the second time in their history.
But the striker was sent off late on and will be forced to watch from the sidelines, and despite Picton scoring 12 times in three FA Cup games this season, Evans is confident whoever he selects to replace her will rise to the occasion and help the club progress to round four for the first time.
“We are feeling confident, and we have trained hard and are seven games unbeaten so we are going into the game in good form,” he said.
“The only downside is that we are missing our main striker Abby Picton after she got sent off in the last round, and she will be a huge miss. But we have players who can step up.
“She has scored 12 goals in three games and she also has pace to die for and people can’t deal with it, but whoever comes in will be good enough because we have good strength in depth this year.”
The last time Town reached round three they ended up suffering a heavy defeat to Doncaster, but Evans is convinced his side will put in a better display this time around.
“It is only the second time we have got there, and last time we lost to Doncaster and we were pretty much stuffed to be honest,” he said.
“We have a better calibre of player in now, and I am confident we can do it.
“They are in the division above us, but we are in such a good run of form I don’t think that will matter too much. The atmosphere around the club is great, and that is really going to help us.
“They are a good side, we know that, and we have seen a few videos of them and have identified a few of their players who are useful. I’m not worried about that, because if the girls win their own battles we can come out on top.”
Sunday’s game at Fairford kicks off at 1pm, with entry £3 for adults and under 16s free.
Swindon Town Ladies squad: Robyn Levett, Kelly Nightingale, Lisa Coe, Amy Baker, Alison Witts, Kim Reeves, Catherine Reid, Michelle Rich, Kirsty Shell, Chyna Collings, Ellie Maynard, Chantelle Lovell, Cara Stacey, Laura Morgan, Laura Stallard, Karyn Coombs, Natalie Evans, Sarah Wood.