‘It doesn’t matter who we get’, says Willie Kirk after Leicester’s trouncing of Birmingham in Women’s FA Cup

4 months ago 31

WILLIE KIRK  insists Leicester are up for a quarter-final battle with any of the FA Cup’s big guns after trouncing Birmingham 6-2 on Saturday.

Shannon O’Brien netted twice as the Foxes filled their boots in the contest’s fifth round.

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Five different players netted for Leicester in their FA Cup fifth-round defeat of Birmingham City[/caption]
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Saori Takarada, Yuka Momiki, and Shannon O’Brien impressed for the Foxes[/caption]
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Willie Kirk hopes Leicester will continue having a mix of Foxes names on the scoresheet in games[/caption]

Five different players were on the scoresheet for Leicester who were ruthless after going 1-0 behind.

Japanese pair Saori Takarada and Yuka Momiki shone for Kirk’s side with Takarada among the hosts’ scorers at Pirelli Stadium.

When asked if this was the highest-ever scoring win for Leicester in the Cup’s fifth round, Kirk said: “We don’t like to look too far back in terms of records.

“We want to keep focus on creating our own history. 

“And that’s been a big thing this year – we’ve achieved a lot of firsts, and we’ll continue to try to do that. 

“We’re a young club still with a young history. The thing that pleased me most is the five different goal scorers for the six goals.

“That’s been a feature for us this season.  I think our highest goal scorer might have only five (goals), but we’ve had double figures in terms of the different players who’ve scored. 

“It’s important this continues and that we’re unpredictable in terms of where goals come from. 

“You would hate it if someone bagged four goals and you’re always relying on that single (number) nine.”

Arsenal, Manchester City, holders Chelsea and last year’s beaten finalists Man United, are among the WSL giants targeting a place in the contest’s last eight.

The Gunners and City will go head-to-head on Sunday lunchtime with Chelsea facing Crystal Palace and United up against Southampton.

And Kirk has no qualms about Leicester facing a top tier rival including those fighting it out for the league crown. 

The Foxes chief added: “At this stage of the competition you would take anybody (on).

“I look at the last time I went to an FA Cup final (when I was managing Everton) and we got Chelsea in the quarter-finals.

“I’ll make sure I say to the players that it doesn’t matter who we get. If those big teams are going to lose a game, it’s normally a quarter or a semi-final.”

The hosts found themselves behind after two minutes Birmingham captain Ellie Mason’s free-kick bouncing in off Missy Goodwin’s head for an own-goal. 

And after Momiki and Takorada tested Birmingham stopper Lucy Thomas, Janice Cayman levelled from close range in the 19th minute.

The hosts took a 2-1 lead four minutes later through O’Brien’s top corner finish before Blues’ Libby Smith levelled with a stylish chip. 

O’Brien’s slotted close-range strike restored the lead close to half-time. 

Leicester took things up a notch in the second half bagging three more goals. 

Takorada headed them 4-2 in front before subs Deanne Rose and Aileen Whelan got in on scoring to wrap up the win. 

Following their exit Birmingham’s focus will be back on their fight to return to the top tier with five Championship teams in promotion contention. 

The team are sat fifth in the second tier but just four points off leaders Charlton with a game in hand.

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Birmingham City face promotion rivals Southampton next in the Women’s Championship[/caption]

Brum boss Darren Carter said: “I love this competition (the FA Cup) and I’m gutted (we’re out but) everyone knows our aim this year.

“That’s to go and challenge and get this team back to the WSL.

“We’ve got eight games to go now, and everyone is going to be huge. The players will be hungry, and they’ll be focused and ready.”

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