2012-13 preview - Spurs Ladies
Spurs Ladies are looking to build on the success of last season as they kick-off their FA Women's Premier League South campaign at Brighton on Sunday.
Promoted from the South-East Division in 2010-11, the ladies performed admirably back in the FAWPL South in 2011-12, building on an excellent start to finish a healthy mid-table.
The team was re-energised by a superb run in the London FA Women's Senior Cup, where they toppled higher-level Millwall and Charlton before hammering MSA Sports 4-0 in the final to lift the trophy for the first time.
Now they are ready to kick on again - with progress the key word from manager, Karen Hills.
"After a successful year for us last season my focus this season is to continue from where we left off, to work hard on the training ground and to be more flexible in the way we play," said Karen.
"If we finish in the top half on the table again, which I think is achievable and go further than last year in the Women's FA Cup, then that will be a good season for us.
"They key thing is that we want to build on last season and continue to progress all the time."
However, Karen finds herself without three of last season's key players for the trip to the Withdean Stadium on Sunday as Bianca Baptiste, Miranda Hall and last season's top-scorer Wendy Martin are all injured.
After a busy pre-season, the ladies' final preparation for Brighton was a tough friendly against Super League team and FA Cup runners-up Chelsea at Harlow Town on Sunday.
Karen was pleased despite a 7-1 loss with the Spurs goal from Sam Pittuck's penalty, earned when Siobhan Wilson was upended.
"It was always going to be tough to play a Super League team but the girls never gave up and worked hard throughout," reported Karen.
"More importantly, it was about them all getting match fitness and coming through with no more injury worries.
"Everyone knows Chelsea are a good side and I hope our girls learned from the game. There was individual errors on the pitch which we can look at, but overall I was happy how we conducted ourselves against one of the best teams around."