Pompey Women out to show they remain the ‘queens’ of Hampshire in south coast derby county cup final south with Southampton Women
Jay Sadler wants Pompey Women to show they remain the 'queens' of Hampshire in their south coast derby final showdown with Southampton FC.
The Blues are bidding to be crowned Hampshire Women's Senior Cup winners for an incredible 12th time in succession in the delayed 2019-20 season Westleigh Park showpiece on Wednesday night.
Sadler admitted the level of competition across the county is improving all the time, with Saints - who play a division below third tier Pompey - showed exactly what they are capable of after pushing Super League side Birmingham all the way before going down 3-2 in an FA Women's Cup fifth round battle at the weekend.
'You look at it from a wider picture, you look at women’s football,’ said Sadler. ‘It’s fantastic to see that teams are emerging and the quality in Hampshire is increasing and the games are more competitive - that’s brilliant.
'Ultimately, we don’t want to give up our title, we have been the Hampshire queens you could say. We’ve been sitting at the top of the tree for a long, long time.
‘Teams will want to come and put themselves against us, they’ll want to knock us off and we’ve got to use that as motivation and a compliment of how far this football club has come. The history that the football club has had under previous managers and previous players, we want to do them justice.
‘Teams are getting better now, it’s good for the competition, it’s good for the area, it’s good for women’s football - but making sure Portsmouth win is our priority.'
Pompey are all too aware of the threat posed by Saints after losing 2-0 the last time the teams met in the National League Cup semi-final in February 2020 at Gosport’s Privett Park.
But Sadler is hoping a raucous crowd at Westleigh Park - the first time both sides will have played in front of supporters in 2021 - can help Pompey in their bid to retain the silverware once more.
He said: 'We’ve obviously watched their run in the FA Women’s Cup. We know they’ve caused teams in our league upsets and problems in the past. They’ve beaten Lewes in the league higher and they took Birmingham, who are a Super League full professional outfit, all the way.
‘We know we’re going to have to be at our best.
‘We’ve got our fans coming down, we want to do them proud. We want to put everything into the game and we want to end what have been turbulent seasons with something positive to shout about.’