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Arsenal Ladies Williamson has backed returning Kim Little to guide them to cup glory

PUBLISHED: 12:00 22 February 2018

Arsenal's Jodie Taylor (left) and Leah Williamson during an England training session (pic Joe Giddens/PA)

Arsenal's Jodie Taylor (left) and Leah Williamson during an England training session (pic Joe Giddens/PA)

PA Wire/PA Images

Leah Williamson has backed the returning Kim Little to inspire Arsenal Ladies to SSE Women’s FA Cup glory this season.

Scottish star Little, who was the first ever PFA Women’s Player of the Year in 2013, has been out for 12 months with a serious knee injury, forcing her to miss Euro 2017.

But she made her return in the FA Cup fifth round win against Millwall on Sunday and will provide Arsenal with a major boost in the final third of the campaign.

The Gunners have drawn third-tier Charlton Athletic at home in the quarter-finals, avoiding defending champions Manchester City and fellow big guns Chelsea.

And Williamson, who helped conduct the draw alongside team-mate Alex Scott live on BBC Radio 1Xtra, is excited to see Little back as Arsenal bid for a 15th FA Cup.

“She is a fantastic addition for us. She has been watching us and was upset to see us not have a good start to the season,” the 20-year-old said.

“It is amazing to see Kim back, she is a world class player and to have her back on the pitch is fantastic for us.

“She has been very professional in her rehab, I have never seen anyone be so positive despite everything she has gone through so for her to be back fit is great.

“Hopefully she can add something.”

It has been a season of two halves for Arsenal, with a poor start to the season costing manager Pedro Martinez, who guided them to Cup success in 2016, his job.

Since then they have recovered impressively and currently sit third in the Women’s Super League table, while they are already through to the FA WSL Continental Tyres Cup final.

New manager Joe Montemurro has uncluttered their minds and simplified the aims, with the ‘Arsenal’ way firmly back in practice in North London.

“Joe has been very clear with what he wants to do and the way he wants to play.

“It is very much the Arsenal way so a lot of us home grown players are now playing the football we have grown up with,” said midfielder Williamson.

“Everyone is moving in the same direction and sometimes it just takes a fresh pair of eyes to make a difference and help us.

“The draw against Charlton is really good, all we wanted was a home draw and to avoid the top teams and that is what we have got.

“Charlton are not in the WSL so for them to get this far is amazing for them. It will be an unknown going into it.

“We try and prepare professionally every game so we will be lacking a bit of knowledge but I don’t think it will affect us too much.”

Tickets are now on sale for the SSE Women’s FA Cup Final on Saturday 5th May at Wembley Stadium connected by EE. For more information about tickets and SSE’s involvement in women’s football visit www.sponsorship.sse.com

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