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Everything you need to know: AFC Bournemouth v Charlton Athletic Women


AFC Bournemouth AFC Bournemouth

AFC Bournemouth's women's team will take on Charlton Athletic in the Adobe FA Women's Cup third round on Sunday.

Here's everything you need to know ahead of the game...

What do I need to know about Charlton Athletic?

The visitors to Vitality Stadium are arguably the toughest team that the Cherries could have faced at this stage of the competition. The third round is when teams from the FA Women's Championship enter the competition, which is the second tier of women's football. 

Charlton are currently sat top of the division, having lost just once all season. They've played 11 times in their league campaign, winning six games and drawing four, and currently lead the likes of Sunderland, Southampton and Crystal Palace. 

For context, 24 places separate the two teams, with the Cherries currently sitting two tiers below the Addicks. 

Who do I need to know at Charlton Athletic?

If you're a long-term follower of women's football, Charlton's manager Karen Hills would be a name that you'll be familiar with.

A former defender, Hills was a regular for Charlton in the 2000s in a successful team which played in the Women's Super League, reaching the FA Cup final four times in five seasons.

She was long-serving manager of Tottenham Hotspur, leading the Lilywhites between 2009 and 2020, before joining Charlton in 2021.

Within the playing squad, they boast a number of talented players. 18-year-old Freya Godfrey is on loan from Arsenal and is a current England under-19 international, while top-scoring forward Kayleigh Green has 65 caps for Wales. 

How are the Cherries doing this season?

The season couldn't be going much better for Steve Cuss' side, sitting top of the FA Women's National League Division One South West with nine wins from nine games.

The top-of-the-table clash with Exeter City, the only other team to have won every league game this season, was postponed last weekend and will represent potentially a defining game in the campaign. 

Cuss' team recently knocked out higher-league opposition in Portsmouth in the Adopt South Women's Senior Cup, beating them 1-0 at Ringwood Community Hub. 

What is the Cherries' FA Cup record?

Reaching the third round of the FA Cup represents AFC Bournemouth's greatest ever performance in the tournament. 

Our previous best was reaching the second round, losing at that stage to Exeter City last season. 

It would take potentially the shock of the tournament to reach the fourth round on Sunday, when Women's Super League teams enter the competition, but anything is possible at Vitality Stadium. 

The squad is bolstered with some valuable experience with both Helen Bleazard and Molly Barron-Clark having played in FA Cup finals throughout their career.

Both Bleazard and Barron-Clark were part of the Bristol Academy squad that reached the 2011 final while the former turned out for Chelsea Ladies in the 2013 final. 


Which Cherries players should I look out for?

It's a squad full of talent with players across the team playing their part throughout the campaign. 

One player to keep an eye out for is top scorer Gemma McGuinness. The 28-year-old signed from Irish side Galway United in the summer and has 13 goals for the club this season, impressing with her turn of pace and attacking prowess.

Wing-back Abby Jones is a long-term star of the side, consistently impressing with her roving runs from deep and her incredible speed. 

Young bucks Lucy Cooper and Molly Gladwell have played key roles this season, despite their tender years. They're both attacking players and provide direct options for Cuss to use. 

How can I watch the game?

The historic game will take place at Vitality Stadium on Sunday 10th December with a 1pm kick-off. 

Tickets are available to purchase online here with all attendees earning a Cherries home point.

Supporters will also be able to purchase tickets on the day of the game, with walkups welcome, but are encouraged to buy in advance to avoid queues. 

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