Ironsides visit Bayliss Avenue this Sunday in the London Cup
Report by David Brenchley
Page last updated at 9:54AM GMT, Friday, 14 December 2012
Bill Long feels the Charlton womenís teamís younger players will benefit from first team exposure as he prepares to shuffle his pack again ahead of a London Cup quarter final against Battersea Ironsides.
The Addicks host the London & South East Division 1 at Bayliss Avenue on Sunday and Long plans to blood more youngsters despite their surprise 5-0 reverse against Lewes last weekend.
Charlton had already qualified for the second round before the game started, with the defeat just meaning they went through in second place in Group Two, and Long feels it will be a beneficial experience.
He said: “It was a little bit of a strange one to throw them in to but with the injuries and illnesses we had no choice really.
“It was great experience because some of them are from the younger age group so to play a competitive game for the first team is really important and you learn some lessons.
“For me and for the team it was a massive learning curve and it was great experience. I’m not too disheartened – more disappointed it was 5-0.
“Now we will see how some of them respond – will they roll their sleeves up and think ‘actually I liked it and I want to do a bit more’ or do they go ‘actually I’m not too sure I’m ready yet’.”
“[For the Battersea game] I think it will be nice to play some of the younger players in a team that has a little bit more experience around them to give them a bit more confidence.
“I would like to go back to bringing some more senior players in to support the young players if they come in.”
Long also re-outlined the fact the London Cup is a good chance for the Addicks to pick up some silverware this season.
They defeated Haringey Borough 12-0 in the previous round and, while a repeat of that would be nice, a win and to set up a semi-final tie with holders Tottenham Hotspur is the number one priority.
“Our ambition this year is to get to the final of the London Cup and try to win it,” he added.
“I hope the players can get up for it and hopefully we have a few people getting over their illnesses and coming back from injury so it will be a nice game for them to come in.
“Our build up will be exactly the same, we won’t be taking it easy just because they are a side that don’t play in our division.
“We will be going in with the right attitude, with a professionalism about us and that’s what we have to do in every game.
“Yes, we want the same result; if it’s 12 it’s fantastic, if it’s four or five it’s great. We have to win and we have to go forward - that’s the most important thing.”