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Monday, 22 January, 2001, 01:44 GMT
Proctor backs Fulham bid
Shannon MacMillan and Margunn Haugenes
Norway's Margunn Haugenes scored twice for Fulham
By BBC Sport Online's Tony Leighton

Only one of the three scheduled cup ties was able to take place at the weekend.

Fulham trounced Manchester City 8-0 in the lone fixture to earn themselves a trip to National Division strugglers Liverpool in next Sunday's round five.

Newly signed Norwegian international Marianne Pettersen hit a hat-trick on her debut for the Cottagers, while her Olympic gold medal-winning colleague Margunn Haugenes bagged a brace.

City battled valiantly and trailed by only a single goal until the 44th minute, but England's first professional women's soccer team took full control after the break.

Hard battle

Despite Fulham playing in a League two grades lower than the top flight, they will go into their match on Merseyside as overwhelming favourites, but manager Frank McMorrow is remaining modest.

"We are really looking forward to playing against a National Division side - this is the class of competition we want to be coming up against every week, and that's our long term aim," said McMorrow.

Fulham have set their sights on winning the FA Cup this season
  Charlton's Tara Proctor

"We shall give them the respect any top flight team deserves and we'll go into the game totally prepared for a hard battle."

Fulham have already beaten one top National Division side this season, handing FA Cup holders Charlton Athletic a 5-1 drubbing in the London County Cup.

Cup in sight

Tara Proctor, Charlton's England midfield star, has no doubt that the Cottagers will continue on their winning path in the FA Cup.

"We played below par when Fulham beat us, but they were tremendous on the day and their fitness really told," Proctor admitted.

"They've got some excellent players and I think they'll be a threat to the top teams."

"Fulham have set their sights on winning the FA Cup this season and I believe they could do it.

"If we come through our tie against Everton we'll hope to avoid Fulham and Arsenal in the quarter finals."

Charlton's trip to Everton is the tie of the round.

It is the only tie of the eight which pits two National Division sides against each other, and it will mean Proctor plays against her England colleague Mo Marley.

I've never been on the losing side against Everton
  Tara Proctor

Proctor is currently playing up front rather than in midfield and has fond memories of the last time they played Everton in the FA Cup - when she also came up against defender Marley.

"We beat them 4-3 and I got two of our goals," recalled Proctor.

Three days before they each celebrate their birthdays they will put aside their friendship forged at England level to lock horns in the FA Cup.

Ominously for the Merseysiders, Proctor noted: "I've never been on the losing side against Everton - and I don't intend starting next week.

Norway's Marianne Pettersen in action
Fulham's new signing Marianne Pettersen

"Our games always seem to be tight, but we nearly always come out on top. If we have our strongest team out and play to our potential we should be good enough to go through."

Leaders Arsenal and second placed Doncaster Belles both have fifth round Cup ties against lower league opposition.

The Gunners are away to Southern Division side Chelsea and the Belles - last season's FA Cup runners-up - are at home to Northern Divisioners Wolves.

"Chelsea are a good young team with lots of potential, but Arsenal are probably the best side in the country at the moment," said Proctor.

"They're strong in defence, they've got great international strikers and they've got one of the best midfielders in the country in Jane Ludlow.

"Chelsea will hopefully give them a decent game though, and the same goes for Wolves."

The other National Division side still in the competition, Southampton Saints, still await the outcome of the match between West Ham and Ilkeston - one of the two ties postponed this weekend.

AXA F.A. Women's Cup, Round Five:
Scheduled for Sunday 28 January

Chelsea vs Arsenal
Doncaster Belles vs Wolverhampton Wanderers
Everton vs Charlton Athletic
Liverpool vs Fulham
Berkhamsted Town or Brighton vs Birmingham City or Aston Villa
Bristol Rovers or Mansfield Town vs Chester Le Street
Blackpool Wren Rovers or Barking vs Swindon Town or Enfield or Barnet
West Ham Utd or Ilkeston Town vs Southampton Saints

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See also:

14 Jan 01 |  Football
Belles hell for Barry Town
10 Jan 01 |  Wales
Welsh Ladies face league exit
07 Jan 01 |  Football
Abbot jumps to Charlton's defence
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