By Chris Harris

Laura Harvey is backing her team to advance to the last 16 of the Women's Champions League after a hard-fought win in Serbia on Wednesday.

The Arsenal Ladies manager saw her players start and finish strongly against ZFK Masinac, running out 3-1 winners thanks to goals from Rachel Yankey, Gilly Flaherty and Danielle Carter.

The Serbs threatened for a while and even drew level in the second half but Harvey believes favourable conditions will help Arsenal when they host the second leg at Boreham Wood FC on October 14.

"We'll take nothing for granted against a young side who will never give up battling, but home advantage could be crucial," said Harvey.

"We were travel-weary going into this game after a 12-hour journey on the day before the match, and we've had to play in boiling hot sunshine on a dreadful pitch.

"Playing at home in October and on a far better playing surface will hopefully work in our favour - but this tie is not over yet.

"We let them back into the game and we got punished. It became a very competitive match and we could have ended up losing."

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23 Sep 2010