Pedro Martinez Losa’s first experience of the Continental Cup was a frustrating one.
Three-time champions Arsenal reached their fourth consecutive final in October to face Manchester City at Adams Park, and controlled the game against Nick Cushing’s side for 72 minutes.
However, all their hard work was undone when Isobel Christiansen headed Krystle Johnston’s cross past Emma Byrne from close range to end the Gunners’ stranglehold on the competition.
"We are the most successful club in the tournament’s history and we also reached the final last season"
Arsenal were left deflated and, after a disappointing Women’s Super League campaign, Losa admitted there was a big rebuilding job ahead of him. But nine months later the manager believes his side are ready to reclaim the trophy.
“We have a good relationship with the Continental Cup,” he told Arsenal.com. “We are the most successful club in the tournament’s history and we also reached the final last season.
“We played well against Manchester City in that game and I think we probably deserved the win, but they took the opportunity that they had and it was very difficult for us to come back into the game.”
Since then seven of the Arsenal squad that finished runners-up have left the club, but Losa is confident that the players he has brought in can help his new-look side better last season’s achievement.
“We are a different team now and we are hoping to be in the final again later this year,” he said. “It’s a competition that we know we can win and to get back to the final we will have to go step by step, game by game, starting with the match against Watford.
“Watford play in the WSL2 so all of the pressure and expectation is on us, but we know that they will put up a good fight. They work hard and we need to respect them by playing at our level from the beginning.”
Arsenal Ladies host Watford at Meadow Park on Thursday. Kick-off is at 7.45pm (UK time) and you can follow all the action on Twitter at @ArsenalLadies.
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