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Midfielder unlikely to dwell on cup loss

By Western Gazette - North Dorset  |  Posted: May 26, 2011

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INTERNATIONAL duty, the Champions League and a bid to climb the FA Women's Super League leave Helen Bleazard confident of overcoming cup final disappointment.

The Bristol Academy midfielder from Yeovil struck the goal frame from a free kick as the top flight newcomers fell 2-0 to Arsenal in their first ever FA Women's Cup final.

Despite the result, the 20-year-old Yarlington Homes employee and former Glover refused to be downbeat with the result. Next month she links up with the Wales squad, before returning to WSL action ahead of the Champions League in September.

Bleazard said: "Everything has come at all at once so we have not had much time to reflect. We have got a week off now and it is only just sinking in that we have lost the cup final.

"Our next league game is July 22 so we have got a month off for the Women's World Cup. We have got a lot of time to prepare for that, I go away with Wales in June so I have got that time to prepare.

"Looking back, we are gutted but if you look at our football CV we are good competitors in the Super League, we did ourselves justice in the cup final and we are one of a few teams to be playing in the Champions League."

Bristol Academy will join fellow cup finalists Arsenal in the UEFA European competition and Bleazard said the achievement was a credit to the city.

"It starts in September-time so that is going to be such a good experience," she said. "There is only us, Everton and Arsenal that are competing or have competed in the Champions League so to have any Bristol football club competing in the Champions League is a big credit anyway."

Bleazard added she was a matter of feet away from giving Bristol Academy a way back into Saturday's final, played in front of almost 14,000 at Coventry City's Ricoh Arena.

She said: "I had a free kick in the first half, which I hit over. As soon as I put the ball down for the second I knew I was going to hit a good shot. It showed on the replays when I watched it that the keeper had no chance. It is just gutting because had I just put it a yard or so to the left it probably would have gone in."

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