Manchester United manager Marc Skinner has warned his team that they need to be at their best to avoid a potential upset against Lewes in the quarter-finals of the Women’s FA Cup. The Red Devils will visit the Dripping Pan to face Scott Booth’s side, who are currently seventh in the second tier. Skinner has been impressed by Lewes’ style of play and has urged his players to take them seriously. He said, “If we’re not at the very best of our game, then the banana skin potential comes up. We won’t take them lightly and they should expect the very best of us.”
Lewes is the lowest-ranked team left in the competition and their home clash with Manchester United comes just five days after their call for equal prize money in the FA Cup. The club’s women’s side has received £45,000 for their cup progress, while men’s sides who reach this stage receive £450,000. It has also been reported that Lewes will receive no fees for their game being broadcast by the BBC, in contrast to the £200,000 paid to men’s teams when their quarter-final games are shown on TV.
Skinner has expressed his support for Lewes’ equal pay call and the growth of women’s football. He said, “I commend all of the women at Lewes and everybody who is fighting hard behind the scenes to work for equality and equity because we’re part of that. I feel we’re growing but we should always keep looking at that. Are there ways we can add more money and are there ways we can add more funding to it?”
Skinner’s side will be looking to bounce back from their loss to Chelsea in their last outing by progressing to the FA Cup semi-finals. He has praised his players’ hunger and energy ahead of the game. The match between Lewes and Manchester United can be watched live on BBC iPlayer at 12:30 pm today.