The game comes just six days after the lifting of the national restrictions and, despite the four-month hiatus, the squad have remained busy since their last competitive fixture back in December.
Players and coaches have taken part in a variety of online sessions that has included conditioning, tactical analysis, performance psychology and nutrition and hydration, in order to ensure the enforced layoff was as productive as possible and that they are raring to go once they return to the pitch this weekend.
Orient began their FA Cup journey back in October with a 1-0 victory in a London derby against Dulwich Hamlet. Katherine Long’s 7th minute strike, in front of a packed crowd at Champion Hill, was enough to secure safe progression to the Third Qualifying Round.
A trip to the seaside followed in early December as Chris Brayford’s side comfortably saw off Eastbourne Town 4-1 away from home. Goals from Hayley Barton, Allison McCann and Kate Bradley saw The O’s head into the break three goals to the good, before Egle Trezzi completed the Orient scoring late in the second half.
The win against Eastbourne set up a first home tie of the competition for Orient as they faced off against fellow WNL Division One side Actonians in the first game played at their new home in Hornchurch.
Heading into the final minute, The O’s were down 1-0 and looked to be crashing out of the competition until Trezzi levelled the scores with a stunner from outside the box. Orient weren’t done there though and deep into stoppage time they found a dramatic late winner through Scarlett Smith to set up this weekend’s tie with Hounslow.
Speaking ahead of the game, midfielder Egle Trezzi emphasised her squad’s eagerness for what could be a history making afternoon for the club.
“We can’t wait to be back on the pitch and compete in the FA Cup. Despite the challenges of this season, we have kept working hard and did not lose focus. The morale in the squad is high and we are ready to battle.”
Defender Sophie Lee and forward Nyara Denny echoed their captain’s sentiments.
“We are so excited to get back onto the pitch. We have worked really hard during lockdown although we were not together, we still worked as a team and motivated each other.”, said Denny.
‘’We can’t wait to get back out on the pitch Sunday, it has been such a long time since our last game, but we have worked hard during lockdown and are fully prepared and ready to go’’, Lee added.
Previously known as QPR WFC, Hounslow compete in the FA WNL South – one tier higher than The O’s.
Prior to the WNL being declared null and void last month, The Tridents sat bottom of the division having lost all eight of their league games played.
The match takes place this Sunday April 4th, with kick off scheduled for 2PM.
Due to the current restrictions, this game will unfortunately be played behind closed doors. However, O’s fans can keep track of the game with live commentary provided on our Facebook page.