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Women’s FA Cup Final: Robert Vilahamn and Marc Skinner enjoy the Wembley showpiece
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Women’s FA Cup Final: Robert Vilahamn and Marc Skinner enjoy the Wembley showpiece

Image source, Getty Images

Image caption, The build-up to the Women’s FA Cup final starts on Sunday at 1.50pm on BBC One and iPlayer, with commentary on BBC Radio 5 Live

Tottenham boss Robert Vilahamn says he has worked his entire career to manage a match at Wembley as he prepares to lead his side out in Sunday’s Women’s FA Cup final.

Either Manchester United or Spurs will win their first major women’s silverware in Sunday’s showpiece as both aim to lift the famous trophy for the first time.

As United boss Marc Skinner takes his side in back-to-back FA Cup finals at Wembley, Vilahamn has come full circle.

“I remember as a kid that stadium was the biggest I knew and so it was my dream to get there one day,” said the 41-year-old.

“I’ve worked hard for about thirty years to get to this stadium, so it’s more about enjoying the ride. The feelings I get are of course a mixture of stress and happiness.

“But I’m more looking forward to the game and hopefully we win. If we lose I’ll be very upset but I know a few weeks after that I’ll still be very proud of what we did so it’s a good feeling.” .”

United are seven points above Spurs in the league after playing a game more.

Vilahamn says his side go into Sunday’s match as the underdogs but are buoyed by the belief they can win.

“For me they are favorite, yes, they were there last year too, but we are constantly taking steps,” he added.

“We feel like we have everything to win and we have a good chance to win.”

Huge strides were made in last season’s FA Cup final, which set a world record crowd for a women’s domestic match when 77,390 fans turned out to watch Chelsea beat Manchester United 1-0.

This year’s edition sold out in record time and Vilahamn took some time during his pre-match press conference to reflect on the journey Spurs have taken from part-time to where they are today.

“In these few years we have grown from a semi-professional club on the women’s side to one of the best in the world,” he said. “Imagine if we can keep adding people around us and keep the fans coming and play in big stadiums?

“History is a big part of that, because you have to know your history before you can have a vision. I think it’s pretty cool to be part of a club that has that history, starting from the ground up, having that organic journey and now they’ll be playing at Wembley.”

‘You have to bring those feelings back and give more’

Video Caption, The Football News Show: Can win the FA Cup and save Marc Skinner at Manchester United?

Skinner says his side will use the pain of that defeat to motivate them this time.

“It has to, it has to feed into it,” he said. “When the pain hits, you feel it and you can remember it, it can be an extra drive and motivating factor.

“That’s how you have to use it. You have to bring back those feelings and give more. No one is guaranteed to win this final, but we have to give everything to make sure the performance is worth it.”

United defeated Spurs 4-0 in their first WSL meeting this season, but their recent meeting on April 21 was much closer as the sides drew 2-2.

Vilahamn may think United are favourites, but Skinner says he and his players will not underestimate their opponents.

“You would be a fool to go in and be confident that you would run this final,” he said. “Tottenham are a very, very good team. On their day they can beat anyone in this competition.

“We are quite humble people and Tottenham deserve to be in the final and not have underdog status. If you reach a final you deserve to be in the final.”