Drew Spence has signed a two-year contract extension with Chelsea Ladies to take her through to 2020. While she has high hopes for the future, the 25-year-old’s main focus is on this Wednesday’s Champions League quarter-final with Montpellier, as she tells the official Chelsea website.
The Blues have travelled over to France today ahead of the first leg, which kicks off at 7.45pm UK time and will be shown live on Chelsea TV and our Facebook page. The return match takes place on Wednesday 28 March at Kingsmeadow (7.05pm kick-off).
Spence will go into the tie full of confidence, having agreed a new deal to continue her stay at a club where she has already spent the best part of 10 years, and she is hoping to write another chapter in what is already a glorious period in the club's history.
This is a second contract extension for you already this season. You must be very pleased with how things are going for both you and the club.
I'm really proud and thankful for the opportunity to extend my contract. I'm delighted to be at Chelsea. I've been here a while now and this is my home. We're on a journey and I'm really excited for the future.
On Sunday we beat Liverpool to reach the Women’s FA Cup semi-finals, which was the start of a crucial run of fixtures in three different competitions.
This is crunch time at the end of the season, and what we've been training for since the summer. There are two massive games against Montpellier in the Champions League, with a home match against Reading in between – we drew with them last time so we need to make sure we win that one to keep on top of the league. Then we've got Arsenal, which is always a massive game. They just won the Conti Cup, they're a tough team and, of course, it's a London derby so they'll want to get one over on us.
What do you know about Montpellier?
They're obviously a good team if they've made it into the last eight of the Champions League – we know ourselves just how hard it is to get here. We'll make sure we do our homework on them and as long as we play our game and we perform as well as we did in the previous two rounds, there’s no reason we can’t come out of it with the win.
This will be a different experience for you all, though, as it’s our first Champions League tie to start with the away leg.
For sure, but we'll keep the same mentality as we had in the previous two rounds. We never want to concede goals anyway, and we know getting away goals can be crucial and would set us up for the second leg. We're really focused on our task.
When you signed here 10 years ago, playing in a Champions League quarter-final must have seemed a long way away!
I know, but the development of this club is massive and it's not happened over a small period of time. The staff and players have had to work at it and as much as we're proud of what we've achieved, we're not finished yet and there's so much more to do.
How have you changed in the time you’ve been here?
I came here as a teenager and I was very shy – the girls will tell you I didn’t talk at all – but now I’m approaching the age of 26 and coming up to that senior bracket. I’m confident in myself, it’s an easy group to be part of and I’ve really grown up over the years.
What’s next for you?
I want to win as much as I can here. As a club we want to make sure we’re always competing at the top and winning as much as we can every year.
What about an international call-up? It must feel like a clean slate for everyone with Phil Neville now in charge.
Of course. Everyone knows when a new manager comes in there might be a chance for new players to come in. I didn't go to the last tournament, but I'll keep working hard and if I get the call-up it will be fantastic. If I don't, I'll just keep going.
Your team-mate and good friend, Hannah Blundell, received her first cap recently. How pleased were you for her?
Oh, I was delighted. She more than deserves it, because she's been one of the most consistent right-backs in this league for a long time. She's played that position for us for years and you can see she's growing up as a footballer too. I'm very proud of her and I'm sure she'll go on to have a long career.