Ahead of Chelsea Women's Continental League Cup quarter-final against Tottenham Hotspur tomorrow, manager Emma Hayes has discussed her desire to see an improvement from her team after our last match against Arsenal and why we will need to be wary of former Blue Bethany England.
After confirming that there are no injury concerns in her squad, with all the players available to face Tottenham at Brisbane Road at 7.45pm on Wednesday, Emma Hayes discussed the upcoming fixture.
When it was suggested her team are looking to set the record straight after being defeated in last season's League Cup final, the Blues manager dismissed those thoughts, insisting it is a more recent failure to win, in our draw against Arsenal in the Women's Super League last time out, which is foremost in her mind.
'We trained the last two days, had Sunday off. Everyone’s fit, ready to play a game tomorrow night,' she explained.
'I don’t always differentiate between the competitions, to be honest, I just take it as a game. So I think for us, our last game, our last performance, against Arsenal, was one where I felt we could have done better.
'So as far as I’m concerned, tomorrow is about making sure we get the performance right, to put ourselves in the best possible position to win the game.'
There will likely be a familiar face in the opposition ranks when we take on Spurs, with Bethany England making the move across London after leaving Chelsea earlier this month, and Hayes believes we should all know the threat the striker can pose from her time at Kingsmeadow.
'I expect the best from her,' added Hayes. 'She will put everything into her performance for her team and I am sure she will want to score a goal, as she always wants to do. I expect nothing else from her.'
Hayes was also asked about her obvious frustration, after Chelsea Women's last match against Liverpool at Kingsmeadow was started in sub-zero conditions by the officials following a pitch inspection, only to be abandoned after six minutes of play due to a frozen pitch.
She underlined the importance of continuing the progress already made to ensure that there is parity between the men's and women's game at the highest level, but also admitted it is important to take the time to consider what the best solutions are, for both players and supporters.
'I think just in general, if this is the top division for women’s football, then we should be afforded exactly the same opportunity. So as far as I am concerned this isn’t about Chelsea, this is about women’s football and being in a place where we’re working hard to build a fanbase, to build a business, to build all of these things for many years without equal access to things.
'Undersoil heating, as someone quite rightly pointed out to me, isn’t exactly environmentally friendly. So an environmentally friendly option for football pitches, in an ideal world, so that we can play in the top division is what I think we can all expect. Let’s hope that we continue to work towards that.
'I’ve said it for years, cancelling games has a detrimental impact on our sport. So whatever it takes to ensure that fans who are travelling up and down the country are not showing up and having a game cancelled six minutes in. That is something we should all work towards.'