Hayes: Time to produce

Emma Hayes will not underestimate London Bees when her Chelsea Ladies face the WSL2 side in our Women’s FA Cup opener this afternoon.

The Blues travel to the Hive for today’s 2pm kick-off in the fourth round of the competition, a game which is preceded by the two clubs’ development sides meeting at the same venue from midday.

While Hayes has overseen two massive wins over the Bees in the Continental Tyres Cup, our most recent meeting with our fellow London club, which took place in the same competition in 2016, did not go to plan.

A 3-3 draw may have provided plenty of entertainment for those in attendance, but the Blues’ subsequent 4-2 defeat on penalties left the manager fuming.

‘I won’t be underestimating them and I don’t think the players will either,’ she said of today’s match. ‘It’s important players who didn’t play against Man City are ready for this game, because we’ve got a big squad for that very reason.

‘I felt we managed the turnaround between our last two games very well – we looked the fresher of the two sides in the match against City. I’ve got to be able to do that again for Sunday.

‘When we produce performances like we did against City, the players on the bench have got to be patient, take their opportunities and produce performances when they’re given a chance. That’s part and parcel of playing for this club.’