Morgan looking forward to West Ham challenge

Esme Morgan says she’s looking forward to the challenge of West Ham on Sunday as City restart our league campaign.

The meeting with the Hammers represents our first fixture in five weeks, following the Barclays Women's Super League winter break.

During that time Gareth Taylor’s side have enjoyed a well-earned rest, before returning to training in January as we geared up for the second half of the season.

And our versatile defender explained how she’s itching to return to action after the hiatus.

“I can’t wait [for the restart]. I feel like we’ve had a slow build-up in the last week and coming back in after Christmas, had a bit of fitness testing which is never too much fun,” Morgan said.

“Now we’ve got some fun games to look forward to so it feels like training has a bit of a more direct purpose, sort of preparing for the game now.

“We had our first look at West Ham this morning in training so I’m looking forward to the challenge.

“There’s a reason they do that [fitness test], to check we’ve not had too many mince pies or pigs in blankets!

“Everyone came back in such good shape and have obviously been working hard over the break, so the standard of training has been very, very good so I think we’re in a good place.”

City were in formidable form before the pause in play – recording a 10-game unbeaten streak in all competitions, which included nine consecutive victories.

This has seen Taylor’s team climb up the league table and start our defence of the Conti Cup in perfect fashion.

Many would have forgiven our players for not wanting to stop playing due to our rich vein of form.

But Morgan believes there’s been no time lost since we last played on 11 December 2022.

“Sometimes you just want to keep going and going and see how far you can take the streak but I think seeing how everyone’s come back to training with the quality and intensity we’ve had it almost feels like we haven’t been away,” she explained.

“We’ve sort of picked up with the form and standards we’ve had so I feel it’s something we can kick straight back into and hopefully keep going until the end of the season now.

“They’re always difficult to break down. I think often when we play them, they [West Ham] tend to sort of stack up with five at the back and try to keep things really tight and not allow us too many spaces, but it’s going to be one of those games.

“We’ve got to be patient, move the ball quickly and try to break them down throughout the game and wear their energy out and create our chances and be clinical when we do get them.

“I think it’s just carrying the momentum we’ve had. If we come out of this game with a good, comfortable dominating victory then I think it’s one where we’re straight back into the form we had before Christmas.

“And hopefully we can carry our winning run into the busy period we have coming up.”


The official Manchester City app will offer comprehensive coverage of our meeting with West Ham.

You can follow every kick of what promises to be an exciting encounter over on the official Man City app.

Our Matchday Centre, beginning at 17:00, provides blow by blow text updates, stats and analysis before, during and after the match.

And then from kick-off, Mike Minay and former City goalkeeper Karen Bardsley will guide you through the action with live commentary.

A detailed match report and reaction from the manager and players alike can be accessed soon after full-time.

Highlights from the encounter and a full-match replay - available on CITY+ and Recast - will be made available from midday on Monday 16 January.

The best way to follow Manchester City is by downloading the official app!

Download on your mobile phone or tablet via Apple's App Store or Google Play Store, or, if you already have the app, then simply visit the stores and update.