Interviews

Taylor praises ‘leaders’ Bronze and Greenwood

Gareth Taylor has hailed the influence of defensive duo Lucy Bronze and Alex Greenwood ahead of Wednesday’s Continental Cup quarter-final.

City welcome Bristol City to the Academy Stadium hoping to register a sixth successive victory in all competitions and book our spot in the last four of the Conti Cup in the process.

Bronze, who was included in the FIFPro World XI for 2021 earlier this week, has played an important role in that form, looking back to her best having returned for her first appearances since having knee surgery in the summer.

And Taylor believes the defender can have a major impact on our fortunes going into the second half of the campaign.

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“Lucy is obviously great to have, she’s effectively like a quiet leader,” he said.

“She really drives standards, enthusiasm and individuals around her. To have her back, it speaks volumes the performances we’ve had recently with her back in the team.

“We were a little unfortunate with COVID issues we had before Christmas with games falling where she would have been available.

“To not have a player of Lucy's calibre in the first half of the season was obviously really difficult and I think we’re benefiting from it now.

“We just need to keep monitoring her and make sure we don’t do too much too soon and use her as a massive impact in the second half of season.”

Taylor also singled out fellow England international Alex Greenwood for her important role in our campaign to date, after she made her 50th City appearance in Saturday’s WSL win over Aston Villa.

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And the City boss says she deserves immense credit for how she helped to drive the team through a difficult early period of the season.

He said: “(Alex is) a huge player for us, she’s great to work with and I’m not surprised how well she’s done.

“Are there things we work on to improve? Of course, but she’s been the one constant this season in that back line, fortunately for us.

“It would have been very difficult for her. She will have played with a number of partners to the right of her with players to the left as well, changing a hell of a lot with the injuries we suffered.

“But the way she handled things was amazing and I can’t speak highly enough of her.”

Hear the City boss' thoughts in full via the video above...

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