Interviews

Houghton relishing WSL opener

Steph Houghton says she and her team-mates can’t wait to get going ahead of City’s Barclays Women’s Super League curtain-raiser against Aston Villa.

Gareth Taylor’s side travel to Villa Park for a 12:30 (UK) kick-off looking to begin our domestic campaign with a victory.

On a personal note, after making her return from injury in our Champions League clash with WFC Tomiris-Turan in August, the fixture could see Houghton make her first domestic appearance since January.

The skipper is expecting City to be pushed to our limits against Aston Villa, but admits she is excited for the challenge.

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“[I’m] really excited. It’s been a long time coming and there’s been a lot of hard work behind the scenes,” Houghton explained.

“To have everyone back and be able to train with everyone, we all just can’t wait to get going.

“Whenever we’ve played Villa in the past, and I’m guessing this will be no different going forward they’ll make it difficult for us, they’ll want to press and be aggressive.

“For us it’s just about being calm in those moments and really controlling the football in and out of possession.

“We’ll do what we do but of course we need to respect Aston Villa, they’ve strengthened with the likes of Rachel Daly coming in.

“We have to respect our opponents but focus on what we can do best.”

Hear Steph's thoughts in full via the video above...

ASTON VILLA V CITY

City lock horns with Aston Villa on Sunday 18 September, with kick-off scheduled for 12:30 (UK).

You can follow all of the game's key moments via our dedicated matchday Twitter account: @ManCityWomen while our Matchday Centre - beginning at 11:00 - will provide minute-by-minute text commentary, analysis and stats before, during and after the action.

A detailed match report and reaction from Gareth Taylor and a player will also be made available soon after the final whistle, while highlights and a full-match replay can be accessed from 12:00 on Tuesday 20 September.

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