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Stanway: Let's finish on a high

CLOSE UP: Georgia Stanway insists she must remain focused

CLOSE UP: Georgia Stanway insists she must remain focused

Georgia Stanway has urged Man City Women to use Sunday’s defeat to Arsenal as motivation in the FA WSL Spring Series finale.

The defeat to the Gunners dented the Blues’ hopes of winning the tournament, with Nick Cushing’s side currently sitting third behind Liverpool and Chelsea with just two games remaining.

City are still able to lift the trophy but will have to rely on other results with Chelsea’s goal difference far superior – helped with their 7-0 triumph over table-topping Liverpool.

Stanway insists her side must maintain their ‘never say die’ attitude though and in true City spirit, fight to the end, starting with three points at Sunderland on Wednesday night.

“We’re very excited for the game,” she declared. “We only have two games left of the Spring Series and we need to end it in high spirits.

“We were beaten on Sunday against Arsenal but that spurs us on to get back to winning ways.

“That was the first game we’d lost in the league for 31 matches. That’s a big thing for us.

“Losing gives us an opportunity to learn. We can pick a part of the game and think about how we could have done better.

“We need to come back strong and get back to winning ways, for the staff, the players and the fans.

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“We can put that right at Sunderland. It’s important to win these next two games to put us in the best possible position for the final result.”

On the subject of the title race, Stanway asserts her side will do all they can to claim first prize.

“We’ve made it exciting for the fans,” she joked, “although of course, we’d have liked to be in a better position.

“We’re still in a good position but there’s still work to do and we’re willing to put in that work.”

It’s been a hectic few weeks for City with up to three games per week.

Stanway admitted it has been a challenging period but added it has also been enjoyable, particularly with Cushing rotating the squad and spreading gametime around.

“It means a lot that Nick has trust in the young ones,” she continued.

“You’ve seen the likes of me and Ellie Roebuck getting gametime and it’s important that he has faith in the younger players. He trusts us 100%.

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“It’s been good to see everyone playing and enjoying themselves.

“I think that’s shown with the amount of goalscorers we’ve had. Even Lucy Bronze has been on fire!

“Admittedly, after having so many games back to back, we were feeling it in our legs.

“The tiredness was kicking in but that’s no excuse when it comes to football – it’s only 90 minutes at the end of the day.

“Overall, it’s been positive.”

Fixtures against Sunderland will always spark fond memories for Stanway, who bagged a hat-trick – her first senior treble – in last year’s home clash against the Black Cats.

Asked whether history can repeat itself in the trip to the Hetton Centre, she laughed: “I’ll do my best!

“It just happened so we’ll see what happens!”

City face Sunderland at 7pm on Wednesday 31 May. Follow @ManCityWomen on Twitter for updates.

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Cushing: Defeat is our best motivator

LOOKING AHEAD: Nick Cushing's Man City Women face Lyon in the Champions League semi-finals

Nick Cushing insists Man City Women will learn from their defeat to Arsenal.

The Blues lost their first league game at the Academy Stadium since April 2015, thanks to Jordan Nobbs’ long-range free-kick.

Match Report

Report: Man City Women 0-1 Arsenal

STEADY: Lucy Bronze rides a challenge

Man City Women suffered a blow to their league title defence, having suffered a 1-0 defeat at home to Arsenal.

Jordan Nobbs’ stunning long-range free-kick separated the sides at the Academy Stadium, as the Blues suffered their first league home loss since the two sides met in April 2015.

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Houghton proud of City spirit

CITY UNITED: Steph Houghton warms up in a tribute shirt along with fellow team-mates

Man City Women captain Steph Houghton believes her side showed a great level of passion for the city in their 1-0 victory over Chelsea.

The Blues paid their respects following Monday’s tragic events by donning ‘We love Manchester’ t- shirts during the warm-up, before a well-respected and emotional minutes’ silence was conducted prior to kick-off.