Women's Team

Taylor: Hemp could return for Manchester derby

Gareth Taylor says Lauren Hemp has an 'outside chance' of making her return from injury in December's Manchester derby.

The winger picked up a thigh injury in our 3-0 victory over Reading, which saw her pull out of the latest England squad during the recent international break.

With an initial scan identifying the problem, Taylor confirmed that Hemp will have another towards the end of next week to discover the extent of the injury.

And while the boss wouldn't commit to a definitive timeframe on the 22-year-old's recovery, he earmarked December's Manchester derby as a potential return date following our 2-1 triumph at Everton.

BARCLAYS WSL ETIHAD DERBY: GET YOUR TICKETS

"Lauren has had an original scan which showed up an issue, we just need to determine how big an issue that is," Taylor explained.

"Sometimes with muscle tendons it needs to be rescanned to try and find out for certain.

"It’ll be a push maybe for the derby, it’s an outside chance.

"We’ll know more probably at the end of this week when she has the rescan."

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Victory on Merseyside was our fifth in a row in the WSL, with Bunny Shaw on the scoresheet in each of those triumphs.

The Jamaican is the league's top scorer, with her tally for the season now standing at an astonishing eight goals in just seven matches.

But while Taylor is delighted with Shaw's rich vein of scoring form - and even predicted that she would poach another goal this afternoon - he insists that the forward offers far more to the team than an impressive strike rate.

He said: "She does so much more than score goals for us.

"The way she takes the hits at the top end of the pitch and gives it out, she’s very strong, looking a lot fitter, she has the rhythm of playing and is the real focal point.

"I actually said before the game that she’ll get a tap in today, we knew Everton would try to play similar and there would be some opportunities.

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"She was there and there were probably some others as well where she could have even got a hat-trick.

"It’s great that she scored, but we’re always about challenges and how we support the players to achieve more.

"Knowing Bunny, she’ll be happy with the goal, performance and the win but probably thinks she could’ve got the match ball today."

CITY V UNITED: ETIHAD DERBY

City welcome Manchester United to the Etihad Stadium on Sunday 11 December.

Kick-off is scheduled for 12:30 (UK), with tickets selling fast for our third-ever women's match at the Etihad.

We hosted Everton there back in May 2014, before welcoming our local rivals in September 2019, when Caroline Weir’s wonder strike saw us run out 1-0 winners in front of what was then a WSL record crowd, and what remains a club record of 31, 213 fans.

With over 30,000 tickets already sold, it promises to be another historic occasion.

You can secure your tickets online by visiting: www.mancity.com/tickets/womens or by calling: +44 (0)161 444 1894.

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