Women's Team

Houghton: Taylor’s taken my game to new heights

Steph Houghton believes Gareth Taylor has helped develop her game as a centre-back in ways she couldn’t have imagined.

The influential defender has signed a new contract, committing her future to the Club until 2024. 

This will incredibly see her enter a 10th year at City – with three of her seasons so far in sky blue under the guidance of the Welshman. 

In total, she’s made 59 appearances for Taylor, while helping us lift the 2021 FA Cup and the 2022 Continental Cup throughout his tenure to date. 


But it’s been throughout the final months of the 2022/23 campaign where Houghton feels the boss has transformed her game further than ever before. 

“Me and Gaz have worked together for over three years now and for me, he’s developed me as a centre half in ways I didn’t think I could progress,” she explained. 

“In terms of my learning about the game and the way we play, we love having the ball at our feet as centre halves and that brings out the best of me in terms of controlling possession.  

“He’s really pushed me on my leadership skills in terms of in games and away from the pitch and I think especially over the last four or five months, I’ve been playing the best football I’ve ever played in my career.  

“In terms of confidence and allowing us to get my rhythm and to get that control back. It really has brought out the best in me and hopefully there’s still more to come.” 

Since arriving at the Club in January 2014, Houghton has established herself as one of the most iconic and legendary figures in the women’s game.  

The colossal centre-back is our highest appearance holder in City Women’s history, amassing a whopping total of 233 outings in sky blue.  


Regardless of her immense success to date, Houghton says she didn’t have to think twice about extending her stay in Manchester. 

She added: “I always wanted it to happen and obviously I know where I am in my career in terms of my age and my experience, so, for me it was more clarity about my role in terms of on and off the pitch. 

“I feel as though I have a lot to give in terms of my experience, my leadership to bring the young players through. 

“In terms of ‘do I want to stay?’ 100% yes, there was no real kind of any doubt about that at all.  

“I wanted to be here for as long as possible and I always said to myself ‘if I was enjoying it and happy’ then ‘why would I not?’. 

“For me I’m absolutely buzzing to be sitting here and talking about signing another year.”