Long-standing Citizen, Abbie McManus and 2016 signing Megan Campbell have both signed new contracts with double-winners, Manchester City.
With deals and new players being brought in elsewhere in FA WSL, Nick Cushing has looked to lock down players he believes will be key to retaining their crown next year, giving McManus her first professional deal as well as rewarding the promise he’s seen in Republic of Ireland international, Megan Campbell.
The longest serving Citizen still at City, Abbie McManus got off to a fantastic start this term, cementing her place in the team, paired at centre-back with captain Steph Houghton. Her exemplary form for City earning her a call up to the England under-23s, her natural defensive nous a key factor in City’s fine defensive form but with a season cut short after an injury away to Notts County the 23 year-old is “buzzing” with the deal.
Contracted for two years, McManus has started she’s thrilled to be making the switch to full-time football, after her “devastating” injury she’s happy to have finished her rehab off on an even happier note. Already looking at next year, McManus’ main goal is to earn her spot back in the starting line-up, well settled at City and with “no intention” of playing anywhere else the talented young defender is looking to prove herself and “replay” the faith show in her by Cushing.
After a brief trial with the Manchester club, featuring in all three of their pre-season friendlies, Drogheda native Megan Campbell signed ahead of the 2016 season, the small amount fans had seen of her enough for them to be 100% behind the deal. An ankle injury picked up on international duty before the season started ruled Campbell out for the first-half of the season, her return to full-fitness short-lived before the FSU graduate picked up another knock that took her out of contention for the rest of the season.
With just two starts and two apps off of the bench for the entire year, Campbell might have been forgiven for worrying about the future at her new club but manager, Cushing has rewarded all he’s seen from Campbell on the training pitch.
Unhappy with how the year has panned out because of her injuries, Campbell said she felt “relief” to have signed on the dotted line, following a number of talks with Cushing, the defender was left on a more positive footing, the manager happy with the “potential” he’d seen her in the Irish international. Much like McManus, Campbell feels she’s in the right club, praising the staff, players and facilities at City, aware of the challenge that awaits in the new year, willing to battle for a place in the team as well as for silverware.
The manager, on the back of a whirlwind season was delighted to have secured the two for the future, already happy with all they’ve contributed this season, he sees younger players as the future of the team. Already having stated he’s more focused on nurturing the talent already the team and not necessarily spending heavily in the window, he reaffirmed the statement, speaking of the importance of keeping a hold of the “key players” already at the CFA.
Pleased with what he’s seen on and off the pitch, Cushing spoke of the “potential” of the pair, knowing there is still plenty more to come from both, putting great faith in the defensive duo. His final message one that spoke of the badge and shirt, making City not just a “club that wins trophies” but one that creates and moulds the best players who want to “play for the shirt and fans”, taking pride in their club. Putting his faith in his players who he knows will replay that belief.