Manchester City's investment and campaign is finally bearing fruit. The Citizens have eight consecutive triumphs in the Women’s Super League that left them second in the table with 36 points, just two behind leaders Chelsea. On the other hand, Everton have been unbeaten for three games and currently sit fifth with 22 points.
Gareth Taylor said he is expecting a tough game against Toffees the Man City website:
“We’re expecting a tough game. Everton made a really good start to the season and they’ve picked up again recently. Every game is hard – there are no easy games. (...) We need to remain focused and not have any complacency. We need to work hard on the training pitches, make sure everyone recovers in the right manner and then go again on Sunday”.
The victory against Tottenham last week left Willie Kirk quite hopeful about the next Toffees confrontations and he talked about it at Everton pre-match press conference:
“I feel our performances are getting better and better. I actually think our performance against Reading was better than against Spurs – but last week we got the goals and that’s what was lacking from the Reading display. We created a lot of good chances last week. (...) We’ve taken confidence from that result”.
The match will kick off at 2 p.m. (GMT).
Taylor and Lucy Bronze have been nominated in February's FA Women’s Super League awards as Manager of the Month and Player of the Month.
Demi Stokes and Gemma Bonner are still doubtful as they recover from injury.
At Everton press conference, Taylor did not underestimate Kirk's team: “We expect no different, Willie will set his team up to be really tough and resolute to break down.”
On the other side, Everton came from three unbeaten confrontations: 1-1 against Birmingham, 1-1 against Reading and 3-2 against Tottenham.
Kirk bets on Izzy Christensen as a secret weapon against Citizens: "Christensen has a daily standard that is very, very high - and it's contagious, it rubs off on people. She is very important for any future success at this club."
Jill Scott has been nominated for February's FA Women’s Super League award as Player of the Month.
Kirk has the entire cast at his disposal, except Scott, who is on loan from City.
Predicted line ups
Manchester City: Roebuck; Bronze, Houghton, Dahlkemper, Greenwood; Coombs; Kelly, Mewis, Weir, Hemp; White. Coach: Gareth Taylor.
Everton: MacIver; Moe Wold, Finnigan, Sevecke, Turner; Christiansen, Graham, Stringer; Emslie, Gauvin, Sorensen. Coach: Willie Kirk.
Ones to watch
Ellen White has been directly involved in 12 goals in eight league matches against Everton - 8 goals and 4 assists. Moreover, Lauren Hemp and Caroline Weir have scored five times in the last six league games. Sam Mewis hit the ground running after injury with three goals in two games.
On the other side, Christiansen and Lucy Graham are the main Everton highlights. While Christiansen has 4 goals and 4 assists, Graham adds 4 goals and 3 assists, being so important that they are absolute starters in the team.
How to watch
The match will kick off at 2 p.m. (GMT) at Academy Stadium and will be shown on the FA Player.