At the halfway point, the score was level between Chelsea and a formidable opponent that had already bested Arsenal and Wolfsburg in this season's Champions League. 

However, The Blues rallied to secure a dominant victory, with Sam Kerr's hat-trick leading the team to a 4-1 triumph.

  • On Sam Kerr's Performance:

Despite not being at full fitness, Kerr emerged as the decisive factor in the Women's Champions League clash against Paris FC, demonstrating her exceptional talent and skill.

"I fancied her to score a hat trick tonight! I felt like she didn't get enough credit for all the other work she did.

"Whilst she's not by her standards top of the top yet, I don't know anyone who just puts the ball away like she does.

"She is so alert and decisive with her movement. The third goal was from brilliant centre-half-play."

Hayes mentioned the fitness of the Australian international, who had recently been sidelined by a calf injury, and had been working to get back to her full fitness.

"She needed the run of games. You have to be mindful of the calf injury she has had; the last thing you need is fatigue and her getting tired.

"It's about carefully managing the loads to progressively get there. If that's her at eighty per cent or whatever she's feeling, I'll take that every day of the week. I can't wait for the hundred percent version!"

  • On the Team's Defensive Challenges:

"I felt like we didn't play close enough to Sam [Kerr] and we struggled to build in a double pivot.

"We changed some of our shape after twenty minutes, but we were sloppy in the first half, and the game's accumulation caught up with us.

"I think it was a performance where we dug something out, but the strength came from the bench tonight."

  • On the Impact of Kirby's Cameo:

Fran Kirby, who had been sidelined with a knee injury for much of the year, made a stunning return to the pitch by injecting pace and energy into the game after being introduced as a substitute at half-time. 

Her experience and expertise were the key to unlocking the match's potential, which had been lacking in the first half, which was touched upon by Hayes:

"I rated Paris. I felt there was a lot for us to do out of possession and over a ninety-minute period may have been too much for Fran [Kirby].

I said to Sarina [Wiegman] this morning, it is so important we keep her healthy for both England and Chelsea.

Whilst she wants to play in every moment, I think that was the perfect cameo from her, the team needed it."

  • On Millie Bright's Injury:

The Chelsea back line showed a few errors in the first half, which made Millie Bright's absence quite noticeable.

Coach Hayes explained that the injury was due to the defender's hasty return to fitness for the World Cup, though she was unable to provide further specifics.

"Millie [Bright] was fifty-fifty yesterday, but really just nowhere near it. I haven't seen her today, and I haven't spoken to the medical team, so we should be able to provide an update tomorrow.

"She rushed back to get fit for the World Cup, so there was going to be a cost involved later down the line.

"I believe in getting things right; you can play with little niggles, and believe it or not, a lot of players can carry injuries a lot of the time."

  • On the Low Attendance:

After a triumphant 5-1 win against Liverpool in the WSL, the Blues made their way back to the ‘Bridge with hopes of maintaining financial sustainability. 

To ensure this, the English Champions limited ticket sales to 5,000 but left room for expansion should demand increase. Although the absence of fans was noticeable, it did not hinder the determination of Hayes and her team.

"I didn't really notice, to be honest. In fact, it helps me; I can actually coach a little bit more, and they can hear me. From my perspective, it was great.

"Of course, we want the numbers to be greater, but I'm not the right person behind the strategy behind that.

"There is certainly work to be done across every game to build our numbers, but it didn't affect the team tonight."

  • On Conceding and the Team's Fatigue:

"We should have six points; it is not our fault we don't have the full six. The three games in six days, tonight was the impact and the fallout from that.

I thought we looked very leggy first half, and that's something to be mindful of. When we are facing BK Hecken, I think we have the quality to progress from this group, and that's our aim."

On the Players' Requests to Be Substituted:

"They [Kerr and James] asked to come off! The players really felt it tonight. It's great to get them out, and it was great to be able to go to the bench.

"I think bringing experience, in particular with Sophie [Ingle] coming on, she brought calm and composure which was what we needed.

"The thing I enjoyed the most was adapting quickly and the impact of the change at half-time."

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