Villa Ladies preview: Boss Hunt - Keep up feelgood factor
Boss Joe Hunt has challenged Villa Ladies to keep up the feelgood factor with a win over Portsmouth Ladies this afternoon.
Hunt says the team are in good spirits after defeating Portsmouth Ladies in their last encounter - the League Cup semi-final.
But he also knows that the side from the south-coast will be eager for revenge this afternoon, making for a competitive and close clash at Boldmere St Micheals [KO 2pm].
A big plus for Hunt is the fact he has a full squad to pick from for the first time in six months, with England U19s midfielder Sherry McCue now fully fit along with goalkeeper Megan Walsh.
He said: "Megan and Sherry have been back in full training for a month now, Megan completing 90 minutes in our 2-1 semi final success against Portsmouth Ladies and Sherry having played for England and her college team. Sherry is now fighting for her position back in the team.
"As you can imagine the feelgood factor from reaching the League Cup final has carried on throughout the week. Training has been superb. The tempo and application has been first class.
"All twenty players have trained this week for the first time in a while.
"But despite the good mood, this will be a difficult game for us, especially after beating them last weekend.
"Portsmouth Ladies will have a point to prove. They will be hurting at losing that game to us.
"We respect them as a team and a club but we will do all we can to get a positive result.
"We deserved our win last weekend, though. We played well after the first twenty minutes.
"Portsmouth Ladies started quickly and put us under pressure but once we settled we controlled the game.
"We got Emma Follis and Kelly Clarke on the ball as well as central pair Carly Davies and Chloe Jones.
"Jade Richards was immense too in the heart of the defence. She is a class player. She has it all.
"She defends well, plays to her strengths and starts a lot of our attacks. I haven't seen many better than her this season."
Hunt is eager for a good finale to the term for his young, emerging side.
He added: "We want to finish as high as we can in the league.
"The cup final is a few weeks off so we concentrate on that when it arrives.
"My squad are focused on current matters, confident and very much looking forward to this weekend."
Get along to Boldmere St Michael's Ground [Sat Nav: B73 5RY] to support Villa Ladies. Admission is £2.