Emma Hayes acknowledged that her team’s packed schedule contributed to their 2-0 loss to Manchester City in the Women’s Super League on Sunday
Despite being unbeaten in 13 league games prior to Sunday’s match, Chelsea suffered a 2-0 defeat against Manchester City in the Women’s Super League.
Fillipa Angeldahl scored City’s first goal in the 21st minute with a fine finish, followed by Lauren Hemp’s stunning volley into the top corner to double their lead.
Although Chelsea tried to make a comeback in the second half, Ellie Roebuck’s impressive goalkeeping kept them from scoring. Emma Hayes admitted that the team’s busy schedule could have played a role in their loss.
Manchester City’s win against Chelsea moved them up to second place in the WSL table, with Chelsea having a game in hand.
Emma Hayes, the Chelsea manager, thinks that their recent match against Lyon in the Champions League, which occurred in the middle of the week, was a factor in their poor performance against Manchester City.
“I thought we were so sluggish in the first half,” she said in her post-match press conference. “This was our third away game in the week and it looked like it.
“I thought that was the difference between the two teams, but well done to City. We didn’t have the legs. Your mind can want to do a million things, but if your legs can’t, that’s a real challenge.
“I don’t think people realize how tough it is for our third away game in seven days, particularly after traveling to Lyon. It is really, really tough.
“The important thing is we move on as quickly as possible and be ready for the week. We’ve got a game still in hand and need to maximize that.”
Hayes congratulates Man City
Reflecting on how Sunday’s result has impacted the title race, Hayes added: “It’s the same as it’s been all along. Which is we’ve still got a game in hand, we need to maximise that, and I think it’s fantastic for the league that it’s like this.”
After their defeat to Manchester City in the Women’s Super League, Chelsea will have a short turnaround before their next match, a Champions League clash against Lyon on Thursday.
Chelsea won the first leg thanks to a stunning goal from Guro Reiten and Hayes will be hoping her team can secure their spot in the next round by knocking out the reigning European champions at Stamford Bridge.
“The team will be ready for the week. We have to move on as quickly as possible,” the Chelsea boss said.
“My job now is to get the team recovered as quickly as possible. I know it’s challenging.
“I want the players to do what they do so well in the way they look after each other and recognise what it takes to go again. We know exactly how this team will respond to what they will all describe as disappointing.
“For that reason, no matter the result, they’re champions in my heart.”