Carla Ward - The players are digging in together

It’s a credit to this group because they are digging in together.

Carla Ward

Carla Ward will be forced to work with limited numbers again on Sunday as Everton visit in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League.

A number of injuries, and Georgia Brougham unable to play against her parent club, has left Blues with a squad of 13 heading into the game.

And despite having limited numbers to work with, Ward praised the character of the group heading into the game.

She said: “It’s a credit to this group because they are digging in together. At the minute, it’s square pegs for round holes to get us through to January, but I credit the group because it is tough at the moment.

“If the performance is there, we will take the result and that won’t be any different on Sunday. This group will give everything tomorrow no matter what.” 

Blues will be underdogs going into the game and Ward believes this is a trait that suits the squad that she has.

She explained: “Naturally, whether you like it or not, it’s where we are at as a group. I definitely think that backs against the wall with this group suits them.

“We relish every single challenge, and these are the ones that we enjoy playing in.”

Having already played Everton this season, in the FA Cup semi-final, Ward recognised that Willie Kirk’s side would pose a very tough challenge. 

She said: “They’ve had four big games, they have won one, drawn one and lost two. They are a very, very good side with quality from back to front.

“Whilst people think they are struggling, I think they are an exceptional side and they will be an unbelievably tough side to play against today, so we will have to be at it to try and get something. The pressure is solely on Everton this weekend.”

Ward also praised the fans for their continued support of the team and their understanding of the journey that the team is currently on. 

She said: “The fans have been great; they understand where we are at and they understand the process. They have been backing myself and the team and we are grateful for that. 

“If we lose the next two games, I don’t think that changes for them, they can see what we’ve got and what we are up against. The support from the fans has been brilliant.”

On the expectations of the team, she added: “Naturally, this group has had a bit of success, so we have to manage those expectations, but equally, there is no pressure on them.

“I want them to go out there and express themselves and hopefully we can put a performance in.”