As the WSL season pauses for an international break, Manchester City find themselves 3rd in the league, and in a promising position to qualify for European football next season.
Manchester City went into the international break off the back of an impressive 2-1 victory over league rivals Arsenal, a result which extended their WSL unbeaten run to 11 games.
City will return to action on the 26th of February when they face Bristol City in the fifth round of the FA Cup, they return to league action a week later when they host out-of-form Tottenham.
Last summer Manchester City bid farewell to six first-team players: Lucy Bronze (Barcelona), Keira Walsh (Barcelona), Georgia Stanway (Bayern Munich), Caroline Weir (Real Madrid), Jill Scott (retired) and Ellen White (retired).
Following the departures and before the arrival of seven new players, the squad was looking much depleted. Despite the new arrivals it understandably took a while for the team to gel and hit form.
City started their 2022/23 campaign by exiting the Champions League at the qualification stages after losing to Real Madrid. They then went on to lose their two opening league games to Chelsea and Aston Villa, fans were starting to fear the worst for this season. However, the Blues are now yet to lose a league game since September.
Arsenal inflicted their most recent loss which came in the Continental Cup semi-final. City were victim to an extra-time winner from the Gunners to end their hopes of retaining the Continental Cup.
Manager, Gareth Taylor will be hoping his team can maintain their previous form as they will look to finish the campaign strong to guarantee European football next season.
A late title charge doesn’t seem to be out of the minds of City players'. After her side's victory over Arsenal, Lauren Hemp said: “We need to make sure we win every single one [upcoming games] to keep us in contention for the league, but I think the result today puts us in a really good position.”
Gareth Taylor was appointed head coach in May 2020 and in this time he has accumulated a winning record of 72%. He is out of contract in the summer and it remains unknown as to whether he will be offered a new one, he is reportedly “keen” to extend.
There a just nine league games left to play for City this seasons who are currently third in the WSL, just three points behind leaders Manchester United.
Chelsea are in second but have a game in hand on both Manchester-based sides. City will host Chelsea in just over a month, which will likely prove to be a massive game in the context of Chelsea’s title and Man City’s European hopes.
Arsenal have now dropped out of the European qualification places and although they have a game in hand, it’s City who seem to have the upper hand based on form.