Manchester City Women can edge closer to a first FA Women’s Super League with a victory over Reading this Sunday.
City are 10 points clear of Chelsea at the top of the table, though the Londoners have two games in hand.
Though Reading arrive at the Academy Stadium without a league win this season, skipper Steph Houghton says City won’t be underestimating their opponents.
“With every game at this club, there is pressure and expectation,” said Houghton. “As the season draws to a close, there’s pressure on us to maintain the form we’ve shown over the season.
“For us, it’s about going out and doing what we have been doing – playing well and hopefully, that’ll come with a few goals.
“When we played Reading away, they blocked up against us and tried to cause us problems by hitting us on the counter attack. Having watched the video analysis, we created quite a few chances and played some very good football at times – we just didn’t use the pressure we had on the opposition to go and score more goals.
“That will be in our minds on Sunday and we’ll have to make sure we stay switched on at the back to stop them from hitting us on the break.
“It’s not about resting on what we’ve done over the past few weeks – it’s about trying to improve ourselves which we have done this week.
“So we’ll go out and do what we’ve been doing for the last few games, and let’s try to score as many goals as we possibly can.”
When asked whether the Blues could become the ‘Invincibles’ and go through the season unbeaten, Houghton added: “I hope I can talk about that at the end of the season! The most important thing is that we keep winning and performing well. As a team, we keep pushing each other to be the best. We’ve done that over the course of the season.”
With City Women the first of a double bill this Sunday with the men’s team playing West Ham, Houghton believes two games in a day at the Etihad Campus will become a regular feature in the coming months.
Said Houghton: “With the launch of the new winter league, it will be a taste of things to come at this club. We’d love for the fans to come and watch us and hopefully cheer us on to a victory – then hopefully, we’ll see the men win as well.
“It’s exciting times here. As a player, you want to draw as many people into the stadium as possible and it’s certainly our aim to continue to play attractive football.”
Don't miss the game - find out how to get your tickets (Season card holders and Cityzens are free) for Sunday's game and the following weekend's Continental Cup semi-final with Arsenal here...