Manchester City look to reach the Continental Cup last four as they welcome Bristol City women to the Academy Stadium for their first home game of 2022 on Wednesday (January 19), writes Jennifer Wardle.
Gareth Taylor’s team took the top spot in Group B after a 5-0 win against Leicester City edged them above United on goal difference, ensuring the Blues maintained their 100% record of reaching the knock-out stages of the Conti Cup, achieving the feat in all eight seasons.
Bristol qualified top of their group as well with wins over Reading and Lewes, and a penalty shootout triumph over Crystal Palace.
The Vixens, who were relegated from the FA Women’s Super League last season, sit fifth in the FA Women’s Championship but are in good form and will be trying to protect a nine-match unbeaten run.
City’s last encounter with the Vixens ended in a 3-0 City win at Twerton Park in March 2021, while their previous home fixture against Bristol ended in an emphatic 8-1 win.
Speaking to mancity.com, Taylor highlighted the importance of a home tie for the blues, saying: “A home tie is great.
“We’ve been on the road a bit recently so it’s nice to get a game back in our stadium. I said to the players it is a good opportunity.”
The 48-year-old has also provided an update on Caroline Weir, who is yet to play in 2022 due to Covid. But the boss suggests she could make her long-awaited return in the quarter-final clash with Bristol.
“Caroline was back on the pitch yesterday. She did her reintroduction from COVID-19 to training,” he said.
“Hopefully, we’ll see something from Caz on Wednesday but it’s a steady build-up.”
With his side coming back to fine form, Taylor is hoping the squad keep pushing and continue to build momentum.
“We have good games coming up,” he added.
“It’s a good period and I’m really pleased with the way we’ve gone so far in this return after the international break.
“Everyone is contributing to the team and that’s a massive thing for me.”
Gareth Taylor‘s side have won the Continental Cup on three occasions, most recently with a shootout victory over Arsenal in 2019.