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Salmon returns eager to help City drive

Ebony Salmon returns from international duty with England with extra drive to help City in their remaining eight games of the season.

Seven of those come in the WSL, where City are two points behind West Ham United as they look to climb off the bottom of the table and keep their top-flight status intact.

There’s also the small matter of a Continental Cup final against Chelsea to look forward to and Salmon is ready for the challenges ahead, buoyed after making her England debut in a 6-0 win over Northern Ireland.

“When I was first called up I couldn’t believe it,” she explained. “It all happened so quickly from getting the call to joining the camp and making my debut. It was an amazing experience for me and a great opportunity.

“It makes me want to push on even more. Camp showed me where I was compared to where I want to be and I’m even more eager to keep pushing on and improve.

“Playing with the best English players, some have been around a while and some are young like myself, but the intensity on camp was crazy and it showed I need to push myself every day in training to reach that level.

“As well as pushing myself it means I can push the other girls. That’s good for us and it can only be good to get us out of the position we’re in.”

City Women face Reading at Ashton Gate on Monday, March 8th (8:15pm) live on BT Sport and it’s an occasion Salmon and her teammates are relishing.

“The last eight games of the season are the most important for us,” the striker said. “We have to go into each game thinking we can win. We’ve set an internal target, but we have to get the most out of the rest of the season to try and stay in this league.

“Reading is a huge game for us. The last two games with them were very entertaining games, two draws and plenty of goals. It’s always a great occasion, it will be a good, tough game because they have a great squad but we have to focus on ourselves. If we do everything, we’ve worked on over the international break then we have a great chance in this game.”

Playing inside a bigger stadium and the broadcast setup will be good practice for the atmosphere that comes with the FA Continental Tyres league Cup final the following Sunday, which again will be shown live and Salmon sees these matches as a great opportunity.

“This season has been a weird one with no fans. As much as there will be no fans in the ground, knowing it is on BT Sport we know there will be more people watching than usual so that’s big for us. I think ahead of the cup final, which will also be live on TV, it will be a great occasion and prepares us for that game,” she said.

And there is belief heading into this final stretch of the season, wit Salmon explaining how everyone in the squad has a part to play.

Salmon said: “Our focus in the last couple of weeks and definitely since Matt (Beard) came in it will take everyone to get us out of our current position, not just the main players or the regular starters. People on the bench, it will take everyone to help get us out of this.

“It’s been good for me and since Matt’s come in he’s showed so much belief in us. He genuinely believes we can stay in the league and as players, to have a manager who believes you can do it, that pushes you to want to work for him. We want to do it for ourselves but for Matt as well because he’s showed so much belief in us.”


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