Manchester City head coach Gareth Taylor believes that United States international midfielder Rose Lavelle has a major role to play for his side between now and the end of the season, if she can maintain a good level of fitness.
The 25-year-old has seen her career progress regularly restricted by niggling injuries in recent years and she missed the back end of 2020 with a knee injury. Since returning to fitness, Lavelle has had to bide her time for playing opportunities and she has been named amongst the substitutes in Manchester City’s last three fixtures in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League.
While it will be difficult for Lavelle to force herself into a Manchester City starting XI made up of players currently in exceptional form, head coach Taylor is tipping the American to play a major role between now and the end of the season should she remain fit.
“Rose is an amazing player” said Taylor when speaking to FAWSL Full-Time in Manchester City’s latest press conference. “She came to us quite late compared to some of the other players and she came injured.
“Every time she seems to be fit is with the American national team or when the team is doing really well here and she has had to make her minutes up from the bench.
“No doubt she is a top player, she has the ability to play in a number of positions. This has been quite a tough adaptation for some of our players, especially those from abroad but we are delighted to have her.
“There has been some slight disruption with injuries in the first half of the season for Rose, thinking back to Everton before Christmas when she was playing brilliantly in the first half then we had to take her off with a knee problem. I think if she can stay away from injuries in the second half of the season then she is going to be a really big player for us.”
Lavelle returns to Manchester with the 2021 SheBelieves Cup MVP award in her possession. The midfielder featured in all three tournament matches for the United States, scoring one goal and creating another, as The Stars and Stripes went on to lift the trophy for a consecutive year. Taylor said that Lavelle was deserving of the award despite the player having previously suggested that there may have been a more worthy winner.
He commented by saying “I know that she may have thought that someone like Rapinoe who scored three goals in two games may have been potentially more worthy but that’s Rose in a nutshell, she is very humble.
“She is very unassuming and she will be quite tough on herself but she had an effect in the first game and that set them up to be really successful in that tournament.”
Having spent the last two weeks away from the club, Lavelle will be assessed by Manchester City before the club determine whether she will be ready to potentially play a part in their next match against Birmingham City at St George’s Park on Sunday.