London City Lionesses head coach Melissa Phillips - Image from London City Lionesses

London City Lionesses must show their quality to snatch derby win says Phillips

London City Lionesses head coach Melissa Phillips says that her side are ready to make a statement against Charlton Athletic on Sunday, as The Pride welcome their neighbours to Princes Park for their final home game of 2020/2021.

The Lionesses are looking to regain some momentum following two consecutive league defeats to Durham and Coventry United, both narrowly ending in 1-0 scorelines.

“We had 20 plus chances in the Coventry game that we didn’t convert,” said Phillips when speaking to FAWSL Full-Time in the pre-match press conference. “You have to show up, compete and execute the game plan on the day, so that will be important for us this Sunday.

“We’ve played well at home this season, we’re excited to get back there and we’re excited to face Charlton.

“I think it’ll be an exciting game.”

Ahead of Sunday’s derby, Charlton Athletic face Crystal Palace under the management of newly-appointed head coach Karen Hills.

“It’s a fantastic appointment for the club,” said Phillips when speaking about The Addicks’ recent news. “Of course we’ll look at the Palace result and take what details we can but ultimately, it’s the decision-making and ability to convert in key moments that will win us the game.

“We’ve got a tough stretch of games with Charlton this weekend and then Leicester and Liverpool remaining.

“We know we’ve got a lot more in the tank. What you have left in these moments and the grit and character that you show is really what separates quality teams from average teams.”

Joining Phillips in the press conference, Lionesses joint-captain Ylenia Priest described the atmosphere amongst the team as ‘determined’ ahead of the derby clash.

“Everyone is going to be really up for it, the fact that it’s a derby adds an extra bit of buzz and excitement,” said Priest. “Training has been really good and the two-week break has given the squad a good opportunity to work on technical aspects of our game.

The Pride secured well-fought 1-0 win against Charlton Athletic when the two London sides met earlier this season and Priest is expecting Sunday’s fixture to be an equally close game

She added “Both teams are going to be really up for it and wanting to grab the win, especially with the Charlton squad wanting to impress their new manager, it’s going to be tough.”

London City Lionesses’ FA Women’s Championship fixture against Charlton Athletic kicks-off at 4.30pm on Sunday and will be available for fans to watch live on the FA Player.

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