Chelsea manager Emma Hayes said that her side’s performance against Manchester City was ‘not great but resilient’ following a 2-2 draw at The Academy Stadium last night.
The point leaves her side in control of the Barclays FA Women’s Super League title race with two games left to play, The Blues will face Tottenham Hotspur away and Reading at home in their final two fixtures. Chelsea remain two points ahead of Manchester City who host Birmingham City in a fortnight before travelling to relegation-threatened West Ham United for their last game of the season.
Speaking in the post-match press conference in which FAWSL Full-Time were in attendance, Hayes said “I’ve had some time to breathe. It was a resilient performance, not a good performance but a resilient performance.
“The second half was so uncomfortable. It was painful and I didn’t really enjoy a single second of it. I’m just delighted it’s finished.”
Hayes’ side had led twice in the game before conceding 16 minutes from time when Lauren Hemp scored from close-range. She knew at half-time that it would be a very different second half compared to the first period.
She added “They had to win the game so you had to expect that they would come at us when they were 2-1 down at half-time. It wasn’t comfortable. It was one of those where we felt we had to see it out.
“I thought we made them work in the second half. We were very poor by our standards and I’m just grateful to get a point, it was very, very tough.
“I thought we took our goals well but the team as a whole stuck together and stayed composed when it mattered.
“They ultimately turned any fear into fun and at the end, that was probably the only fun we had – at full-time.”
Hayes once again was full of praise for her goalkeeper Ann-Katrin Berger who brilliantly denied Hemp which prevented the hosts from taking the lead within the final 10 minutes of the game.
“As I say time and time again, you can score goals to win games but defence wins championships,” she said. “Ann Katrin-Berger is an unbelievable asset to the team. The more pressure, the more she responds.
“There’s a mentality within the dressing room that regardless of whether we are playing well or not, somebody will bail us out.”
Chelsea are next in action on Sunday when they take on Bayern Munich in Germany in the first leg of their UEFA Women’s Champions League semi-final first leg tie.