Gareth Taylor has provided an update on the current injury crisis at Manchester City ahead of their meeting with Durham this evening.
The Citizens are back in action in the Continental Cup after beating Everton 5-1 in the previous round.
There’s a hefty number of injuries on the roster, which sees City without the likes of Chloe Kelly, Lucy Bronze, and captain Steph Houghton.
The latter has been sidelined since September after she was forced to withdraw from an England training camp due to an achilles injury.
In her absence, City have seriously struggled in the Women’s Super League. Their last two results, a 2-0 defeat to West Ham and a 5-0 thrashing at the hands of Arsenal, foreshadows what could be a real nightmare season for last year’s runners-up.
Having been knocked out of the Champions League and FA Cup, the Continental Cup looks to be their only chance of some silverware this season.
Taylor provided a promising update on Houghton, who was watching her side’s latest defeat to Chelsea from the stands at the Academy Stadium on Sunday.
“Steph is progressing along well from what I hear. She’s moved to the next stage of her rehab and she’s due to be out on the pitch soon — the same as what I’m hearing about Lucy Bronze as well but that’s still probably looking like a few weeks off.”
Man City’s next two Conti Cup group stage fixtures after Durham will be against Manchester United on November 17th, followed by Leicester City on December 15th. Should Houghton return to fitness for even one of these games, it could be the boost City are in desperate need of at the moment.
Houghton helped guide her team to a strong second-place finish in the league last season, two points behind champions Chelsea. She has made just two WSL appearances this term but managed to bag herself a goal in their opening match against Everton, which ended in a 4-0 win at Goodison Park.
Taylor also confirmed further squad updates as Ruby Mace and Alanna Kennedy are set to return. The pair were ineligible to play against Chelsea in the FA Cup. But there’s further injury issues within the team.
“Bunny Shaw came back today but missed yesterday’s session,” he said of the club’s summer signing. “She still doesn’t look quite right at the moment and wasn’t able to fulfil full training.”
Man City will welcome Championship side Durham to the Academy Stadium this evening for a 19.00 GMT kick off.