Chelsea Ladies looking to make history
Emma Hayes’s Chelsea FC Ladies face German opposition tonight in a bid to make club history and reach the last 16 of the Women’s Champions League.
In the past two season’s the Blues have fallen to German opposition in the shape of Wolfsburg.
Emma Hayes’s side take a 1-0 first leg lead over Bayern Munich thanks to Drew Spencer’s first half strike, pictured right, last week at home at Kingsmeadow.
For Hayes, tonight’s encounter is all about preparation and steely determination.
The Blues limbered up for tonight’s crunch encounter by beating Liverpool 1-0, at home, at the weekend to stay top of the WSL 1 Division.
But tonight will be different as Hayes explained in an exclusive interview: “The important part of tonight’s game is how we recover mentally and physically from the weekend’s game against Liverpool.
“You can’t be involved in a game of this magnitude, which, in my opinion is the biggest game in Chelsea Ladies history without preparing correctly.
“But this is what professionalism is all about, it’s your job.
“You have to switch on to the other elements of the game. Such as eating correctly, sleeping correctly and resting your legs.”
Hayes is aware that it will be a difficult but not insurmountable task.
She said: “Bayern are a top team, the third best team in Europe. We are the underdog.
“The biggest concern for me is getting the players to understand that this will be a game where we will be without the ball, they have to buy into that.”
Last week’s first leg win saw the opposition dominate for large swathes of the game and Hayes expects much the same this evening.
“We prepared for that last Wednesday night when they had greater possession,” she said.
“We played them in pre-season, lost 3-0 but it should have been six, if I’m honest.
“So to go from that, to a 1-0 win in the first leg at home is huge progress. We have seen German teams regularly beat English opposition and no English team has beaten German opposition on English soil.
“Yeah we are up to making history, absolutely. I would not got into the game if I didn’t think we could win. We will pay respects to the opposition, but not to the extent that will push us into our own half.
“I’m certain it won’t be one-way traffic.
Hayes is on. Mission to put Chelsea on the top table of European football and feels she is not far away.
“The other two top sides are Wolfsburg who are second and Lyon first,” she said.
“Chelsea are up their now and our objective is to be in the top five and we are moving closer to that objective.”