Chelsea’s Telford questions FA fixture schedule but is ready for date with destiny against Montpelli
Carly Telford echoed her boss Emma Hayes thoughts that the game against Reading perhaps should not have been played as the Blues prepare for their day of Champions League destiny on Wednesday.
Chelsea are 2-0 up against French side Montpellier and have a great chance to progress to their first semi-final. But they were hampered by having to play a crunch WSL 1 game just three days before hand - having little time to recover after last Wednesday’s tough first leg.
Geordie goalkeeper Telford said of the suggestion the game should not have been played on Sunday: “That’s a good question. I think in the past years the WSL has struggled to schedule the fixtures properly - whether it’s the national teams or the Champions League.
“They know we play on lower league pitches which is a struggle when it comes to the winter period. Look, there is going to be restructure again, so who knows what is going to happen. But I can only imagine that they are going to think about these things and start trying to stop putting the players at risk when it comes to injuries in the big games.”
While Chelsea struggled to a 2-2 draw after being 2-0 down against Reading, Telford knows that the French side will be gloating while tucked up and relaxed having had a free week to prepare for the game at Kingsmeadow Stadium on Wednesday night.
She said: The French have managed to do it ( helped their side) so you have to question why the FA cant’t organise themselves and make sure the players are looked after.
“Yes, we have a big squad, we should be able to cope with fixtures. But at the end of the day, we have six games in two weeks. It does not matter how big the squad is, that is lot of effort you are putting on players who then go on international duty.
“I think we were working out that if you were Reading, they had five weeks off or without a game. which is again crazy. And some of our girls have played six or seven games - which is almost half a season.
“The girls managed to dig out a fantastic result considering we were 2-0 down. That shows what heart, grit and determination we have and what we have got on the bench to come on and show what we can do.”
Despite the tiredness in the squad, England international Telford is confident, the Blues will rise to the occasion.
“Look, we know what they are going to offer. We know they are going to have to come after us, which they kinda didn’t do at home. Maybe that will play into our hands. We have wealth of depth in our squad. And we want to get into the Champions League semi-finals.”
Tickets are still available for Wednesday’s game. kick-off is 7.05pm.