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Cushing: Don’t write us off

LOOKING AHEAD: Nick Cushing's Man City Women face Lyon in the Champions League semi-finals

LOOKING AHEAD: Nick Cushing's Man City Women face Lyon in the Champions League semi-finals

Nick Cushing insists Man City Women are capable of defeating European champions Lyon to progress to the final of the Champions League.

The Blues head into their semi-final second leg clash in France with a 3-1 disadvantage but the manager believes his side can overturn the deficit.

Speaking in his press conference, Cushing stated: “I hope no-one is foolish enough to write us off.

“We know what our capabilities are and we know that as a team, we can be so much better than we were in the first leg.

“We understand and totally respect that Lyon are a great team and have some really good players.

“Playing them last week has given us the chance to review their style. I said after the first leg: we knew their weaknesses and we saw them in that game.

“We believe.”

Cushing added he feels it is pivotal his side strike first but added there is no pressure on City to progress.

“The first goal will be a really important goal in the game,” he continued, “but we know the areas where we need to be better.

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“Last season, we played a game against Chelsea in the FA Cup semi-final and lost but we learnt so much about ourselves in that game.

“It was similar against Lyon. We didn’t play our best and we felt we were a little bit emotional and illogical. When this team plays like that, we’re not as good as we need to be.

“We know that performance for us is key.

“All we need to do is go out and play and concentrate on the things we’ve spoken about. Our whole aim is to win the game.

“There is no pressure on us to feel like we have to get to the final. We’ve not been in the competition before – it’s out first year and reaching the semi-finals is an unbelievable achievement for this team in season one.

“I’m proud of all of these players.

“We’re 3-1 behind and our players can play with complete freedom. Already, we have massively overachieved so I have asked them to go out and enjoy the game in a beautiful stadium.

“We’re hoping for a big crowd so they can enjoy the atmosphere and just go out and play football, create chances and score goals.

“The gameplan is to score of course but we need to play without fear. It will be a brilliant game of football.”

Picture Special

Man City Women train in Lyon

Picture Special

Bonjour! Man City Women arrive in Lyon

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Lucy Bronze wins PFA Women's Player of the Year

WINNER: Lucy Bronze collects her PFA Women's Player of the Year award.

Lucy Bronze has won the Professional Footballers' Association Women's Player of the Year award for the second time.

The Manchester City Women full-back saw off competition from team-mates Jane Ross and Jill Scott to claim the 2017 honour