Casey Stoney.

Casey: Every game now is a must-win

Monday 15 February 2021 12:57

Following two losses in a row, Manchester United Women's head coach Casey Stoney has stressed the importance of her side finding their form again after the international break.

For the first time since our maiden two games in the Women’s Super League back in 2019, United have suffered back-to-back defeats in the top flight.

Our shock loss at home to Reading was followed up by a disappointing three-goal defeat by Manchester City last Friday.

Despite the disappointing run of results, Stoney explained that her aims for the term have not been altered by the recent setbacks.

Listen to Casey's post-match thoughts.

"Lots of lessons for us in terms of learnings," the Reds boss told club media after the derby defeat. "But, then again, it doesn’t change our ambition to finish in the top three."

Stoney was asked how she will deal with the rather unfamiliar situation of losing successive matches and stated that the Reds must hit the ground running when we return from the international break on 7 March.

"It’s not happened before. It’s about using this international break to give players some well-needed rest. Those who are going away will hopefully stay safe and come back reinvigorated," the manager said.

"When we come back we've got Aston Villa. Every game now is a must-win. We need to make sure we take maximum points to make sure we get that Champions League place."

Our boss hopes the players can benefit from having some time off and getting experiences away from the WSL.

"I actually think it’s come at a right time, to be honest, in terms of players needing a rest and a break and just getting away," Stoney said.

"It’s difficult at the moment in terms of having anything other than football on. A different environment for the international players might help for a little while."

Jackie Groenen and the rest of the United Women's squad will be looking to respond immediately after the international break.

One of those who will be going on international duty is Dutch midfielder Jackie Groenen.

"It’s not been good enough this week and we need to work on that," our no. 14 said. "Nothing’s lost yet so we have to bounce back.

"We go back on internationals now and when we come back we just need to win."