Skinner: Cup tie is a great opportunity

Thursday 14 October 2021 12:30

Manchester United Women head coach Marc Skinner is looking forward to seeing his players in action against Durham in the FA Women's Continental Tyres League Cup this evening (Thursday).

The contest at Maiden Castle will kick off at 19:00 BST and our head coach believes it's an important one for building togetherness in his already tight-knit group.

"I think this is a great opportunity to see my whole squad and to see who can step up," Skinner told club media.

"There are players who haven't had as many match minutes but have shown a lot of quality in training. This is an opportunity for them to see how we feel about them, to know how important they are to us."

Watch our exclusive pre-match interview with Marc Skinner.

Skinner is relishing the challenge of facing Durham, the current second-tier leaders, and not taking them lightly as the lowest-ranked team in United's group.

"We're not going to take this competition [easily]," he said.

"It's clear we have got a very difficult group, with Manchester City, Everton and Leicester as well as Durham.

"We want to micro-focus on every single game. It's a wonderful opportunity for us to do that. I've been watching all of Durham's games recently and they've been excellent in their league, so it'll be a different challenge which I'm really looking forward to."

Martha Thomas and Kirsty Smith remain unavailable for United for the trip to the North East but will hopefully be ready to play after the international break.

Expanding on his plan to alter his starting eleven in our first Continental Cup match of the campaign, Skinner said: "We'll make a few changes.

See what midfielder Hayley Ladd had to say ahead of the Durham trip.
"The players have absolutely [deserved it], we don't make mercy changes here.

"What we do is that we put players in that deserve it and these players absolutely deserve an opportunity to show their qualities on the field."