Chamberlain relishes Reading test
Manchester United Women’s goalkeeper Siobhan Chamberlain has said the Reds are looking forward to the challenge of playing against one of the country’s top teams this weekend.
While the Reds are flying high in the Championship, our keeper knows it will be step up in quality this weekend when we meet another top-tier team.
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“For us there’s no pressure, they’re expected to win, they’re the WSL team. We know our abilities and we’ve said this all season. We’ve got some great results but we need to go out there and do the job we’re preparing for and hopefully get that win.”
For most squads, facing opposition from a higher league is a daunting prospect, but not for Casey Stoney’s side, who have won four of their previous six encounters against WSL teams this season in cup competitions.
The Reds have already eliminated one top-flight team in this season’s FA Cup, beating Brighton and Hove Albion Women 2-0 in the fourth round, a game in which Chamberlain saved a late penalty.
Goals from Brooke Chaplen and Gemma Davison in August meant United lost 2-0 at Leigh Sports Village in the Continental Tyres League Cup, and it still stands as the Reds’ only home defeat since forming last summer.
“Everyone wants to put one over someone who’s already beaten you,” our no.1 admitted.
“It was a big game for us [against Reading] but we’ve come a long way and we’ll be going out there to win it on Sunday.”
Since that defeat last August, the Reds have enjoyed a superb season. As well as mounting two cup runs, Stoney's team sit second in the Championship table with just a handful of games remaining and the prospects of winning silverware remain strong.
“To get to the semi-final of the Conti [League] Cup and hopefully to get to the semi-final and potentially further of the FA Cup is fantastic,” said Chamberlain.
“But we need to concentrate on the league at the same time because we need to win this league and we need to get promoted and be in the WSL next year.”
Chamberlain’s experience in the final months of the campaign could prove crucial for the Reds. Having played for some of the top women's teams in the country, including Bristol City, Chelsea and Arsenal, the keeper knows the qualities needed to succeed and has been impressed with the players around her at United.
“It’s a fantastic squad and there’s so much talent,” she said. “It’s a very young squad but there’s so much potential and so much leadership from young players which is exciting to see, and hopefully in the coming years we’ll be achieving great things.”
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