Hills: 'We want to keep that winning momentum going.'

Karen Hills

Head Coach Karen Hills is keen to keep her teams 'winning momentum going' after recording two away league victories on the bounce against Durham and Crystal Palace.

This Sunday the Addicks will turn their attention to League Cup action as they gear up to lock horns against Bristol City in the second Group D fixture in the Continental Cup.

Speaking in Friday's press conference Hills reflected on the 2-1 victory over south London rivals Crystal Palace last Sunday:

"I was really pleased for the players I thought it was a fantastic team effort. I was a very hard place to go the pitch was fantastic, so credit to Crystal Palace for putting it on, but yes we came away with the three points which is always pleasing to see."

"I think the run of games where we were drawing and then losing, and then the back-to-back wins Durham away, and then going to Palace so those six points have been huge for us, it has shown and given the players a lot of confidence and belief in the group, and it was a well-needed result going into the latter stages of this year."

"It is pleasing to see some of the players that we have brought back in as well, we are looking a lot stringer across the board now so we are in a really good place and that win was huge for us." 

The return of Rachel Newborough, Emma Follis and Lauren Bruton:

"All three of them have been working so hard, credit to the staff who have been working with them to get them back to where they are now."

"For Lauren, coming on in a big game is a big ask, but it does not phase her because of her experience within the game, I thought she was excellent when she came on for fifteen minutes and she could have scored as well within that."

"To have Emma Follis back after her eight-week spell on the sidelines is also another real positive for the team, she brings that leadership that experience and that quality to the group, so really pleased to have those two back in."

"As you say with Rachel, she has worked so hard after coming back from this ACL, she has worked harder than she has ever had to, and she thoroughly deserved to be with the squad. Now the next step for her is to get some minutes under her belt, but she is working so hard, and the whole team is pleased to have them back in the squad."

"What it does is it breeds confidence, and it also breeds that comeptition edge that maybe we were lacking at the start of the season. So, we are in a really strong place, really pleased to have these players back in and obviously with Jess (Gray) coming in to make us even stronger as well from a goalkeeper point of view."

On the addition of Jessica Gray to the goalkeeping squad:

"We go into every season with two out-and-out goalkeepers for the first team. Obviously, Poppy Soper picked up an injury on her wrist and it has kept her out for a couple of weeks."

"What you do not want to do is go to these big games with one goalkeeper, we had to for a couple of games and Sian is fantastic, but we needed to strengthen and secure the next goalkeeper, and thankfully for us, we have known Jess for a little while we have been watching her movements whilst she has been playing games at Billericay where she has been, it is an opportunity for her to come into a full-time environment, get full time coaching and she is a fantastic player so we are pleased to have her, and she will be with us for the rest of the season."

Looking ahead to Sunday when Charlton will host Bristol City in the Continental Cup:

"We do not want to take this cup lightly, we want to make sure that we keep that winning momentum going, going into the week after which is another league game. So, Bristol we know is going to be a tough ask and we have played them in the league and they came and played very well and beat us. So, we need to try and put that right on Sunday we have looked at our performance from the last time we reviewed it, we know what we need to do, we know what challenges they propose to us, and we know we need to be at our very best."

Charlton return to The Oakwood on Sunday, November 27th to take on Bristol City in the Continental Cup group stage. Click here for tickets.

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