Andy Spence has called on his Everton Ladies squad to kick off 2018 “in the right manner” with three points against Bristol City.
The Blue Girls head to the Stoke Gifford Stadium to resume their WSL 1 campaign after the festive break, looking to continue the form that saw them end 2017 on a high.
Two convincing league wins over Yeovil Town and Sunderland lifted the Toffees to sixth in the WSL 1 table, while an enthralling Continental Cup quarter final against in-form Reading saw them cruelly edged on penalties after a resolute and classy display saw them drew in extra time.
Having had his players in on New Years Day earlier this week, Spence is confident his side can pick up where they left off ahead of their first match of 2018.
“We absolutely want to start the year in the right manner with a win,” he told evertonfc.com. “We obviously ended 2017 in a good run of form, albeit with that penalty defeat to Reading. But I still see that as another top performance and we want to continue the run of displays that we have been putting in against Bristol.
“We had the players in on New Years Day and that was important. We have made that transition to full time and that comes with strict schedules to ensure you don’t have long breaks, particularly in season. It doesn’t matter what day training falls on – we have planned like any other game. It was vital the girls had time to rest, which they did, but the key aspect was ensuring we were switched on and focused on preparing right for Bristol.
“I’m confident the break hasn’t interrupted our momentum. We played an in-house game as well, which was a good opportunity to get some minutes into the squad.
“Then in training, the girls have been enthused and excited to be back in action. Like all of us, it’s great on Christmas Day but there is only so much turkey you can eat!
“We are all delighted to be back and we’re ready to go.”