‘We were pretty much in control throughout‘


Joe Montemurro was delighted to return to winning ways on Wednesday night with a 5-2 win over Slavia Prague in the Champions League last-16.

It was the perfect response to our first defeat of the season just three days earlier, but it was the way in which we secured the win that pleased our head coach most.

We spoke to Montemurro after the final whistle - and this is what he said:

on whether we returned to our usual standards tactically…

Apart from the last 10 to 12 minutes where we tired, I think we were pretty much in control throughout. We came here to get a good advantage and play our football, and for 70 to 75 minutes it was pretty good. The other part of it is that Lia Walti got 90 minutes, Jordan Nobbs got 90 minutes and Emma Mitchell got a good block of game time, so the process of bringing players on was always successful.

on channelling our frustrations from Sunday’s game…

I said to them before the game that they’re very lucky they have an opportunity three days later to get over Sunday and make amends. For a large part of the game it was good, but we’re a little bit disappointed by the goals we conceded. It was more out of tiredness than anything, but in the end we can go back to London with a solid win and hopefully progress.

on what was said after conceding twice following a good performance…

I made it clear that we’ve got to keep the standards high, even though we are tired. But to be fair, a lot of these players have come out of two international games playing full 90 minutes. Jill Roord, DvD, Leah Williamson and Beth Mead have all played 90 minutes going back a week and a half ago, so for some of them it’s their fourth game in 11 or 12 days. Hey, it’s going to happen. Because we’ve set our standards very high we were disappointed that the score should have been more. It’s a 5-2 win but the score probably looks a bit better for Slavia than it does for us.

on the fitness of Maier and Schnaderbeck…

Viki and Leonie are okay, it was more of a precautionary decision for them not to travel. We felt it was better for them to get treatment back in London where they’re guaranteed the proper treatment, rather than bringing them out here with the risk of buses and flights and so on. We felt it was better to leave them at home and going forward they’ll be ready for the next couple of games. It was more of a precaution than anything else.

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