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Nikita Runnacles: 'This team won't stop – this group overcomes barriers'


Nikita Runnacles, London City Lionesses (Image: Wing Chong)
Nikita Runnacles, London City Lionesses (Image: Wing Chong)

London City Lionesses interim head coach Nikita Runnacles spoke with reporters on Thursday [10 March] ahead of the visit of Lewes F.C.


Here is every word Runnacles said on bouncing back from disappointment, the Rooks, and Lily Agg's fine scoring form.


Nikita Runnacles, Interim Head Coach


After a disappointing result last weekend, what’s the mentality of the team going into the next match?


Firstly, we were really disappointed with the performance that led to the defeat and we’ve really reflected on it. There were certain parts of our identity that we just didn’t implement against Sheffield United and that’s effectively what led to the result.


But our reflections since then have been fantastic, with the squad really keen to be accountable and talk about errors that occurred during the game. Now that it’s happened – and it hurt – we need to push forward and that’s exactly what we have done.


You often say that this group is well-equipped to handle adversity, do you see that carrying on this weekend?


The players have shown that they can kick on and push forward and they’ll do that with their performance. We know that we are dangerous when we focus on ourselves – and we really want to counter-press teams at this level. So, the focus has been around us and how we can control the way we play.


What do you expect from Lewes?


Lewes are gritty and determined – they put you under pressure and are really difficult to break down, so we have to be patient and accept that they will make it difficult for us. It’s for us to find the answers.



Jamie-Lee Napier, London City Lionesses
Jamie-Lee Napier, London City Lionesses

We’ve seen a more forward-thinking Lewes over the last couple of games – which means this is a team that can hurt you on the counter attack and through their speed on the transition. I think it’s really important that we get back on the training

pitch and focus on putting our best foot forward.


Lily Agg is in fine form recently – what have you made of her performances?


Lily is someone who rolls up her sleeves and really works in our central areas.


She works extremely hard to apply pressure on the opposition, tries to calm situations down when she is in possession, but has also been able to get onto the scoresheet as well. I think that’s been the next level to her game that we’ve seen over the last month or so and I’m sure that she will carry that forward.



What has your message to the players been this week?


It hasn’t been any different to the rest of the year really: we take every match as it comes. We have a mountain to climb between now and the end of the season, but we’re in an industry that throws obstacles at you and leaves you with two choices.


You can either find a way to jump over the barrier or you stop.


And this team won’t stop – this is a group that will find a way to overcome barriers. We have mountains to climb – and we’ll do it one game at a time and see where it takes us.


What has your message to the players been this week?


It hasn’t been any different to the rest of the year really: we take every match as it comes. We have a mountain to climb between now and the end of the season, but we’re in an industry that throws obstacles at you and leaves you with two choices.


You can either find a way to jump over the barrier or you stop.


And this team won’t stop – this is a group that will find a way to overcome barriers. We have mountains to climb – and we’ll do it one game at a time and see where it takes us.


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