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Nikita Runnacles: 'We're looking forward to getting started at home on Sunday'

Nikita Runnacles, London City Lionesses
Nikita Runnacles, London City Lionesses

London City Lionesses enter a busy week with a clear objective: bounce back from previous disappointment with a win in the Barclays Women’s Championship over Sunderland A.F.C.

“We’ve reflected on the scoreline, but the most important thing that we’ve reflected on is the performance because it was extremely positive in the first half and we had opportunities to score,” Nikita Runnacles said of London City’s defeat to Tottenham Hotspur in the Vitality Women’s FA Cup.

“We’ve thought about the defensive aspects a lot, focussing on how we can improve and move forward in the weeks ahead.”

And London City will be busy in the days ahead.

The Lionesses kick off a three-game week at home against Sunderland, before taking to the road for trips to Bristol City and Birmingham City. It is a season-defining stretch.

“They’re excited,” Runnacles said when asked about the squad’s mood at the start of a full-steam-ahead week. “We’re here to play football and it’s been stop-start with cancelled games, cup matches, and the festive break. It’s quite nice to go into a week where we’re playing three competitive league games, so we’re looking forward to getting started at home on Sunday.”

Runnacles will field every player at her disposal this week and is confident in their ability to make an impact from the start or off the bench.

“We trust every single player that we have and they will all be called upon in these next three games,” the former West Ham United and Ipswich Town goalkeeper said. “We know that they can all come on and have an impact, whether they’re starting the game or entering later down the line.”

But what should the Lionesses expect from the Black Cats?

“Physical. Gritty. Determined,” Runnacles said when asked to preview Sunderland. “They’ve made some really good signings and the way they play is putting teams under pressure. They want to fight and battle – we know that and are ready to get to work.”

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