Brighton & Hove Albion women’s first-team manager Hope Powell says she wants her side to show more attacking intent when they face Birmingham City at the People’s Pension Stadium on Wednesday evening.
Albion were beaten 1-0 in this season’s reverse fixture in Solihull back in September, and Powell is eager to build on the momentum from an improved run of results since the turn of the year.
She said, “It’s a big game; they’re fourth in the league and we know it’s going to be a real test for us, but we’re going to have a really good go.
“We’ve done really well in the last few games, and that has given us a lot of confidence. We’re going to be forward thinking, because when we played them away, we sat off them a bit and respected the talent they had.
“We’re going to be respectful when we play them on Wednesday, but we’re going to try and push more bodies forward and hopefully get something out of the game.
“We’ve got confidence from recent games, and the girls are quite keen to play more attacking football.”
Powell spoke about Birmingham’s strengths in more detail, and is expecting the Blues to play a fast, attacking game of their own.
“They have a lot of international players, and are very pacey upfront with good movement.
"They have strikers that can score from anywhere, so it will be fast and frantic. It’s all about concentration for us, and understanding the quality we’re facing.”
The Seagulls boss also says that her players are now beginning to adjust to the increased demands of the top flight, and what is required to compete at the highest level.
“The girls have really found the step up quite big. Some of the girls have experienced it before, but we played in FA WSL 2 for a season and that gap between what is now the Women’s Championship and the Women’s Super League is huge.
“That adaptation and transition has taken a bit of time. We recognise that we always have to punch quite high to be in games.
“We achieved that against Liverpool [won 2-0], which was probably our best performance of the season. Against Everton, it was our third game in eight days, and we got a draw.
“Against Bristol [drew 0-0], we really went for it and were unlucky not to get a win, but we were also mindful of being diligent when we’re defending and mindful of our opposition’s strengths too.
“We’ve worked continuously on the finer details and the margins for errors, which has shown in our recent performances.”