Merricks: We want to keep raising the bar

Interim boss insists that there is positive team spirit ahead of Sunday's FA Cup clash.

By Heather Miller • 19 March 2023

By Paul Hazlewood
Merricks ready for quarter-final cup clash

Albion will return to cup duty on Sunday as they prepare to face Birmingham City at St Andrew's in the quarter-final of the Women's FA Cup.

Despite a last minute 2-1 defeat against Manchester City last weekend in the WSL the squad took huge encouragement from their display at Broadfield Stadium. 

Interim head coach Amy Merricks said, "We were satisfied with the performance. I said to the squad straight after the game that it could be a real turning point for us - I feel we have the momentum now for our performances.

"We've set a bar and we want to push that bar even higher. It was gutting to lose in the last minute but we competed with one of the best teams in the league which means that we are capable of getting results no matter who we are facing."

By Paul Hazlewood
Amy Merricks wants her team to build on their performance against Manchester City.

Despite the frustrating loss, Merricks insisted that the environment within the squad remains positive as they head into cup action against Birmingham for the second time this season.

She added, "There's a good spirit, the team are really keen to keep going and push on. Training and the attitude of the players has been excellent and we're really going to need that from the whole squad to push on.

"There are moments last Sunday where I thought that we could be even better, we just need to work on those moments to try and improve. 

"We have to focus on this game, that's what all of our preparations have been about. It's a different competition and it will be nice to see the players express themselves again which I think they have been doing."

By Paul Hazlewood
Merricks ready for quarter-final fight

This is the second time that Albion will face Birmingham City in the campaign after falling to a narrow 3-2 defeat back in early October in the Conti Cup. Merricks added that she feels that this is an opportunity for the squad to prove a point as they look to secure their place in the semi-finals. 

Merricks said, "If we compete well then we'll give ourselves the best opportunity to get through to the next round. They've got a team with several players experienced in the WSL. They are pushing to get promoted back to the WSL and they've beaten us once already this season.

"I feel that we've got a point to prove. We want to get over the line and put in another performance that will mean a lot going forward."