Marc Skinner urges players to relish run-in as Man United chase double

·2-min read
Jacob King/PA Wire

Marc Skinner wants his Manchester United side to enjoy the finale to the season rather than feel the pressure of two trophies being on the line.

United lead the Women’s Super League with three games to go, but defending champions Chelsea, who will also take on Skinner’s side in the Women’s FA Cup final, are only four points behind with two games in hand.

Whether they pip Chelsea or not, this has been a hugely impressive season for United, who were only founded in 2018.

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“We’ve equalled our best ever points tally with three games to go, we’re in an FA Cup final making history, we’ve had the best clean sheet record, joint best defensive record, best goalscoring record,” Skinner told reporters.

“For me, this team should go into these last games and enjoy every minute and I’m going to remind them of that.”

The first of their final trio of league matches comes against struggling Tottenham, who need points to try to avoid relegation, on Sunday.

United will be without suspended captain Katie Zelem, while Norwegian duo Maria Thorisdottir and Lisa Naalsund are injured.

Chelsea needed a late winner from Sam Kerr against Liverpool on Wednesday to keep matters in their hands, and they will again be playing catch-up when they take on sixth-placed Everton on Sunday evening.

Boss Emma Hayes believes her side are ready for a final push, saying on “The first challenge on Sunday is to make sure we’re wide awake from the first minute.

“We weren’t against Liverpool, and they punished us for that, which meant we were then chasing the game from that moment. So we need to be better prepared mentally.

“This part of a season is always really tough – even more so with a World Cup on the horizon – but we’ve got a gutsy group that loves winning trophies.

“Wins like Wednesday night’s will give us the confidence that we can keep going and picking up the results we need to achieve our goals.”

Key defender Millie Bright may not play again this season, but her centre-back partner Kadeisha Buchanan is close to a return.

Kerr, meanwhile, missed training on Saturday to lead Australia’s delegation at the King’s coronation.

Second-placed Manchester City, who are still just about in the title hunt, take on Liverpool, while bottom side Reading host Aston Villa and fellow strugglers Brighton meet West Ham.