Thursday, May 23, 2024

Man City title hopes rocked by Shaw injury

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 26 Apr 2024


Manchester City’s title hopes took a blow with the announcement that Khadija Shaw has been ruled out for the remainder of the season with a foot injury.

Shaw currently sits top of the Women’s Super League golden boot race with 21 goals in 18 games this season, a total which puts her well ahead of closest rival Lauren James, who is eight behind.

But she picked up her injury during Man City’s 5-0 WSL victory over West Ham last weekend, a match in which she had scored twice in the first half, and will now miss the crucial final weeks of the top-flight campaign.

City have been reliant on the Jamaican’s goals this season and will miss her in what is likely to be one of the most exciting run-ins in WSL history.

Chelsea sit three points behind City, however they have a game in hand and goal difference could end up being the determining factor if both teams are able to win all their remaining games.

The Citizens’ manager Gareth Taylor confirmed the Shaw blow in his pre match press conference ahead of Sunday’s clash with Bristol City, saying: “We have an issue with Bunny, she’s sustained a foot injury which will keep her out of the game for certain and potentially longer.

“It’s such a difficult one for Bunny because she’s had an incredible season.

“We had a feeling it might be an issue when she came off the pitch [against West Ham] even though it was non-contact.

“She’ll be well looked after by the medical team.”

City will have to think about who can fill the shoes of their star striker, but Taylor was confident about his team’s options despite the injury to Shaw.

“Bunny is our main number nine, but Mary [Fowler] has played there, Lauren [Hemp] has played there. Chloe [Kelly] is capable of playing there, Jess [Park] can do a really good job there,” he said.

“Of course, we all understand what Bunny brings, she is such a box player, she gives us a different way of playing. Now, we will have a different kind of number nine.”

City did, however, have some good news to share as they have tied down Lioness Lauren Hemp on new three-year contract extension keeping her at the Joie Stadium until 2027.

Hemp has won four trophies, while scoring 65 goals in 157 appearances, and has been a key player in the evolution of Taylor’s side.

Man City have secured the winger, who was out of contract at the end of the season and has attracted the attention of some of Europe’s elite clubs such as Barcelona.

This term she has proved as productive as ever for City, scoring nine goals and adding six assists. She will also be key in the coming matches after the news of Shaw’s injury misery.

“I feel at home here in Manchester,” Hemp said after signing the deal.

“With the squad we have here, we are always learning and it’s so special to be involved at a club where we’re capable of achieving anything.

“I’m so passionate about this club and there’s no place I’d rather be. I’m very excited to keep this journey going for the next few years.”


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