Steph Houghton: Manchester City welcome captain back to training after four months of injury | Football news

Manchester City have received a “big boost” with captain Steph Houghton’s return from injury after four months out, says manager Gareth Taylor.

Houghton, who has been out since suffering an ankle injury ahead of England’s meeting with North Macedonia in September, took part in a session with her club on Wednesday, alongside team-mate Lucy Bronze.

The English duo are both in contention for Sunday’s Women’s Super League game in Brighton, as City will return to action for the first time in 2022 after the winter break.

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City boss Taylor said: “It’s great to have Steph back, she’s a big influence for us. She is our leader, our captain. We missed her.

“Lucy is back and couldn’t make her comeback before Christmas. It’s a big boost for everyone to see them.”

City posted photos of her involvement in the training this week and she posted, “Oh, it’s good to be back!”, in a message on her Twitter.

Steph Houghton has been England captain since he was appointed by Mark Sampson in January 2014
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Houghton has yet to play for England under new head coach Sarina Wiegman

Houghton has been missed by City in what has been a frustrating season so far, with the team currently sixth in the Women’s Super League.

She hopes for a good run in the second half of the campaign and to re-establish herself in the Lionesses squad this summer for Euro 2022 on home soil.

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Speaking of Good Morning Transfers, Jess Creighton says Manchester City are looking to add to their roster in the January window after a disappointing season so far

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City, last season’s runner-up, is sixth in the WSL with 13 points from nine games – seven points away from the top three.

Their hugely disappointing campaign to date, which has seen them dealing with significant injury problems, has seen heavy losses to Arsenal and Chelsea, as well as shocking setbacks to Tottenham and West Ham.

It’ll be interesting to see how they fare in the new year as they strive to get back into the top three, with boss Gareth Taylor’s roster options bolstered by players returning.

Two more Covid cases in Stadskamp

City have been hit by two more positive Covid-19 tests on their team.

Taylor added: “It’s constantly changing. Every 24, 48 hours when we test, it creates situations with players and staff.”

Leicester travel to Reading on Sunday for the other remaining game and manager Lydia Bedford confirmed she too will be without several players who have tested positive for coronavirus.

Bedford said: “We still have a strong squad, but I think like any team, people who go home for Christmas, clearly put the squad at greater risk than if we had stayed in training for two weeks.

“We have what we need for the weekend, but we have a few players who will be missing.”

Three games postponed because Covid hits WSL

Everton faces a number of absences due to Covid-19 cases
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Everton faces a number of absences due to Covid-19 cases

Aston Villa’s game against Everton is the last of three Women’s Super League games to be canceled this weekend due to Covid-19 cases.

Chelsea against Tottenham on Friday have already been postponed due to a combination of Covid-19 cases and injuries in Emma Hayes’ squad, while Manchester United’s WSL trip to West Ham on Sunday has also been canceled due to an outbreak in the Hammers squad .

Both matches would be broadcast live on air sports as the WSL returns from the winter break, but will now be played at a later date.

It is the second WSL game in a row that has been postponed for both Chelsea and West Ham after their final round match before the winter break was canceled due to Covid-19 cases in the Blues squad.

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