Flaherty: We can’t afford to underestimate Liverpool
Gilly Flaherty has warned West Ham United women’s team against complacency as they seek to return to winning ways against Liverpool.
The Irons welcome the Reds to Rush Green Stadium on Sunday in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League, as Flaherty and her teammates look to collect a first victory in three league outings.
To do so, the Hammers must beat a Liverpool side that, despite their precarious standing in the division, boast one of the top flight’s best defences.
The captain knows how tough the Reds will be to break down but feels the Irons must step up a level to put a string of disappointing results behind them.
We need to pull ourselves away from that pack towards the bottom and this is a great chance for us to do that
“We’ve had a tough, tough run,” Flaherty said. “We’ve been low on confidence. It’s been a difficult four to six weeks. Liverpool is a must-win game for us. We need to pull ourselves away from that pack towards the bottom and this is a great chance for us to do that.
“We can’t underestimate Liverpool though. We saw how good they are when we went up there. We were 1-0 up, but didn’t take our chances, and we could have ended up losing that match.
“For us, we need to put the last six weeks to bed and pick ourselves up. We’re in a new run now and we need to step up.”
Sunday’s match will also be head coach Matt Beard’s 50th game in charge of the Hammers; a fixture which aptly will be played against the team that he led to two league titles earlier in his career.
Flaherty has praised the impact of Beard on herself and her West Ham teammates ahead of the milestone.
“As a person, Matt was there for me when I was going through a tough time,” she added. “He reached out and, ultimately, he was the one who brought me to West Ham and trusted me enough to make me the captain.
“I have a great relationship with Matt. He’s very honest, very emotional, and wears his heart on his sleeve. He goes through every single emotion with us and I know he doesn’t ever stop. He plays the games with us.
“I know his office is always open too. I know he will give you everything he can and then we need to give it back for him. He has so much trust and faith in all of us as players and people as well.”
Gilly Flaherty is the cover star of this Sunday’s Official Matchday Programme against Liverpool, available at Rush Green Stadium. Featuring exclusive interviews, features and insight, grab your copy for just £2 ahead of this weekend’s Barclays FA Women’s Super League fixture.