The Wokingham Paper

EXCLUSIVE: Reading Women’s boss Kelly Chambers urging players to use ‘failure’ of not winning the WSL 2 title as motivation to clinch top spot

Kelly Chambers Reading Ladies
Reading Women's boss Kelly Chambers (Picture: Nigel Hoyle/GoalShots)

KELLY CHAMBERS believes her players will see not winning the league as a “failure” with the title race now in Reading’s hands with four games left to play.

Royals travel to bottom-placed Watford on Sunday (12pm kick off), sitting three points behind leaders Doncaster Rovers Belles with a game in hand and a superior goal difference.

And while four points will guarantee second place, which would see Chambers’ charges promoted to WSL 1, she is setting her sights on top spot.

“Obviously the first step is promotion and making sure we get those points on the board,” she said.

“We weren’t expecting Doncaster to slip up if I’m honest because they are a very good side but it’s in our hands and we need to make sure we try and capitalise on it.

“It’s probably given the girls even more motivation now that they can actually see light at the end of the tunnel to actually get that trophy.”

In the last four months, Reading have only lost three matches, all of which came against sides from the league above in cup competitions.

That includes the 3-2 defeat to Notts County Ladies in the Continental Tyres Cup quarter finals last time out two weeks ago and despite the heartbreaking nature of the defeat, Chambers feels the performance on that day has had a positive effect on the squad.

She said: “I think we deserved more out of the game but I know the girls have only had one focus this season and that’s to get promoted so I know that their focus will change now to Watford.

“We’ll be looking to get three points there so the motivation is still there to make sure we continue performing as we have done in the last few weeks.

“I think the WSL 1 games, even though they are defeats, they’ve given us confidence because they’ve shown that we can compete against the likes of Chelsea, Arsenal and Notts County.

Lauren Bruton is in contention for Reading's game at Watford this weekend (Picture: Nigel Hoyle/GoalShots)
Lauren Bruton is in contention for Reading’s game at Watford this weekend (Picture: Nigel Hoyle/GoalShots)

“In a strange way it still gives them a lift because they know that they can compete and after the Notts County game, because we thought we deserved more, it actually brought the girls a lot closer together and it inspires them and drives them on more to make sure they win the league.”

Watford sit bottom of WSL 2 on just four points and while Reading have beaten them twice already this campaign, Chambers does not expect the Hornets to roll over at Berkhamstead.

“One thing with Watford is they will always put up a fight,” said the manager.

“They are a tough side, they are obviously quite local to us as well so we kind of see it as a local derby, so we are not expecting an easy ride on Sunday.

“We know we’ve got four games left this season and we have to win four games if we want to contend to be champions.

“For me the motivation is all there for the girls and that’s been their goal since the start of the season so if it’s anything else they will look on that as a failure.

“I know they are really motivated to make sure they try and achieve that.”

Chambers reported a fresh bill of health for her squad ahead of the game with Bonnie Horwood and Lauren Bruton, who have both missed recent matches through injury, in contention for the weekend.

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