Surpassing all expectations of them coming into the season, Aston Villa remain unbeaten in the league with a gap at the top of the table having only dropped two points all season. Still grinding out results even when not at their best, we spoke to head coach Gemma Davies about the growing confidence in the team.
WF: Top of the table, leading the way, do you embrace it or shy away from it?
GD: “We embrace it, we do talk about winning and that’s important that that’s in our everyday language but we’re very much just focused on a game at a time. If I’m honest, I don’t look at the league table.”
WF: The team is almost playing with a bit of swagger; can you see the results giving the players confidence as the season goes on?
GD: “Definitely, we’ve improved game by game so there’s definitely improvements you can see in terms of their confidence and willingness to get on the ball in pressured areas and play into pressure, all of these things are getting better every time we play.”
WF: You’re still just a part-time team but the squad does seem to be physically fitter than others in the Championship…
GD: “We work really hard, we have a new physical performance coach and she’s phenomenally talented in what she does and that’s credit to her and the girls with how they’re preforming physically.”
WF: You’re still relatively new at this level, how important is the learning curve for you?
GD: “I’m learning every day but that’s what I love about the job, you learn on the job and we all make mistakes and I’ve made plenty of them but that’s how you get better. I’ve got some really good friends that I work with; Jenny Sugarman, Carly Davis are all fantastic people to have around and bounce ideas off.”
WF: It tends to be a sliding scale across the leagues, how well integrated are you with the men’s team?
GD: “We’re exceptionally integrated so have the same training environment as the men’s first team so all the facilities they get we get, so the squad crossover at times but we’re really fortunate, we’ve got a CEO who’s massive around equality across the board.”
WF: You’ve had some games at Villa Park, is there any plans to move away from Boldmere?
GD: “I don’t know if I can tell you yet, there is something maybe…”
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