MELISSA Lawley says there is every reason for Birmingham City Ladies to feel confident as they bid to challenge for silverware on three fronts in the 2015 season.
Lawley, who turns 21 later this month, is a regular in the Blues’ attacking ranks and, as well as operating out wide, can also play up front, so her versatility could prove vital as David Parker’s side aim to win their first silverware since the FA Women’s Cup triumph of 2012.
Lawley, who joined the club from Bristol Academy ahead of the 2013 campaign, is keen to move on from the “heartbreak” of missing out last season’s WSL1 title on a dramatic final day in October, but says the memories of that experience can serve as a constant reminder of something which they do not wish to go through again.
“We were devastated, most of us could barely speak about it for months afterwards,” said the likeable Lawley.
“The good thing moving forward though is that we can remember it as the reason why we are all working so hard now to try and kick on, go one better and win something.
“I wouldn’t say we have targets as such, other than doing our very best to win every game we play because we’d love to win all of the competitions we are involved in.
“It would be fantastic to win the league after what happened last season, but we’ll be giving it everything in the FA Cup and Continental Cup as well.”
Lawley, who can play on either wing, is hoping the switch to full-time training sessions will make a significant difference to the side as Blues bid to ensure they can last the pace in what is predicted to be the most competitive WSL season in history.
“It’s definitely helping to have five training sessions a week instead of two and it’s also benefiting us to have the extra strength and conditioning stuff,” said Lawley.
“The extra sessions are helping us work together as a team and it’s helping me work on my game.
“Personally I’m working on quality of crosses and shooting, as I’d like to have more assists this season and also score a goal or two – I don’t think I scored last season!”
With team-mates Karen Carney, Jo Potter and Jade Moore continuing to be mainstays in the senior England squad and many other club-mates representing the national team at various age groups, Lawley says she too has England in her thoughts.
Lawley, who in the past has featured prominently for the U15, U17 and U19 age groups, added: “It’s every footballer’s dream to play for the senior England team, but for now I’d like to have a good season and get back into the U23 squad.
“The main thing for now though is to concentrate on playing well for Birmingham.
“Alex Windell and Freda Ayisi are excellent signings and we’ve got a solid all-round squad, so we are hopeful of a good season.”