Manchester City “can go really far in the Champions League,” insists Roord

Speaking at UEFA’s House of WePlayStrong event in Bilbao, Jill Roord spoke candidly about her recovery from a serious anterior cruciate ligament injury that has left her sidelined for much of her debut season in Manchester. The Dutch international also commented on Vivienne Miedema’s potential move to Manchester City.

“During the beginning [of my injury], I didn’t realise it was going to be so long,” Roord expressed, “so watching games, I really felt involved. Towards the end of the season, I didn’t really have that feeling anymore. Obviously my team, they involved me in everything – but I’m not playing, I can’t do anything to make them win.”

The midfielder explained that at the start of her recovery, she still travelled with the team to away games as normal – but that this became a less frequent occurrence as time went on, because she “felt that at some moments I needed to take my distance a bit.”

Manchester City fans will be assured to learn that her rehabilitation programme is “going really well,” and the 27-year-old confirmed that she is “back on the pitch a lot running and doing ball work – more and more every day. I have to train all summer, so the next two months will be running a lot, ball work, passing and change of direction.”

Her return could prove to be the missing piece for the Cityzens next season, after their inferior goal difference was the only thing that prevented them from ending Chelsea’s streak of dominance in the Barclays Women’s Super League this season.

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“As a team, we know how we want to play and we find that important,” she stressed. “We don’t just want to win, we want to be very dominant but we’ve also said to each other that in the end, the three points is key – that’s the main thing and I think we’ve shown that in the end it wasn’t enough.”

Roord commented: “I think we’re in a really good place right now. I think when I came last year, they’d finished fourth so confidence maybe wasn’t entirely there in the beginning of the season but I think after this season, everybody feels really confident and we won many big games in the league – or we should have won, but sometimes they gave it away.”

“I think we feel very confident – and we should – because we’ve got a good team and we can go really far in the Champions League. I think everybody knows that, we just have to keep going.”

Alongside Kerstin Casparij, Roord may have yet another Dutch colleague at the Joie Stadium next season if early reports suggesting that ex-Arsenal forward Vivienne Miedema is to sign for the club are to be believed. Asked for her hypothetical feelings on the rumoured move, Roord grinned and remarked: “I don’t know anything about that actually! Me and Viv are besties – we’ve always been.”

The House of WePlayStrong event took place in Bilbao on the morning of the UEFA Women’s Champions League final. UEFA’s WePlayStrong campaign is dedicated to celebrating and advancing women’s football across Europe.

The House of WePlayStrong included a variety of activities, speakers, and interactive experiences throughout the day.

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