‘We’ve just lost our manager and that’s not easy to take. The girls want to put it right’, says Jepson

VICKY JEPSON admits seeing Rehanne Skinner leave Tottenham was a “tough pill to swallow” after the axe was dropped on her reign.  

And the interim Spurs Women’s manager says her players are ready for a WSL survival fight with the team facing Leicester tomorrow.

AlamyTottenham face Leicester City at home on tomorrow evening in their first game following Rehanne Skinner’s departure[/caption]

GettyInterim Spurs Women’s chief Vicky Jepson says her players will be “ready for the fight” for a first win since November[/caption]

GettyTottenham face a Leicester side who have picked up five points from their last seven WSL games[/caption]

Jepson was speaking earlier today, a day after the club announced Skinner, 43, had been “relieved of her duties”.

The sacking followed the team slipping to a ninth consecutive WSL match loss since November 20 with Spurs beaten 2-1 by Liverpool on Sunday. 

The run has seen them drop to third from bottom after collecting the fewest points at home in the league this term, before their duel with the Foxes. 

Jepson, 36, told reporters: “It has been difficult and emotional for myself, the staff and the players because we all did love Rehanne. 

“To see her exit the building yesterday was a tough pill to swallow.

“But every single one of us will be so grateful and will never forget the great things she did and the foundations she built. 

“When results aren’t going your way, there’s consequences and it’s always the manager that gets hit with those consequences. 

Reflecting on the emotions of the last 24 hours, Jepson added: “Once we addressed those emotions we had to get our game faces on because the show doesn’t stop in football so that’s our focus.

“We’ve just lost our manager. That’s not easy to take. The girls are feeling responsible for that and want to put it right.

The intensity on the grass today was through the roof and the positivity around the building was better than I’ve ever seen. 

“I know the players will turn up ready for the fight because it’s an important game for us.

“As soon as I found out the news yesterday I had to address my emotions because I am human too.

“I have a lot of respect for Rehanne. 

“I had to make sure I turned up today with a positive attitude and then we had to focus on the game plan and how we get those three points. That’s been my process until this point.”

Tottenham have been the victors in their past three WSL clashes with Leicester City. 

Results include a 2-1 defeat of the Foxes in their first game of the season.

However the team have dropped nine points from winning positions in top tier games this term and suffered a dip since their 8-0 drubbing of Brighton in November.   

While Jepson is backing her side to bounce back against Willie Kirk’s side, she believes the result of tomorrow’s game will not be a ‘make or break moment’ for Spurs’ season. 

The interim Tottenham gaffer added: “It will be tough. Willie Kirk has done a great job but we’re ready.

“We’ve regrouped and we’re ready to fight for this club together.

“It won’t make or break us because we have enough in our group. 

“It’s an important game but every match is important and none are easy.

“If we get the right result tomorrow then we can regroup from there.”

The Foxes, who are bottom and two points behind Tottenham, have picked up seven points from their last five WSL games. 

They have also kept three clean sheets in five top-flight games played this year. 

Of Leicester’s resurgence, team boss Kirk, 44, said: “Two months ago we had a massive gap between us and the rest of the league.

GettyWillie Kirk says his side are performing like a mid-table team following two wins a draw from their past five league game[/caption]

“But we’ve done so well to close the gap, it’s a credit to the players.

“We want to be the hunter, not the hunted, that will be our mentality. This season we have always been the hunted.

“If the league started in January we’d be seventh. We’re playing like a mid-table team. We’re in good form.”

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