It’s been almost a month since the Tottenham women last played. The postponement of his scheduled meeting with Chelsea last weekend has extended his winter break. But their fast-paced head coach was as busy as ever.
After all, there is a lot to think about.
In November 2020, Spurs did not win under Skinner’s head coaches Karen Hills and Juan Amoros, and were just two points behind the women’s super league table. The change was amazing.
Skinner took the Spurs out of danger last year, and many teams looking to fight back this season are third, just one point behind second-placed Chelsea and are set to finish in the Champions League ahead of Sunday’s game against West Ham. .
“The break gave us time to look back and re-prioritize the next areas we need to focus on,” Skinner said. “We took a step back and got acquainted with the outline, which will help us move forward. We have a really good place behind it.
“The players needed a little rest. Most of them had three international bases in the first half of the season, which would put a lot of effort into your morale, especially if you had to play every weekend because these were my expectations. standards and are the standards I drive. “
Skinner’s mindset and his desire to improve are now on the sidelines.
Tottenham have been bolstered by a number of new players this summer, including Maeva Clemaron, Chioma Ubogagu and Kia Simon, but this season’s success has been consistent.
“Without him, we wouldn’t be here,” Skinner said. “We have very good players, but if you don’t have that kind of unity, that kind of fighting spirit, that kind of endurance, you’re not going anywhere.”
Spurs have lost just two of their first 10 WSL games this season, conceding just seven goals, and five of their six wins have been by one goal. He also made some very important and late shots against Manchester United, Reading and Manchester City.
“I really believe you can keep yourself in the game,” Skinner said. “I missed too many goals when I first joined the club, so we wanted to provide a platform to improve it.
“You never have a game of your own, so it’s about working together to change the energy and cope with the pressure. I’m not proud that the players were able to focus on that and be together at important moments.
“Especially against Arsenal and Manchester City, we’ve been under a lot of pressure but we’ve been able to score points. It shows that teamwork and team ethics are more important than individual talent. Here or there.”
However, Skinner described the club’s summer recruitment movement as a “key” to move up the table. “It was really like a reset button and we were able to prepare for the pre-season.
“Basically, you can now divide the team into two groups. There are the people left over from last year, the amazing people who understood the path we tried to take down. Then there’s the team that came in the summer.
“They added experience, versatility and the opportunity to look at it from different angles, and we were able to almost integrate with the players we acquired.
“If you have experienced players who have overcome different options, being with clubs or their countries can help you consolidate what you have on the team and succeed together.
“Then it’s about being able to interact with these people at the right time. We have a lot of leaders in the group who shine at different times, and I think that has increased our quality and the way we go. About our game stuff.”
Other factors have contributed to the change, including the inclusion of former Liverpool head coach Vicki Jepsson in the coaching staff. Before joining the Spurs, Skinner, who worked as Phil Neville’s English women’s assistant, knows the importance of this role no less than anyone else.
“I’ve changed between the head coach and the assistant several times over the years, which has given me a very good idea of what I need in each of these roles,” he said.
“Vicki and I value each other. She knows what she needs from an assistant, and I know what it’s like to be in that role. It allowed me to focus on what’s important from a manager’s point of view, and it helped us. It’s more effective as a team.”
Speaking of Skinner Zoom from the headquarters of Hotspur Way Club. Since the middle of last season, the women’s team has been a permanent resident, sharing full-time facilities used by men rather than training separately at The Hive. Edgware.
“It was a huge opportunity to move everything forward,” Skinner said. “The club has invested heavily in the development of its training ground in Hotspur Way and has been able to use all the resources to make everything easier.
“For the players, it’s something like minimizing injuries while training on a field that isn’t very good. We’ve been able to focus on what we need to focus on. I think it’s also made a huge difference, rather than distracting.”
The Spurs were promoted to the WSL only after being promoted from the second round in 2019, but were a key part of the club’s ambition to offer Skinner a job.
“Behind the scenes, there are key people leading the women’s team, and we each have a responsibility to make that happen,” she said.
“As a team, we have the same aspirations and I think it’s important for the managers of any club to understand the path they have taken.
“That’s why I came here. For me, how I saw the game and what I thought we could do to move the club forward was a definite thing for me. It’s still the same.”
In general, Skinner sees a lot of room for improvement, and most importantly, he has the ability to transform the team’s scoring opportunities, but their start to the season highlights that opportunity.
“I’m in a great position if I know everyone around me is on the same page and is working tirelessly to help us take the next steps to become a truly competitive club in the WSL. Line, in Europe.”
Continue this season the way they started, and they may reach those goals sooner than expected.