Cushing on Walsh
- 20 June 2017 11:35
- Posted by John Edwards
Uncapped Keira Walsh is ready to take her fine form at club level onto the international stage.
That’s the view of Nick Cushing, who believes the midfielder’s performances mean it’s only a matter of time before she earns senior England honours.
Walsh has been pivotal for the Blues since returning from injury last summer, dictating play from the base of midfield with her metronomic passing.
She’s already tasted international success with the Nordic Tournament-winning England U23s this month and the man who observes her every day in training feels a call from the Lionesses is justifiably on the horizon.
“I think Keira's performances have brought her right onto the verge of a senior call-up,” said the Manchester City Women boss.
“I know her personality, her character and her ability inside out. She’s matured as a footballer.”
The 20-year-old was an ever present as Marianne Spacey’s U23s won the annual Nordic Tournament, beating Norway 2-0 in the final, following victory over Sweden and a significant draw with the USA.
Add this to her experience of playing and winning at the highest level for her club and it is easy to forget that the lifelong City fan only signed her first professional contract in June 2016 and lost five months of her career due to an ankle injury.
That’s why, despite his faith in her ability, Cushing has urged Walsh to be patient, knowing a continued success in a City shirt is the foundation on which she can kick on with England.
“Keira's got to be patient as she's still a young player,” Cushing explained.
“Even though her appearances are above her age and above her experience, she's got to be patient.
“People forget that she's had two half-seasons out. She's actually only played one full season - the Spring Series - and that's half a season anyway.
“We've got to work Keira hard to make sure we get her for a full season but I think she was our best player of the Spring Series for sure.”