Bristol Academy v Doncaster Rovers Belles
The FA WSL
Thursday 9 May 2013
Stoke Gifford Stadium
Bristol Academy boss Mark Sampson has hailed the early impact made by free-scoring Spaniard Natalia Sanchon ahead of his side’s clash against Doncaster Rovers Belles.
Sanchon was compared to Swansea City’s Michu when she arrived in England and she has lived up to the billing so far, notching four goals in her last five games.
Sampson has been delighted by her form and says she is already a key part of his side.
He said: “Any striker coming to a new club wants to get off the mark early.
“To score the amount of goals she has already makes her feel confident and she’s really feeling part of the team.”
Sanchon moved from Rayo Vallecano, where she made her name scoring more than 300 goals. The 27-year-old has benefited from the company of her compatriot Laura Del Rio, who has been at the club for a year.
Sampson explained: “Natalia’s English isn’t fluent yet and it was important we had someone who can help her with that process of settling in. Laura has a brilliant character and she’s really helped integrate Nat into the group.”
Despite suffering two recent Continental Cup defeats, Bristol are unbeaten in the League and are looking to maintain that run when they host bottom-of-the-table Doncaster at the Stoke Gifford Stadium on Thursday.
Sampson added: “Confidence comes from playing well, not conceding many goals and scoring lots of them.
“Our focus has got to be on making sure we’re trying to do all those things and if we do, hopefully we’ll go into The Cup Final in a good frame of mind.”
Doncaster will be desperate to put points on the board as they seek to better successive seventh-place finishes.
The Belles remain buoyed by their impressive draw against title-challengers Chelsea in the Continental Cup last week, a game that Donny manager John Buckley believes his side should have won.